Friday, July 27, 2012

Charles Martin Smith

Charles Martin Smith and a handful of other unknown actors made many take notice in 1973 when American Graffiti  took the movie world by storm. His portrayal of Terry the Toad, just may have been the first movie nerd, but unlike similar characters in today's movies, this one wasn't there strictly for laughs. In fact pathos played a huge part in the success of that role and a rare, comic three dimensional character was born.

And even though, many of his movies since then have gone unnoticed, Charles Martin Smith is an actor with a very impressive resume.

From The Buddy Holly Story  to More American Graffiti  and from Starman  to The Untouchables, he has proven that he can not only hold his own with any actor, but can also carry a film all by himself, as he did in Never Cry Wolf. This was long before Tom Hanks did Castaway and his work in that film is every bit as good if not better than the more famous Hanks.

That's either the curse or the blessing of being Not Very Famous. However it hasn't stopped Charles Martin Smith from working and when his name appears in the credits, just know you will be watching a pro that will fit in seamlessly with the major star he's playing opposite.

1 comment:

  1. Mike, you've just named one of my favorite actors, in "Starman" which is one of my favorite films. Rewatching "American Graffiti" many times has ramped up my appreciation of Charles Martin Smith's talents. You're right about the pathos in a truly funny role. Terry the Toad inspires empathy, not disdain. The actor is wonderful in "Buddy Holly." He's the true humanitarian in "Starman." Thank you for recognizing Charles Martin Smith's immense value in cinema.