Adam West was an American actor.
Let’s find out some fun facts about him!
1. William West Anderson was born September 19, 1928 in Walla Walla, Washington.
2. His father was a farmer; his mother was an opera singer and concert pianist who was forced to abandon her own Hollywood dreams to care for her family.
3. Following her example, West stated to his father as a youth that he intended after school to go to Hollywood.
4. He moved to Seattle when he was 15 with his mother following his parents’ divorce.
5. West attended Walla Walla High School during his freshman and sophomore years, and later enrolled in Lakeside School in Seattle.
6. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in literature and a minor in psychology from Whitman College in Walla Walla, where he was a member of the Gamma Zeta Chapter of the Beta Theta Pi fraternity.
7. He also participated on the speech and debate team. Drafted into the United States Army, he served as an announcer on American Forces Network television.
8. After his discharge, he worked as a milkman before moving to Hawaii to pursue television.
9. While in Hawaii, West was picked for a role as the sidekick on a children’s show called El Kini Popo Show, which featured a chimp. West later took over as star of the show.
10. In 1959, West moved with his wife and two children to Hollywood, where he took the stage name Adam West. In his autobiography Back to the Batcave, he explains he chose “Adam” simply because he liked the way it looked and sounded with “West”, his middle name.
11. He appeared in the film The Young Philadelphians which starred Paul Newman He had guest-star roles in a number of television Westerns.
12. On three Warner Bros. westerns which aired on ABC—Sugarfoot, Colt .45, and Lawman—West played the role of Doc Holliday, the frontier dentist and gunfighter.
13. He portrayed Wild Bill Hickok in the episode “Westbound Stage” of the 1960 NBC Western series Overland Trail, with William Bendix and Doug McClure.
14. He guest-starred on Edmond O’Brien’s syndicated crime drama Johnny Midnight, and soon snagged a supporting role as police sergeant Steve Nelson in the crime drama, The Detectives Starring Robert Taylor.
15. He appeared once on Walter Brennan’s sitcom, The Real McCoys.
16. On January 10, 1961, West appeared as a young, ambitious deputy who foolishly confronts a gunfighter named Clay Jackson, portrayed by Jock Mahoney, in the episode “The Man from Kansas” of the NBC Western series Laramie.
17. West made two guest appearances on Perry Mason in 1961 and 1962. His first role was as small-town journalist Dan Southern in “The Case of the Barefaced Witness”.
18. His other role was as folk singer Pete Norland in “The Case of the Bogus Books”.
19. West starred in an episode of the ABC Outer Limits series titled “The Invisible Enemy”.
20. He made a brief appearance in the film Soldier in the Rain starring Jackie Gleason and Steve McQueen, and starred as Major Dan McCready, the ill-fated mission commander of Mars Gravity Probe 1 in the 1964 film Robinson Crusoe on Mars.
21. In 1965, he was cast in the comedy Western The Outlaws Is Coming, the last feature film starring The Three Stooges. He played Christopher Rolf in the episode “Stopover” of ABC’s The Rifleman, which aired on April 25, 1961.
22. He was widely known for his role as Batman in the 1960s ABC series of the same name and its 1966 theatrical feature film, his career spanned seven decades.
23. He also appeared in the science fiction film Robinson Crusoe on Mars (1964), and performed voice work on The Fairly OddParents, The Simpsons, and Family Guy, playing fictional versions of himself in all three.
24. West married Billie Lou Yeager in 1950, and they divorced in 1956.
25. He married Ngahra Frisbie in 1957, and they divorced in 1962. Together, they had two children.
26. West married Marcelle Tagand Lear in 1970. Together, they had four children.
27. During the Batman television series, West’s relationship with co-star Burt Ward has been described as “problematic”. He said “Burt fell victim to making up stories to sell books. But in a way it was flattering, because he made me sound like King Kong.”
28. West said that he played Batman “for laughs, but in order to do [that], one had to never think it was funny. You just had to pull on that cowl and believe that no one would recognize you.”
29. West died in Los Angeles on June 9, 2017 following a brief battle with leukemia. He was 88.