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Lane Smith
1936 - 2005

Lane Smith was born on April 29, 1936 in Elvis Presley's hometown of Memphis, Tennessee. He studied alongside actors like Al Pacino and Dustin Hoffman at the prestigious Actors Studio. His feature film debut was in "The Last American Hero" in 1973. Some of his early television appearances include "Kojak" and "The Rockford Files."

After playing small parts in various movies and television shows, Lane finally stepped into the limelight when he won a Golden Globe award for his portrayal of Richard Nixon in the TV mini-series, "The Final Days" in 1989. From there he went on to appear in "My Cousin Vinny," "The Distinguished Gentleman," and "The Mighty Ducks."

On "Lois & Clark," Lane Smith played Daily Planet Editor-In-Chief Perry White, who was always on hand to offer his intrepid reporters some sound advice or words of encouragement, usually in the form of a story about "The King."

One of Lane's favorite "Lois & Clark" moments was getting to impersonate Elvis in the episode "Pheromone, My Lovely." "I think the most fun I've had so far is the episode where everybody got sprayed with that stuff and made everybody horny," Smith said in a 1994 Museum of Television and Radio appearance. "The scene as it was written was I was going to go over to my maid's house and stand outside with a boom box playin' 'Burning Love,' and I said, no, no, let me sing it. And they did, and we went over there and just had a great time."

Since then, Lane appeared in films like "Why Do Fools Fall In Love," "The Legend of Bagger Vance," and in the TV movie version of "Inherit the Wind" with Jack Lemmon and George C. Scott. He also appeared on the popular TV drama "The Practice," lent his voice to an episode of the animated "King of the Hill," and guest starred on "Judging Amy" (the series which gave "Smallville" star Tom Welling his television debut).

Lane Smith has also acted on stage, where his performances included "Glengarry Glen Ross" and a starring role as Randall McMurphy in a revival of "One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest."

Sadly, Lane lost his battle against the neuromuscular disease ALS on June 13, 2005. He was 69.


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