RIP James Whitmore

February 8, 2009
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Actor James Whitmore died on Friday. He was 87.

He had a long career in Hollywood, with his first movie starring role coming in the 1949 movie Battlefield.

The most well-known of his more recent acting exploits would probably be in The Shawshank Redemption (playing the part of  Brooks Halten, the old bloke who couldn’t handle life on the outside).

He also starred in Them!, that awesome killer ant movie from the 1950s.  Call me a Johnny-Come-Lately, but the first time I was the movie was in (I think) the early 1980s. It screened on telly here one Sunday night as part of our public broadcaster’s “Sunday Horror” series of movies.

The following week, we got the first of the traffic lights that emit a sound to help blind people cross the street safely. It sounded exactly like the sound made by the ants.

I was impressed. Once I got over the shock and stopped looking over my shoulder for a giant, angry ant.

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