Things You Didn’t Know About Sam Elliott

  
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Sam Elliott is one of Hollywood’s most beloved icons, and despite having been in the industry for decades, he is without a doubt one of the most low-key stars out there. From his very first role in 1967’s The Way West to starring in Netflix’s The Ranch, Elliott has amassed nearly 100 acting credits to his name and while fans know he is talented and charming, a lot of the rest is a mystery. Get to know the star better with these things not widely known about Sam Elliott:

12. Paramount Feud

Sam Elliott fans know that 1976’s Lifeguard was one of the actor’s biggest film roles of the time, but as it turns out it changed his relationship with one studio for the rest of his career. In an interview, Elliott once said that he “kind of f–ked himself out of a career on that level of being too honest and too opinionated,” when promoting Lifeguard. He later explained, “There’s a third quotation to that scenario, it’s ‘honest, opinionated, and not very smart.’ All at the same time. And that’s a lethal combination and I’ll tell you what it came out of — it was the way Paramount chose to market that film. I’d spent six weeks on set with a guy named Dan Petrie who I have the greatest respect for, he’s no longer alive, he directed the film. And we took that whole movie serious, even though it was a fluffy treatment because it was set on a beach. But it was about a guy who was at a point in his life that he had to make up his mind about what he wanted to do: be a lifeguard or get a real job. And when the marketing campaign came out I was on the road for a long time and every time we’d go into a city and start an interview people would start the interview by saying, ‘This movie is nothing like I expected it to be,’ based on the marketing, and we would go into this long discussion about the f—ing marketing. [Laughs] It was never positive. So in the end I never worked for Paramount again.”

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11. Sam and His Father

While Sam Elliott credits his father for showing him how to have a strong work ethic, things were not always easy between the two. At a young age Sam had decided he wanted to be an actor and that is something his father could not support. “My father once said, ‘You haven’t got a snowball’s chance in hell in Hollywood.’ That motivated me. My father was a good, practical man, but he came from a different time,” the actor explained. When Sam was only 18, his dad passed away suddenly from a heart attack at only 54, and while they had their differences about his acting career, his father’s death only made him want to work harder. “He died thinking, ‘Man, this kid is going to go down the wrong path,’” Elliott said. “And I think on some level that was either hard on me or made me more focused in my resolve to have a career.”

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