John Hillerman

Actor
Uptight, diminutive, mustachioed, often "veddy" (though faux) British and unfailingly urbane, the Texas-born Hillerman created this classic supporting character for 1970s TV. After making an impression as arrogant 1940s ... Read more »
Born: 12/20/1932 in Dennison, Texas, USA

Filmography

Actor (53)

A Very Brady Sequel 1996 (Movie)

Dr Whitehead (Actor)

Murder, She Wrote 1976 - 1977, 1986 - 1987, 1991 - 1992 (Tv Show)

Actor

The Hogan Family 1985 - 1991 (TV Show)

Actor

CBS All-American Thanksgiving Day Parade 1987 - 1988 (TV Show)

Actor

Gummibarchen kusst man nicht 1988 (Movie)

Pfarrer--Padre (Actor)

Magnum, P.I. 1980 - 1988 (TV Show)

Actor

Sea World's All-Star, Lone Star Celebration 1987 - 1988 (TV Show)

Actor

CBS All-American Thanksgiving Day Parade 1986 - 1987 (TV Show)

Actor

CBS All-American Thanksgiving Day Parade 1985 - 1986 (TV Show)

Actor

Texas 150: A Celebration Special 1985 - 1986 (TV Show)

Actor

CBS All-American Thanksgiving Day Parade 1984 - 1985 (TV Show)

Actor

CBS All-American Thanksgiving Day Parade 1983 - 1984 (TV Show)

Actor

One Day At A Time 1975 - 1984 (TV Show)

Actor

The Funniest Joke I Ever Heard 1983 - 1984 (TV Show)

Actor

Up the Creek 1983 (Movie)

Dean Burch (Actor)

Marathon 1979 - 1980 (TV Show)

Actor

The Murder That Wouldn't Die 1979 - 1980 (TV Show)

Actor

Beane's of Boston 1978 - 1979 (TV Show)

Actor

Betrayal 1978 - 1979 (TV Show)

Actor

Gossip 1978 - 1979 (TV Show)

Actor

Relentless 1977 - 1978 (TV Show)

Actor

Sunburn 1978 (Movie)

Webb (Actor)

The Betty White Show 1977 - 1978 (TV Show)

Actor

Audrey Rose 1977 (Movie)

Scott Velie (Actor)

Wonder Woman 1976 - 1977 (Tv Show)

Actor

At Long Last Love 1975 (Movie)

Rodney James (Actor)

Ellery Queen 1974 - 1975 (TV Show)

Actor

Lucky Lady 1975 (Movie)

Christy McTeague (Actor)

The Nickel Ride 1975 (Movie)

Carl (Actor)

Blazing Saddles 1974 (Movie)

Howard Johnson (Actor)

Chinatown 1974 (Movie)

Yelburton (Actor)

The Day of the Locust 1974 (Movie)

Ned Grote (Actor)

High Plains Drifter 1973 (Movie)

Bootmaker (Actor)

Paper Moon 1973 (Movie)

Jess Hardin/Deputy Hardin (Actor)

The Thief Who Came to Dinner 1972 (Movie)

Realtor (Actor)

What's Up Doc? 1972 (Movie)

Mr Kaltenborn (Actor)

Lawman 1971 (Movie)

Totts (Actor)

The Carey Treatment 1971 (Movie)

(Actor)

The Last Picture Show 1971 (Movie)

Teacher (Actor)

Around the World in 80 Days (TV Show)

Actor

Assault and Matrimony (TV Show)

Actor

Ellery Queen (TV Show)

Actor

Hands of a Murderer (TV Show)

Actor

Institute For Revenge (TV Show)

Actor

Kill Me If You Can (TV Show)

Actor

Street of Dreams (TV Show)

Actor

Sweet, Sweet Rachel (TV Show)

Actor

Tenspeed and Brown Shoe (TV Show)

Actor

The Great Man's Whiskers (TV Show)

Actor

The Law (TV Show)

Actor

Biography

Uptight, diminutive, mustachioed, often "veddy" (though faux) British and unfailingly urbane, the Texas-born Hillerman created this classic supporting character for 1970s TV. After making an impression as arrogant 1940s radio show detective Simon Brimmer on the NBC revival of "Ellery Queen" (NBC, 1975-76), he further refined the character as the cold fish boss of Bonnie Franklin during the 1976-77 season of the long-running CBS sitcom "One Day at a Time." (He always addressed Franklin as "M S Romano.") Hillerman fared well trading sarcastic quips with Betty White in the superior but short-lived sitcom "The Betty White Show" (CBS, 1977-78). This clever spoof of the TV business revealed his mastery of the deadpan put-down as Hillerman played the estranged ex-husband and director of an Angie Dickinson-like actress in "Undercover Woman," a fictional cop show. He apotheosized the character as the long-suffering major domo Jonathan Higgins in the hugely popular detective comedy-drama "Magnum, P.I." (CBS, 1980-88).

Relationships

Christopher Benedict Hillerman

Father

Lenora Joan Hillerman

Mother

Jo Hillerman

Sister
born on September 17, 1935

Rose Hillerman

Sister
born on December 12, 1926

EDUCATION

American Theatre Wing

New York , New York 1958 - 1959
took a year of intensive speech training to lose his thick Texan drawl

University of Texas

Texas 1949 - 1952

Milestones

1996

Had small role in "A Very Brady Sequel"

1990

Portrayed Dr. John Watson (to Edward Woodward's Sherlock Holmes) in the CBS TV-movie "Hands of a Murderer"

1982

TV miniseries debut, "Little Gloria . . . Happy at Last"

1975

Played pompous radio show detective-cum-amateur criminologist Simon Brimmer in "Too Many Suspects", the TV-movie pilot for the NBC revival of "Ellery Queen"

1970

TV-movie acting debut, "Sweet, Sweet Rachel"

1970

Feature debut, Bogdanovich's "The Last Picture Show"; first of four collaborations with the filmmaker

1958

Moved to NYC to pursue his interest in theater (date approximate)

1953

Joined the Air Force and achieved the rank of sergeant

Joined the cast of the sitcom "The Hogan Family" for the final season; played the grandfather Lloyd Hogan

Acted on stage for 15 years

Played the supporting role of Jonathan Higgins, the major domo of the Robin Masters estate, in the long-running detective series "Magnum, P.I."

Hosted the Aloha Floral Parade segment from Hawaii for the "CBS All-American Thanksgiving Day Parade"

Early stage role, spear-carrier in "Othello"; met future writer-director Peter Bogdanovich

Played the recurring role of Bonnie Franklin's boss during the second season of the popular sitcom "One Day at a Time"

Recreated Simon Brimmer for the 1940s-set mystery series "Ellery Queen"

Worked as a company member of the Theatre Club in Washington, DC

Lost his Texan drawl through a year of intensive speech training at the American Theater Wing in NYC

Co-starred as the suave, sarcastic director ex-husband of the star of a TV cop show in the sitcom "The Betty White Show"

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