Peter Graves Biography (1926-)

Original name, Peter Aurness; born March 8 (some sources cite March 18), 1926, in Minneapolis, MN; son of Rolf C. (in business) and Ruth (a journalist; maiden name, Duesler) Aurness; brother of James Arness (an actor); married JoanE. Endress (a community activist), December 16, 1950; children: Kelly Jean,Claudia King, Amanda Lee. Addresses: Agent: William Morris Agency, 151El Camino Dr., Beverly Hills, CA 90212.

Actor, director
Birth Details
March 8, 1926
Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States

Famous Works

  • Film Appearances
  • Peter Dandridge, Rogue River, Eagle-Lion, 1950
  • Ned Tallon, Fort Defiance, United Artists, 1951
  • "MP," Up Front (also known as Up Front with Mauldin), 1951
  • Chris Cronyn, Red Planet Mars, United Artists, 1952
  • Trooper Tolson, War Paint, United Artists, 1953
  • Price, Stalag 17, Paramount, 1953
  • Cowboy, East of Sumatra, Universal, 1953
  • Arnold, Beneath the 12-Mile Reef, Twentieth Century-Fox, 1953
  • Sawyer, The Yellow Tomahawk, United Artists, 1954
  • Dr. Douglas Martin, Killers from Space, RKO Radio Pictures, 1954
  • Peter Manning, Black Tuesday, United Artists, 1954
  • Captain Frank Dwyer, The Raid, Twentieth Century-Fox, 1954
  • Heesman, Robber's Roost, United Artists, 1955
  • Joe McFarland, The Naked Street (also known as The Brass Ring), United Artists, 1955
  • Lieutenant Ben Keegan, Fort Yuma, United Artists, 1955
  • Captain Bob Elliott, The Court-Martial of Billy Mitchell (also known as One Man Mutiny), Warner Bros., 1955
  • Corporal Rudolph Heinz, The Long Gray Line, Columbia, 1955
  • Ben Harper, The Night of the Hunter, United Artists, 1955
  • Morgan Earp, Wichita, Allied Artists, 1955
  • Lieutenant Lee Couzens, Hold Back the Night, Allied Artists, 1956
  • Bob Andrews, Canyon River (also known as Cattle King), Allied Artists, 1956
  • Dr. Paul Nelson, It Conquered the World (also known as It Conquered the Earth), American International Pictures, 1956
  • Dr. Ed Wainwright, Beginning of the End, Republic, 1957
  • Martin Davis, Bayou (also known as Poor White Trash), United Artists, 1957
  • Agent posing as Tom Kaylor, Death in Small Doses, 1957
  • Van Weyden, Wolf Larsen (also known as The Far Wanderer), Allied Artists, 1958
  • Donald Ashton Beasley, A Stranger in My Arms (also known as AndRide a Tiger), Universal, 1959
  • Jack Hollister, A Rage to Live, United Artists, 1965
  • Ben Barstow, Valley of Mystery (also known as Stranded), Universal, 1966
  • Captain Rodney Stimpson, Texas across the River, Universal, 1966
  • Jason Meredith, The Ballad of Josie, Universal, 1967
  • Jim Phelps, Mission Impossible versus the Mob (also known as Mission: Impossible vs. the Mob), Paramount, 1968
  • Major Whitaker, Sergeant Ryker (also known as The Case againstPaul Ryker, The Case against Sergeant Ryker, and Torn between Two Values), United Artists, 1968
  • Dutchman, The Five Man Army (also known as Un esercito di cinque uomini), Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, 1969
  • Carson, Sidecar Racers, Universal, 1975
  • Narrator, Mysterious Monsters (documentary; also known as Bigfoot the Mysterious Monster), Sun Classic Pictures, 1975
  • Jeffrey "Jeff" Knight, Parts: The Clonus Horror (also known as The Clonus Horror), Group I, 1978
  • Alec Franklin, Missile X: The Neutron Bomb Incident (also known asCruise Missile, Teheran Incident, Allarme nucleare, La guerra de los misiles, Missile X--Geheimauftrag Neutronenbombe,and Missile X, orden secreta bomba de neutrones), 1978
  • Elliott Rhoades (in English version), High Seas Hijack, 1978
  • Captain Clarence Oveur, Airplane! (also known as Flying High), Paramount, 1980
  • Kandaris, Survival Run (also known as Spree), Film Ventures, 1980
  • Mark Janzer, The Guns and the Fury, Bordeaux, 1981
  • Harland Dobbs, Savannah Smiles, Gold Coast, 1982
  • Captain Clarence Oveur, Airplane II: The Sequel (also known as Flying High II), Paramount, 1982
  • Tom Collins, Mad Mission III: Our Man from Bond Street (also knownas Aces Go Places III: Our Man from Bond Street and Zuijia paidangzhi nuhuang miling), 1984
  • Captain Ferris, Number One with a Bullet, Cannon Group, 1986
  • I'm Gonna Git You Sucka, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer/United Artists, 1988
  • Narrator, The Rise and Fall of the Soviet Union, 1992
  • Host, Addams Family Values, Paramount, 1993
  • Himself, House on Haunted Hill, Warner Bros., 1999
  • Himself as host of Mysteries in History, Men in Black II (also known as MIB2 and MIIB), Columbia, 2002
  • Don't Ask Don't Tell, Refried Flicks, 2002
  • Television Appearances
  • Series
  • Where's Raymond? (also known as The Ray Bolger Show), ABC,1953-1954
  • Jim Newton, Fury (also known as Brave Stallion), NBC, 1955-1959
  • Christopher Cobb, Whiplash, syndicated, 1961
  • Major Frank Wittaker, Court Martial, ABC, 1966
  • Jim Phelps, Mission: Impossible, CBS, 1967-1973
  • Host and narrator, Strange Places, syndicated, 1973
  • Jim Phelps, Mission: Impossible, ABC, 1988-1990
  • Host, Biography (series of specials), Arts and Entertainment, beginning 1989
  • Voices of General Sherman and General McClellan, Smithsonian's Great Battles of the Civil War, The Learning Channel, 1994
  • John Camden (The Colonel), a recurring role, 7th Heaven, The WB, 1997-2002
  • Also appeared in the series Other People, Other Places.
  • Miniseries
  • George Washington, The Rebels, 1979
  • Fred "Palmer" Kirby, The Winds of War, ABC, 1983
  • Palmer Kirby, War and Remembrance, ABC, 1988
  • Host and narrator, Discover: The World of Science, PBS, 1988
  • Movies
  • Mark Jones, The President's Plane Is Missing, ABC, 1973
  • Lew Archer, The Underground Man, NBC, 1974
  • John Wetherby, Scream of the Wolf, ABC, 1974
  • Steven Anders, Where Have All the People Gone?, NBC, 1974
  • Jim Gideon, Dead Man on the Run, ABC, 1975
  • Paul Whitley, SST: Death Flight (also known as Death Flight, Flight of the Maiden, and SST: Disaster in the Sky), ABC, 1977
  • Lieutenant Haller, Death Car on the Freeway, CBS, 1979
  • Mike Rogers, The Memory of Eva Ryker, CBS, 1980
  • Captain McIntyre, Three Hundred Miles for Stephanie, NBC, 1981
  • John Bray, Tennis Court (also known as Hammer House of Mysteryand Suspense: Tennis Court), 1984
  • Mysterious man, The Love Boat: Who Killed Maxwell Thorn?, ABC, 1986
  • Mr. Wainwright, If It's Tuesday, It Still Must Be Belgium (also known as If It's Tuesday, It Must Be Belgium), NBC, 1987
  • Bill, These Old Broads, ABC, 2001
  • Hal Whitman, With You in Spirit, 2003
  • Episodic
  • "Part of the Game," Schlitz Playhouse of the Stars, 1953
  • "The Suitors," Fireside Theatre, NBC, 1953
  • "Beyond the Cross," Fireside Theatre, NBC, 1954
  • "Bread upon the Waters," Fireside Theatre, NBC, 1954
  • "Bitter Grapes," Fireside Theatre, NBC, 1955
  • "Circle of Guilt," Studio One, 1956
  • "The Story of Anna Hartley, The Millionaire, 1956
  • "Carnival at Midnight," Climax, 1957
  • "The Deadly Tattoo," Climax, 1958
  • Jens, "The Unaccepted," Cimarron City, NBC, 1959
  • David Leland "Lee" Fisk, "You Never Had It So Good," Route 66, NBC, 1962
  • Peter Hale, "Hell Is Empty, All the Devils Are Here," Route 66, NBC, 1962
  • Mark Needham, "I'll Be the Judge, I'll Be the Jury," The Alfred Hitchcock Hour, 1963
  • Major Frank Whitaker, "The Case against Paul Ryker: Parts 1 & 2," Kraft Suspense Theatre, 1963
  • "The Playboy of Capitol Hill," The Farmer's Daughter, 1964
  • Robert Gaynor, "A Matter of Destiny," The Virginian, NBC, 1964
  • "Kentucky's Bloody Ground," The Great Adventure, 1964
  • "The Siege of Boonesborough," The Great Adventure, 1964
  • Ben Conrad, "That's Norway, Thataway," Laredo, NBC, 1966
  • Marshal Neimeyer, "Showdown with the Sundown Kid," Gallegher Goes West, 1966
  • Marshal Neimeyer, "The Crusading Reporter," Gallegher Goes West, 1966
  • Senator Keith Ashley, "The Assassins: Parts 1 & 2," Branded, 1966
  • "The Dark beyond the Door," Run for Your Life, 1966
  • Logan Harris, "Run a Crooked Mile," Daniel Boone, 1966
  • The Hollywood Squares, multiple appearances, between 1966 and 1973
  • Manning Fryes, "Rope of Gold," The F.B.I., ABC, 1967
  • Gavin Lewis, "Moonshot," The Invaders, ABC, 1967
  • Captain Dula, "Long Time Dead," Twelve O'Clock High, 1967
  • "There's One Thing Money Won't Buy, and Someday We'll Find Out," The Red Skelton Show, 1969
  • Reverend Gerald Whitney, "Tony's Family/The Minister and the Stripper/HerOwn Two Feet," The Love Boat, 1978
  • Jack, "Hit Man/The Swimmer," Fantasy Island, 1978
  • "The Island of Lost Women/The Plight of Great Yellow Birds," Fantasy Island, 1979
  • Noah Cooper, "Return of the Fighting 69th," Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, NBC, 1979
  • "Nona/One Million B.C.," Fantasy Island, 1980
  • Carl Lawrence, "The Promoter/The Judges/The Family Plan/Forever Engaged/May the Best Man Win: Parts 1 & 2," The Love Boat, 1980
  • Wade Christian, "Details at Eleven," Simon & Simon, 1981
  • "A Very Strange Affair/The Sailor," Fantasy Island, 1982
  • "Nurses Night Out," Fantasy Island, 1983
  • Dr. Edmund Gerard, "Lovers and Other Killers," Murder, She Wrote,CBS, 1984
  • Ben Marshall, "Love among the Two-by-Fours," Life with Lucy, 1986
  • Oliver Preston, The Law and Harry McGraw, CBS, 1987
  • Jerry Scott, "Mother Load," The Golden Girls, NBC, 1991
  • General Prescott, "Who Killed the Toy Maker?," Burke's Law, CBS, 1995
  • Himself, "Must Kill TV," Diagnosis Murder, CBS, 1997
  • Doctor on television, "Trash: Part 1," Diagnosis Murder, CBS, 1999
  • Narrator, Mickey Mouse Works, ABC, 1999
  • Narrator, "Clarabelle's Big Secret," House of Mouse, ABC, 2001
  • Also appeared in episodes of Cavalcade of America, Pepsi-Cola Playhouse, The Sonny & Cher Show, TV Reader's Digest, and Your Play Time.
  • Specials
  • Mr. Super Memory, Dinah in Search of the Ideal Man, NBC, 1973
  • Dean's Place, NBC, 1975
  • Steve Martin: Comedy Is Not Pretty, NBC, 1980
  • An All-Star Party for "Dutch" Reagan, CBS, 1985
  • Nick Adams, Best of Friends, 1987
  • Judge, The 1987 Miss Universe Pageant, CBS, 1987
  • Host and narrator, You Are the Jury (also known as The State ofOregon vs. Stanley Manning), NBC, 1987
  • Host and narrator, Discover: The World of Science, PBS, 1990
  • Narrator, "Northern Lights," Visions and Values, ABC, 1993
  • Host, The Unexplained: Witches, Werewolves, and Vampires ... Are TheyReal? (also known as Unexplained: Witches, Werewolves, and Vampires), NBC, 1994
  • Peter Graves: Mission Accomplished, 1997
  • The Great American History Quiz, History Channel, 1999
  • The Great American History Quiz: Pursuit of Happiness, History Channel, 2000
  • Biography: 15 Years and Counting, Arts and Entertainment, 2002
  • Also appeared in Dean Martin Celebrity Roast.
  • Pilots
  • Doug Warfield, "Call to Danger," Premiere, 1969
  • Awards Presentations
  • The 37th Annual Prime Time Emmy Awards, ABC, 1985
  • The Golden Globe's 50th Anniversary Celebration, NBC, 1994
  • Presenter, The 19th Annual CableACE Awards, TNT, 1997
  • Television Director
  • Episodic
  • Directed episodes of Gunsmoke (also known as Gun Law and Marshal Dillon), and Mission: Impossible.

Further Reference


    • Parade, June 28, 1998, p. 26

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