The western leading man, Sam Elliott, first met his famous actress wife, Katharine Ross, on the set of a movie. She had a leading role in the 1969 film, “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” and Elliott had a small, untitled role.
However, the two really got to know each other on the set of a horror movie called “The Legacy” in 1978. Did the two happen to make a “Gunsmoke” appearance together?
Sam Elliott, Katharine Ross, and ‘Gunsmoke’
Since 1984, the two have been married. After meeting through acting, the couple seemed to always stay faithful to that dynamic. The couple appeared in different movies and TV shows alongside each other. One of which was “The Hero,” a 2017 dramatic Western starring Elliott as a movie star coming to terms with his past. Ross is also featured in the film. They also were both in the 1991 movie titled “Conagher.”
“Gunsmoke” was the ultimate hot spot for Western stars at the time. The show had a plethora of aspiring Western stars join characters like Marshal Matt Dillon and Miss Kitty. Did the iconic duo of Elliott and Ross ever appear as a power couple on the show?
While the two stars both appeared on the show, it was not at the same time. Elliott was in a 1972 episode of the show called “The Wedding” in season 17. He played a local boy named Cory that is trying to marry Donna Clayton. Her father does not approve at first. Donna Clayton is played by Melissa Newman.
Meanwhile, Ross guest-starred in a couple of earlier episodes not alongside her future husband. She was in “The Lady,” an episode from season 10 of the show. Ross also had a small role in an episode called “Crooked Mile” that was also from season 10. She plays two different characters in the episodes.
Ross and Elliott did not get a chance to be an on-screen “Gunsmoke” couple. However, according to MeTV, the show did have a number of what would eventually be real-life couples pass through over the years. That includes Burt Reynolds and Judy Carne, Robert Culp and France Nuyen, Barbara Eden and Michael Ansara, and Darren McGavin and Kathie Browne.
Many of the couples didn’t appear in the same episode. However, the number of relationships with ties to “Gunsmoke” helps show just how popular and long-lasting the show was.
Sam Elliott Commercial
Since his days on Western films or appearing on “Gunsmoke,” Sam Elliott has ventured into making commercials. His deep and resonant voice has become highly distinguishable (as well as his bushy mustache). That iconic mustache was actually MIA during his “Gunsmoke” appearance.
Elliott has found that his voice is a money-maker. He has appeared in ads for beef, Joe Biden’s campaign, Smokey the Bear, and a series of other jobs. One of his most recent is alongside Lil Nas X for a Cool Ranch Doritos advertisement.
The two are face-to-face in a cowboy showdown. Instead of grabbing a gun, the two start a dance battle to Lil Nas X and Billy Ray Cyrus’ song “Old Town Road.” The normally stoic Sam Elliott dances and even gives himself a dramatic slap on the butt amongst other moves. Unfortunately, he doesn’t win the battle and Billy Ray Cyrus appears at the end to say, “I ain’t dancing.”
Sam Elliott continues to be one of the most recognizable Western faces today, both in movies and television, as well as in advertisements and other pop culture references.