Hard to believe he turned 69 yesterday......Happy Birthday Johnny!
One of The Walt Disney Company's original Mouseketeers, in 1955, Crawford has acted on stage, in films and on television.
Johnny was nominated for an Emmy Award, at age 13, for his role as Mark McCain, the son of Lucas McCain, played by Chuck Connors, in the Four Star Television series The Rifleman, which originally aired from 1958 to 1963. Throughout The Rifleman's five seasons, there was a remarkable on-screen chemistry between Connors and Crawford in the depiction of their father-son relationship. They were still close friends when Connors died on November 10, 1992, and Crawford gave a eulogy at Connors' memorial service.
During the late 1950s and early 1960s, Crawford had wide popularity with American teenagers and a recording career that generated five Billboard Top 40 hits, including the single, "Cindy's Birthday," which peaked at #8, in 1962. His other hits included "Rumors" (#12, 1962), "Your Nose is Gonna Grow" (#14, 1962) and "Proud" (#29, 1963).
Late in 1961, Crawford appeared as Victor in the episode "A Very Bright Boy" of the ABC sitcom, The Donna Reed Show. Earlier, his brother Robert had also been a guest star on The Donna Reed Show.
Once in 1964 and once in 1965, Johnny Crawford appeared on the NBC education drama, Mr. Novak, starring James Franciscus as a Los Angeles high school English teacher.
Among his films, Crawford played an American Indian in the unique adventure film, Indian Paint (1965). He played a character involved with a disturbed young girl played by Kim Darby in The Restless Ones (1965); and played a character shot by John Wayne's character in El Dorado (1967).
While enlisted in the United States Army for two years, Crawford worked on training films as a production coordinator, assistant director, script supervisor and occasional actor. His rank was sergeant at the time of his honorable discharge in December 1967.
In 1968, Crawford played a soldier wanted for murder in, "By the Numbers," an episode of the popular TV series Hawaii Five-O, starring Jack Lord.
The Resurrection of Broncho Billy was a USC student film Crawford agreed to do as a favor to his close friend, producer John Longenecker. It won the 1970 Academy Award for "Best Live Action Short Subject."
Since 1992, Johnny Crawford has led a California-based vintage dance orchestra which performs at special events. His band has been sponsored by the Playboy Jazz Festival; and the orchestra has been the repeated choice for 15 consecutive annual Art Directors Guild Awards shows at the Beverly Hilton, in Beverly Hills, CA. A remastered version of the orchestra's highly rated first album, "Sweepin' the Clouds Away," was released on August 21, 2012, on the CD Baby (distributor) label. In 2012, Crawford did an introductory commercial for The Rifleman for MeTV, saying, "Watch me on 'me,' MeTV, on The Rifleman!"Scene from "The Hunters" - Little House On The Prairie
Inset - As Mark McCain - "The Rifleman"