Best Known For
Actor Adam West play the crime-fighting superhero Batman in the 1966 TV series. The phenomenal popularity of the series made West a household name.
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After two successful seasons, escalating production costs and flagging ratings caused ABC to cancel the Batman series. Typecasting brought West’s career to a grinding halt. With an overwhelming sense of failure, he was reduced to making guest appearances as Batman at county fairs and rodeos.
Over the next few years, West took whatever work he was offered,
ranging from low-budget embarrassments like
The Happy Hooker Goes to Washington (1977) to quality projects like the action-laced comedy
Hooper (1978). During the 1980s, he was featured in a slew of forgettable projects, including the raunchy motorcycle film
Hellriders (1984) and the amateur horror movie
Zombie Nightmares (1986).
In 1989, West enjoyed a resurgence of popularity with the highly anticipated release of Tim Burton's blockbuster Batman, which featured Michael Keaton in the title role. To coincide with the film, the original Batman series returned to airwaves around the world. During the 1990s, three more full-length Batman installments were released — Batman Returns (1992), Batman Forever (1995), and Batman & Robin (1997).
Most recently, West made appearances or has done voiceover work on many of America's most popular TV shows, including 30 Rock, The Simpsons, Family Guy, and Politically Incorrect.
In 1950, West married his college friend Billie Lou Yeager. The couple divorced in 1956. The following year, he wed a Hawaiian dancer, Nga Dawson, with whom he had two children. In 1962, his second marriage fell apart when Nga left him for another man. In 1970, he married Marcelle Lear. West and Lear had two children.
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The world craves the idea of unattainable perfection, and the superhero—an aspirational figure who is stronger, faster and smarter than the average human—is the epitome of human perfection. For more than two centuries, philosophers, comic book artists, writers and academics have debated the role of the superhero, from how they should interact with society to what they should wear when they're saving the world. And now, with the rash of superhero films in Hollywood, the debate becomes who should portray these larger-than-life characters on the big screen. Here are the actors and actresses who have been chosen to represent the mighty superhero. Whether it's running faster than the speed of light or stopping a speeding train with one hand, these performers are renowned for bringing the vision of the superhero to reality.
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