Michael Callan, ‘Murder, She Wrote’ Actor, Dead at 86

by Tia Bailey
Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Actor Michael Callan has died at age 86. Callan was known for his roles in West Side Story, Murder, She Wrote, and more.

Callan’s daughter Rebecca Goodman shared with The Hollywood Reporter that her father died by pneumonia at the Motion Picture & Television Country House and Hospital in Woodland Hills on Monday.

The actor was born in Philadelphia in 1935. He began his long, fulfilling career in 1954. He actually acted alongside Julie Andrews in her American debut in The Boy Friend, a huge feat. After seeing him on Broadway, agents got him a contract with Colombia, where he was able to do films and TV shows along with stage acting.

Callan appeared in the original Broadway cast of West Side Story as Riff. He also acted in many old movies, such as 13 West Street, The Interns, Drifting School, and so many more.

Fans have taken to social media to mourn the late classic actor.

“I’m so sorry to hear that Michael Callan has passed away at age 86. I loved him. He was always a bright spot in film, from GIDGET GOES HAWAIIAN to CAT BALLOU,” one Twitter user said.

Another person wrote: “We were saddened to hear about the passing of Mysterious Island star Michael Callan. Our thoughts are with his family at this difficult time. As Union soldier Herbert Brown, Michael battled a menagerie of Harryhausen creations in the 1961 classic, including the Giant Bee & Crab.”

One person quote-tweeted an article of the news sharing their love for their favorite movie of Callan’s: “I will not have any Gidget Goes Hawaiian erasure. In all seriousness, Cat Ballou, his role in the West Side Story OBC, Mysterious Island… Callan will always be a favorite of mine. (He and Hickman are one of my fave duos). RIP.”

Classic TV and Movie Star Michael Callan Dead at 86

Another role Callan was known for was an episode in Murder, She Wrote. He portrayed Carl Anglin in the 1987 episode titled “Murder, She Spoke.”

The episode synopsis reads: “A temporary black-out at a recording studio leaves Jessica in the dark when the wealthy soon-to-be-owner is stabbed to death.”

Although it was just one episode, fans still remember Callan’s appearance very well.

Speaking of the show, the star, Angela Lansbury, who portrayed main character Jessica Fletcher, passed away yesterday at age 96. Her family shared a statement announcing her death: ““The children of Dame Angela Lansbury are sad to announce that their mother died peacefully in her sleep at home in Los Angeles at 1:30 a.m. today, Tuesday, October 11, 2022, just five days shy of her 97th birthday.”

Fans will miss both of the stars greatly. They both have made amazing, memorable films and shows.