Audra Lindley

James Whitmore dies at 87; veteran award-winning actor brought American icons to life

James Whitmore dies at 87; veteran award-winning actor brought American icons to life

James Whitmore, the veteran Tony- and Emmy-winning actor who brought American icons Will Rogers, Harry Truman and Theodore Roosevelt to life in one-man shows, died Friday. He was 87.

Whitmore died of lung cancer at his home in Malibu, said his son, Steve. He was diagnosed with the disease a week before Thanksgiving.

"He cared about acting; his whole life was dedicated to the theater and to movies," said actor David Huddleston, a longtime friend who appeared in Whitmore's 1964 movie "Black Like Me" and did a couple of plays with him. "I asked James Cagney one time to tell me the best thing you can about acting. He said never to get caught at it....

EDITION: California | U.S. & World
80°