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LGBT People Of History Part Ninety Six Richard Chamberlain

Updated on May 10, 2012
Richard Chamberlain as Dr Kildare
Richard Chamberlain as Dr Kildare | Source
Richard Chamberlain
Richard Chamberlain | Source

Richard Chamberlain

Born George Richard Chamberlain March 31st 1934 in Beverley Hills, California, the son of Charles Axiom Chamberlain and Elsa Winifred Chamberlain. In 1952 he graduated from Beverley Hills High School and later attended Pomona College (class of 1956)

Richard co-founded a Los Angeles theatre group known as ‘Company of Angels’ and he began appearing in TV series during the 1950s. It was in 1961 when he played Dr Kildare as the young intern that he gained widespread fame. He also had some hit singles with his singing ability including the theme tune of Dr Kildare ‘Three Stars Will Shine Tonight.’

When Dr Kildare ended in 1966 Richard began performing on the theatre circuit in many works including ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’ where he played opposite Mary Tyler Moore.

In the late 60s he came to England where he had vocal coaching and played Hamlet with the Birmingham Repertory Theatre, making him the first American since 1929 to play the role.

In the 1970s and 1980s Richard gained much more fame, featuring in many films including works such as:

1. Count Of Monte Cristo

2. Three Musketeers

3. The Slipper And The Rose

4. King Solomon’s Mines

5. The Music Lovers

as well as some television series including:

1. The Man In The Iron Mask

2. Centennial

3. The Thorne Birds.

However in the late in 1980s Richard was ‘outed’ as gay by a French women’s magazine ‘Nous Deux’ or in English ‘We Two’. But it was not until 2003 upon the release of his autobiography ‘Shattered Love’ that he officially came out.

He became romantically involved with fellow actor Wesley Eure in the 1970s and then resided with his long term partner, actor, writer and producer Martin Rabbett from 1976 until 2010 in Hawaii. Now Richard has moved back to Los Angeles temporarily due to work commitments.

Richard has won many international awards including the ‘Steiger Award’ from Germany for his accomplishments in the arts.

He is still remembered for his role as the Hollywood heart throb Dr Kildare and is still even now acting both on stage and in films.

Callum & Ian

With Thanks To Wikipedia.


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    • calpol25 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Edinburgh, Scotland, UK (At Home With My Wonderful Partner)

      Thank you tillsontitan

      I could not understand why it mattered so much either? But back then, to be different from the 'so-called norm' would make a witch-hunt.

      Thank you so much for commenting and also for voting; look forward to reading more of your comments.

      All the best.


    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 

      6 years ago from New York

      Nice, factual write up about Richard Chamberlain. I knew about him being gay but couldn't understand why it mattered to Hollywood. He was gorgeous and a good actor.

      Voted up and interesting.

    • calpol25 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Edinburgh, Scotland, UK (At Home With My Wonderful Partner)

      That was the one, I could not remember which one. I do strangely remember seeing that as my mum is a Richard Chamberlain fan :)

      Good one Waynet x

      Thanks for letting me know, I actually enjoyed him in that too will have to have a look for it :)

    • waynet profile image

      Wayne Tully 

      6 years ago from Hull City United Kingdom

      Island Son...that was it! I have a memory like one of them pans full of holes.....A sieve...yes that's right! Yes he was in that as a Doctor if my memory is right!

    • calpol25 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Edinburgh, Scotland, UK (At Home With My Wonderful Partner)

      The only Dr thing I know of was Dr Kildare but he may have been in other stuff.. Will have to look it up now as am intrigued.. Thanks Waynet :)

    • waynet profile image

      Wayne Tully 

      6 years ago from Hull City United Kingdom

      Wasn't he in another doctor type program? I forget the name of it though....I didn't know he was Gay either lol!

    • calpol25 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Edinburgh, Scotland, UK (At Home With My Wonderful Partner)

      Hi ladyhowto4u x

      I know what you mean there, I could not believe he was gay either but seriously does make you think how many are playing straight roles.... lol :)

      Thanks for commenting :)

    • ladyhowto4u profile image

      Courtlney Davis 

      6 years ago

      I had no idea that Richard Chamberlain was gay. One of my favorite movies is Thorn Birds where Richard Chamberlain plays a handsome straight leading man, torn between his religion and his love for a beautiful young woman. It makes me wonder now just how many gay men are out there playing straight roles.

    • calpol25 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Edinburgh, Scotland, UK (At Home With My Wonderful Partner)

      Thanks Ian, I never knew he was either x

    • alian346 profile image


      6 years ago from Edinburgh, Scotland

      You know I had no idea when I watched the very handsome Dr Kildare as a youngster that Richard Chamberlain was gay - if only I'd known!!



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