Johnny Crawford is one of the original Mouseketeers on The Mickey Mouse Club and one of the few surviving members of the cast of the popular ABC Western series, The Rifleman. Johnny, who made his acting debut in The Pinky Lee Show in the 1950’s has called it quits with the entertainment industry for almost two decades, having retired from active acting since 1999.
The former actor will always be remembered for the outstanding role he played on The Rifleman where he portrayed the character, Mark McCain, between 1958 and 1963. Johnny took on more acting gigs after the show ended in the early 1960’s but in 1992, he revealed himself as a talented musician, performing as the leader of a California-based vintage dance orchestra. The multitalented entertainer is still alive and well, though he has managed to keep a low profile for the past few years.
Biography & Age
John Ernest Crawford was born into a family of singers and actors on the 26th of March, 1946 in LA California. He is the son of Robert Lawrence Crawford Sr. and Betty Crawford.
According to the records, the Crawford family had four children – Corydon, Nance, Robert and Johnny. In 1959, Johnny and his older brother – Robert Jr, who is best known for his role in NBC’s Laramie –got nominated for Emmy Awards in acting categories while their father – Robert, Sr was nominated for an Emmy in film editing.
The famed singer, bandleader and actor is of American nationality with a mix of Irish, Russian, English and German ancestry. Johnny Crawford graduated from Hollywood High School in 1964. The 5 feet 8 inches tall artist has been active in the entertainment since 1954 and decided to take the conscious decision to retire from acting in 1999.
Johnny was still a child in the 1950s when his acting career began with an appearance in The Pinky Lee Show. The emerging star made several appearances on television series like Make Room For Daddy which was shown between 1956 and 1958, The Lone Ranger which was one of the most popular shows of 1956 and Telephone Time which lasted from 1956 to 1957.
It is worth noting that Johnny Crawford was one of the original Mouseketeers of Walt Disney in 1955, as previously mentioned.
The actor’s big break came in 1958 when he landed his role in The Rifleman, a well-known television series which premiered in 1958 on ABC Network and came to a conclusion five years later in 1963. He also had roles in several other productions including Village of the Giants, The Restless Ones and Indian Paint which were all shown in 1965, El Dorado in 1966, Hawaii Five-O in 1968 and The Big Valley which was released in 1969.
The multi-talented entertainer’s career declined during the 1970’s and he only got some minor roles in a few movies and TV series but the tide changed after a decade when he started appearing in popular productions like William Tell (1987-1988), Macbeth (1981) and The All-American Cowboy (1985).
Before he retired from acting in 1999, the famed actor appeared in several movies and television series in the 1990s like The Thirteenth Floor (1999), Rupert Peterson Wants to be a Super Hero (1997) and The Gambler’s Return: The Luck of the Draw (1991), which saw him revisit his role from The Rifleman. In addition to his acting career, the veritable entertainer is a musician of great repute; he has been the leader of a California-based vintage dance orchestra since 1992.
Before he retired, Johnny Crawford succeeded in creating a career one can be immensely proud of.
Johnny Crawford: Children, Married, Wife, Is He Gay?
There has never been any controversy or rumours regarding the sexuality of the celebrated entertainer. His past relationships with the opposite sex are enough credible indication of the fact that he is straight. In the early 1970’s, Johnny Crawford was in a relationship with Debra Tate who is a sister to the infamous deceased actress – Sharon Tate.
Much later in the singer’s life, fate brought him and his old high school girlfriend, Charlotte Samco, together in 1990. Their reconnection which rekindled old flames culminated in a marriage on the 14th of February 1995. The couple is still married but they are separated and no longer live together. Johnny is now in a relationship with American actress, Kim Darby.
The actor has never had children with either his ex-wife or girlfriend.