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Michael Dunn
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    (October 20, 1934-August 30, 1973)
    Born in Shattuck, Oklahoma
    Birth name was Gary Miller
    Portrayed Dr. Miguelito Loveless in The Wild Wild West
    Appeared in episodes of ‘Star Trek,’ ‘Get Smart,’ ‘Bonanza’ and ‘Night Gallery’
    Appeared in the films ‘Ship of Fools’ (1965), ‘You’re a Big Boy Now’ (1966), ‘No Way to Treat a Lady’ (1968), ‘Boom!’ (1968), ‘Justine’ (1970), ‘Murders in the Rue Morgue’ (1971), ‘The Werewolf of Washington’ (1973) and ‘Abdication’ (1974)
    Appeared on Broadway in ‘How to Make a Man’ (1961) and ‘The Ballad of the Sad Café’ (1963-64)
    Height: 3’10
    Suffered from spondyloepiphyseal dysplasia (SED), a genetic condition resulting in defective cartilage production
    He joined a Capuchin monastery, but dropped out after three months (1958).
    He liked to cover for his physical limitations by telling tall tales to the press, such as claiming to be a skydiver and a judo master.
    His initial obituaries referred to the cause of his death as ‘undisclosed,’ prompting rumors that he had committed suicide. (An autopsy officially concluded that he died of pulmonary heart disease related to his SED.)
    He reportedly scored 178 on an IQ test.
    His parents defied pressure to enroll him in a school for disabled children.
    He was the Detroit-area spelling bee champ (1947).
    He was captain of his high school cheerleading squad.
    He was a concert pianist in his teens, but had to give it up when the cartilage in his elbows deteriorated.
    He rescued actress Phoebe Dorin, who portrayed Dr. Loveless’ assistant, from drowning when her costume got tangled in the machinery used to sink a boat during one ‘Wild Wild West’ episode.
    He said, ‘I don’t want to play Charlton Heston parts, but there are a lot of roles I can do.’
    He was nominated for a Tony for Best Featured Actor in a Play for ‘The Ballad of the Sad Café’ and an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor for ‘Ship of Fools.’

Credit: C. Fishel

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