Gavin MacLeod is celebrating the 50th anniversary of his first movie appearance in “I Want to Live,” which won Susan Hayward an Oscar. Gavin’s film career ranged from comedy to drama. His TV credits include appearances ranging from “Hawaii Five-O” and “McHale’s Navy,” eventually leading to him costarring as Murray in “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” and Captain Merrill Stubing in “The Love Boat.” He remained aboard the “Boat” through its nine years afloat. The star list of “passengers” in the series even included yours truly aboard one of the (land-filmed) stories. The show is credited with having given birth to today’s successful global cruise business. MacLeod reasons, “The ‘Love Boat’ gave people something to dream about–and they made those dreams come true.”
This week, MacLeod was again in front of the cameras — in his capacity as spokesperson for the Princess line. He has happily held the title as well as actually cruising with them for 22 years. He is being filmed starring in a series of 12 films (one for each month) called “The Pride Of The Princess.” The hour-long shows are designed to be seen by the employees of the Princess line whose ranks have swelled to 15,000. Gavin tells me the cruise ship personnel is international and the filmed series teaches them how to meet, greet and cater to the international travelers. Letters from passengers also form a part of the filmed informational series. In addition to his shipboard appearances — several cruises per year — he is also booked ashore. His terra firma appearances include those as symphony narrator to concerts by conductor Richard Kaufman, Amng those upcoming is a holiday-themed program in Denver, Dec. 12-15. Also when ashore, Gavin MacLeod is active as honorary Mayor of the Pacific Palisades, where he also he believes in longevity — he’s in his third term here.