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James Arness was an actor from the 1940s to the 1990s. He is best remembered for his starring role as 'Marshal Matt Dillon' in TV's "Gunsmoke" (the show had been a big success on radio for William Conrad, but the producers did not feel he had the right "look" for TV; contrary to urban legend, they did not want John Wayne to play the lead role, but Wayne was involved in Arness getting the part of Matt Dillon, because he had met Arness a couple of years before and put him under personal contract, and he convinced Arness to take the part, even though Arness didn't want to do it, thinking TV would hurt his career, but it ended up being Arness' big break, and John Wayne filmed an introduction to the pilot episode introducing James Arness to the TV audience!). Some of his early movies include: The Thing from Another World (as the title monster!) and Them! After Gunsmoke ended, he starred in a TV series "How the West Was Won" in 1976 to 1979. He passed away in 2011 at the age of 88.
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