Rockford Files Actor James Garner Dies

Actor James Garner holds out his arms at the 11th annual Screen Actors Guild awards at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles in this February 5, 2005 file photo. Garner, best known for his prime-time television roles as the wisecracking frontier gambler on “Maverick” and as an ex-con turned private eye on “The Rockford Files,” has died at age 86, the celebrity news website TMZ reported on July 20, 2014. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson/Files (UNITED STATES – Tags: ENTERTAINMENT PROFILE OBITUARY)

He’s known to generations of movie and TV fans, but sadly Rockford Files and The Notebookstar, James Garner, passed away yesterday (July 19th) at his home in Los Angeles, California.

This universally loved actor was best known for the 70’s crime drama series The Rockford Files, in which he played Jim Rockford, a criminal-turned-private eye, between 1974-80, and during it’s run saw Garner receive three Golden Globe nominations for Best Actor in a Drama Series.

Garner, unknown to many nowadays, was a pioneer in Hollywood for being one of the first actors to excel in both Television and Film, and would go on to see his success rewarded with a career that spanned an incredible six decades. He received his first big break back in 1957 when he was cast as Bret Maverick in the critically-acclaimed western series Maverick. Between 1962 and 1974, Garnerwent on to star in two dozen movies including World-War 2 classic The Great Escape (1963) and the Academy-award winning film Grand Prix (1966).

Six years after The Rockford Files ended in 1980, and with a glittering movie career showing no signs of calming down, Garner received an Academy-award nomination for his leading performance in Murphy’s Romance (1985) in which he starred alongside Sally Field.

It would be Garner‘s appearance as Tank Sullivan in Clint Eastwood‘s blockbuster Space Cowboys (2000) and his tear-jerking performance as Duke in 2004’s modern-day romance epic The Notebook, that would adhere him to the latest generation.

Tributes have been pouring in thick and fast since news first broke of the Hollywood legend’s passing, and with a career of unforgettable performances spanning over 50 years, James Garnerwill live on through his characters for generations to come.