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Creator / Charles Durning

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Charles Edward Durning (February 28, 1923- December 24, 2012) was an American actor. His career spanned more than half a century and included films such as The Sting, Dog Day Afternoon, Tootsie, Dick Tracy and O Brother, Where Art Thou?. He was also a regular on the sitcom Evening Shade and had a recurring role on Rescue Me. His performances in The Best Little Whore House In Texas and To Be or Not to Be earned him Oscar nominations for Best Supporting Actor and he won a Tony Award for a 1990 production of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.

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  • Beware the Nice Ones: Durning was known for his friendly demeanor on set but he had a dark past. He lost five sisters to either smallpox or scarlet fever and he saw combat in World War II. He was the lone survivor of his unit on D-Day and later killed a young German soldier. In an interview, he recalled that, "A German soldier ran toward me carrying a bayonet. He couldn’t have been more than 14 or 15. I didn’t see a soldier. I saw a boy. Even though he was coming at me, I couldn’t shoot." After being stabbed with the bayonet, Durning grabbed a rock and bludgeoned the young man to death. He then held the lifeless body in his arms and wept.
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