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Rod Taylor, Film Star in Hitchcock's 'The Birds,' Dies at 84
By SP_COP on January 09, 2015 | From www.bloomberg.com
Rod Taylor, Film Star in Hitchcock's 'The Birds,' Dies at 84 Rod Taylor, the rugged Australian actor who starred in Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Birds,” has died in Los Angeles. He was 84.

He died on Jan. 7 at his home in Los Angeles, the New York Times reported, citing his daughter, Felicia Taylor, a former correspondent for CNN and CNBC. No cause was given.

“My dad loved his work,” she said in a statement, according to CNN. “Being an actor was his passion -- calling it an honorable art and something he couldn’t live without.”

Taylor’s Hollywood film career started in the 1950s, when he had supporting roles in “Giant” (1956), with James Dean, and “Raintree County” (1957), with Montgomery Clift. His first leading role was in “The Time Machine” (1960), George Pal’s adaptation of the classic H.G. Wells story. Taylor also provided the voice of Pongo in Walt Disney Co.’s “101 Dalmatians” (1961).

Probably his most famous role was in “The Birds” (1963), based on a Daphne du Maurier short story. The film, about an attack by flocks of birds on a northern California town, was ranked No. 7 on the American Film Institute’s list of all-time greatest thrillers, when it was compiled in 2001.

Rodney Sturt Taylor was born Jan. 11, 1930, in Lidcombe, Sydney, the only child of William Sturt Taylor, a steel construction contractor, and Mona Stewart Taylor, a writer of plays and children’s books. Taylor initially trained as an artist and decided to pursue a career as an actor after seeing Laurence Olivier in a touring production of “Richard III.”...
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