With an oafish, blubber-cheeked appearance offset somewhat by his dulcet baritone lilt, Cliff Osmond spent the bulk of his younger years portraying lovable lugs and dimwitted scoundrels who were possibly just a bit slicker than they looked. The character actor got his start delivering vibrant cowpoke performances from beneath layers of dirt and grime, often appearing as a favored guest star on the rugged TV westerns of the early 1960s. Within just a few short years, he was discovered and cleaned up by legendary director Billy Wilder, who regularly cast him as boneheaded cops and lowbrow schemers in a series of madcap comedies starring the venerable duo of Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau. While he often cropped up on the sidelines of such fizzy Wilder concoctions as the crooked legal lark "The Fortune Cookie" and the zany prison-and-prostitution odyssey "Irma La Douce", his signature role will always be that of Barney, the affable songwriter who offered up such droll ditties as "I'm a Poached Egg" in the tuneful rom-com hit "Kiss Me, Stupid" ('64). Osmond appeared in several more films throughout the '70s, including his Wilder swan song. the newspaper dramedy "The Front Page", but the majority of his acting career's remainder saw him return to TV guest-stardom, where he became one of the most dependable recurring players on the long-running western staple "Gunsmoke". Also dabbling in behind-the-scenes roles, he become an award-nominated TV scribe and a one-time feature-film director before retiring from show business in 1996.