Future Favorites — William Lundigan (1937) 🇺🇸

February 08, 2022

There are a hundred magic keys that unlock the doors of Hollywood but you must know where to find them. A few have these keys presented to them as result of circumstances but it remained for William Lundigan now playing his first lead in Universal’s “That’s My Story,” to plan and mold his own career.

by John Schwarzkopf

Instead of going to the movies he made them come to him... instead of hammering at the gates of casting-offices he projected his voice and personality over the radio... and in such compelling manner that he was offered a contract... Talent scouts were surprised to find the radio announcer to be ideal screen material... Over six feet tall... good-looking and with light brown hair, he looks a bit like Robert Taylor... a trifle like Robert Montgomery...

Many actors are unable to assay their own possibilities, but Lundigan did so and then cashed in on them. His father... wealthy Syracuse merchant... wanted him to be a lawyer... but friends told him he was fitted best for movies... “Very well,” he said... “if I have any talent it’ll be noticed quicker over the radio.”

So he went to station WFBL in Syracuse... landed the job of announcer... Into each broadcast he tried to inject his personality... thinking every time he went on the air, “Someone important in movieland may hear me.”

He waited four years and then Charles R. Rogers... in charge of production for Universal... heard him and summoned him to New York... The result was a contract... His first part was in “Armored Car” but his work in it justified the studio in giving him a leading role in “That’s My Story”... a romantic comedy in which he plays a naive cub reporter...

Lundigan is shy when interviewed... much prefers to talk about the virtues of other young players, but he has some very definite ideas... He believes young screen players should shun the white lights... seek friends instead among the young players who enjoy outdoor sports such as tennis and golf... He enjoys dancing... attends many informal dancing parties, but refuses to go to places frequented by screen luminaries...

He lives in Culver City with Robert Wilcox, another young player... and they are cared for by an aged Negro “mammy”... Lundigan claims to be heart-whole-and-fancy-free... but rumor is linking his name romantically with lovely Jean Rogers, another of Universal’s budding crop of leading ladies.

Source: Motion Picture Magazine, October 1937