Monday, August 6, 2012
Emmett Evan "Van" Heflin, Jr. (December 13, 1910 – July 23, 1971) Heflin's sister was Daytime Emmy-nominated actress Frances Heflin. He made his film debut in the film, A Woman Rebels (1936), with Katharine Hepburn.
He was soon signed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, and was cast in supporting roles in films: Santa Fe Trail (1940), and Johnny Eager (1942), winning an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for the latter performance.
Heflin continued to improve his acting skills and performed a compelling characterization of the President Andrew Johnson in the film, Tennessee Johnson (1942), playing opposite Lionel Barrymore who, in the role of Congressman Thaddeus Stevens.
According to the IMDB (Internet Movie Database), Heflin served during World War II as a combat cameraman in the Ninth Air Force in Europe and with the First Motion Picture Unit.
His best-known film was the classic western, Shane(1953), in which he co-starred with Alan Ladd. His other well know films: Presenting Lily Mars (1943), The Strange Love of Martha Ivers (1946), Possessed (1947), Green Dolphin Street (1947), Act of Violence (1948), The Three Musketeers (1948), The Prowler (1951) and 3:10 to Yuma (1957).
Heflin's last major role was in Airport (1970). He played "D. O. Guerrero", a failure who schemes to blow himself up on an airliner so that his wife (played by Maureen Stapleton) can collect on a life insurance policy.