Ronald Robert Harper (born January 12, 1936) is an American television and film actor. He resides in California and continues to act.
Life and career
Harper was born in Turtle Creek, Pennsylvania, near Pittsburgh, the son of Mabel Grace (Champion) and George Harper. Harper became valedictorian of his senior class and won an academic scholarship to Princeton University in New Jersey, where he supplemented his academic studies by appearing in a number of plays and musical comedies, before moving to New York City, where he studied with Lee Strasberg.
After serving in the US Navy, Harper returned to New York. After several disappointments, he earned a job as Paul Newman's understudy in Sweet Bird of Youth on Broadway in 1959. Moving to Hollywood, his first role was in 1960 in the NBC series Tales of Wells Fargo. Steady television guest appearances followed, including a spot on NBC's The Tall Man. In December 1960, he appeared in the episode "Duel at Parkison Town" of NBC's Laramie.
Harper appeared in soap operas, including CBS's Where the Heart Is and Love of Life. He appeared as a regular performer on several TV series, including Planet of the Apes, and as Uncle Jack on the third season of Land of the Lost. His film credits included roles in Below Utopia (1997), The Odd Couple II (1998), Freedom Strike (1998), Glass Trap (2005) and The Poughkeepsie Tapes (2007).
- 87th Precinct (1961–1962), a police drama with Robert Lansing
- Wendy and Me (1964–1965), a comedy with George Burns, Connie Stevens, J. Pat O'Malley, and James T. Callahan
- The Jean Arthur Show (1966), a comedy, as Paul Marshall, the son of fictitious attorney Patricia Marshall, played by Jean Arthur
- Garrison's Gorillas (1967–1968), a World War II drama series
- Planet of the Apes (1974) as Alan Virdon, one of the astronauts
- Land of the Lost (third season, 1976) as Uncle Jack Marshall
- Generations, a soap opera, as Peter Whitmore (1990–1991)