Peter Graves Poster


Jump to: Overview (4)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Spouse (1)  | Trade Mark (4)  | Trivia (37)  | Personal Quotes (1)  | Salary (1)

Overview (4)

Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
Died in Pacific Palisades, California, USA  (heart attack)
Birth NamePeter Duesler Aurness
Height 6' 3" (1.91 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Peter Graves was born Peter Duesler Aurness on March 18, 1926 on Minneapolis, Minnesota. While growing up in Minnesota, he excelled at sports and music (as a saxophonist), and by age 16, he was a radio announcer at WMIN in Minneapolis. After two years in the United States Army Air Force, he studied drama at the University of Minnesota and then headed to Hollywood, where he first appeared on television and later made his film debut in Rogue River (1951). Numerous film appearances followed, especially in Westerns. However, Graves is primarily recognized for his television work, particularly as Jim Phelps in Mission: Impossible (1966). Peter Graves died of a heart attack on March 14, 2010, just four days before his 84th birthday.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Lyn Hammond

Spouse (1)

Joan Endress (16 December 1950 - 14 March 2010) ( his death) ( 3 children)

Trade Mark (4)

Grey hair and blue eyes
Deep commanding voice
Broad shoulders
Charismatic characters whose leadership inspires great confidence

Trivia (37)

Daughters with Endress: Kelly, Claudia and Amanda Graves.
He said it was almost over for Capt. Clarence Oveur before the movie Airplane! (1980) took flight. Graves said he was astounded when his agent sent him the script for the 1980 spoof, and after reading it he felt that it was "the worst piece of junk" he had ever seen. However, he changed his mind after meeting with the movie's writers, Jerry Zucker and David Zucker.
Although he and older brother James Arness never acted onscreen together, Graves did direct him in Gunsmoke: Which Dr. (1966).
Best remembered by the public for his starring role as Jim Phelps in Mission: Impossible (1966).
Uncle of Craig Aurness, Rolf Aurness and Jenny Lee Arness.
Ex-brother-in-law of Virginia Chapman.
Interviewed in "Earth vs. the Sci-Fi Filmmakers" by Tom Weaver (McFarland, 2005).
Received his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6667 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California on October 30, 2009.
Words of remembrance tribute provided by critic Richard Corliss for "Time" magazine's milestones section (Issue: March 29, 2010).
Died on March 14, 2010, just four days before his 84th birthday.
Acting mentor and friend of Lynda Day George.
Upon his death, he was cremated. His ashes are in his family's possession.
He played a tuba in junior high; which was something he didn't enjoy, So his father gave him a clarinet.
Before he married Joan Graves; her parents asked Graves to get a steady job. He went to Los Angeles, California, to become an actor.
College classmate of Jack Smight.
Began his career as a contract player for Eagle-Lion Pictures in 1950.
Before he was a successful actor, he was in a post-band in Denver.
Before he was a successful actor, he worked in a variety of jobs, such as cab driver.
His father, Rolf Aurness, sold surgical instruments, and his mother, Ruth Duesler Graves, was a housewife. He was of Norwegian, German, and English descent.
In 1941, when he was fifteen, he become one of the youngest members of the Musicians' Union.
An athletic enthusiast.
During World War II he and his brother James Arness joined the US Army. Arness was an infantryman and was wounded in the battle of Anzio, Italy, while Graves was posted to the Army Air Force (which later became a separate branch of the US military).
Met Joan Graves while in college. She would be his wife for nearly 60 years, until Graves' own passing in 2010.
Acting ran in his family.
His mother cultivated a love for the arts in both he and older (by three years) brother James Arness.
When he was 12 he discovered the music of Benny Goodman, a jazz clarinetist. It made a lasting impression and led him to join the band in junior high.
Brother James Arness moved to Los Angeles, California before World War II; Graves moved there after the war, when he was discharged from the military.
While a member of the track team, he won the State High Hurdles Championship in his junior year of high school.
Phil Morris, the son of his future Mission: Impossible (1988) co-star Greg Morris, grew up with Graves' children and was said to be a huge fan of the show.
Peter Graves passed away only one year before his older brother James Arness. Peter Graves died in 2010 while James Arness died in 2011.
Bore slight resemblances to those of Buddy Ebsen and Martin Landau, who also starred in Mission: Impossible (1966) with him.
Was hospitalized at Tahoe Forest Hospital for a fractured jaw with other injuries endured from a fall on icy Lake Tahoe[March 1984].
He refused to reprise his 'Jim Phelps' role for Mission: Impossible (1996), citing that he didn't want his character to go bad. He also stated, even if he could agree, he didn't want to 'die-off' at the end. The role went to Jon Voight.
He never appeared in a film nominated for the Best Picture Oscar.
When "Mission: Impossible" made a return to TV in the late 80s, Peter Graves was the only cast member from the original show to reprise his character.
He has appeared in two films that have been selected for the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically or aesthetically" significant: The Night of the Hunter (1955) and Airplane! (1980).

Personal Quotes (1)

Some people just stand out on the screen. Bob certainly did. [commenting on Airplane! co-star Robert Stack]

Salary (1)

Mission: Impossible (1966) $7,500 per episode (1969 season)

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