Remembering Richard Mulligan

My deep thanks to Julian Myers, who shared with me his memories of his friend and client Richard Mulligan (Burt) yesterday. Though he only served as Mulligan’s publicist for five years, they remained good friends until the day the actor died.

Though some who worked with Mulligan over the years have said that he could be difficult behind the scenes at times, most agree that he was also capable of great warmth.

As Myers explained, he was a gentleman who was capable of great kindness, but didn’t always know how to relate to people one on one. And just about everyone agrees that on the stage, he was nothing short of a genius.

The actor passed away on Sept. 26, 2000.

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8 comments on “Remembering Richard Mulligan

  1. This is going to sound like a stupid question, but are you going to share Julian Myers’ memories of Richard Mulligan with us? Or am I missing something? Sorry…

    • Not a stupid question at all, Catherine. Julian’s memories of Richard Mulligan will definitely be included in the book. Of all the people in front of the camera on Soap, I get the feeling that he is perhaps the most misunderstood; Julian’s memories will help to make for a more well-rounded view of the man.

  2. Thanks, Aaron. I should have read more of your blog before commenting. I didn’t realize you were writing a book until I read more.

  3. I’m glad that somebody finally got down to The Nitty Gritty of what this show was and still is to fans like me.

    I received an autograph picture from Richard a few years before he passed away and before Empty Nest ended its run.

    I also feel he was greatly misunderstood by everyone.Reaching out one on one is not that hard to do. But sometimes saying the right things can be very hard to do. I know exactly how that feels.

    • I certainly get that impression about Richard Mulligan from the people I’ve spoken to who worked with him. As we peel back the lairs and compare each person’s experiences with the man, it becomes clear that he may have been dealing with a lot more than many actually realized. The one thing that nearly everybody agrees on is just how gifted an actor he was. The word that keeps occurring to me when I’m writing about him in the book is “dangerous,” but not in a negative sense. Rather, dangerous in the sense that his fellow actors never quite knew what he was going to do once the camera landed on him, no matter how many rehearsals had been staged. He was in a state of constant creation. Whatever issues he had dealing with other people on occasion, he made up for once the director said “action.”

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