Serving Larchmont Village, Hancock Park, and the Greater Wilshire neighborhoods of Los Angeles since 2011.

David Graham Remembered

Memorial for David B. Graham

Sometimes it’s the small things we do that leave the most lasting impressions.

David Graham would come to Larchmont every day at 2 pm and sit outside Peet’s coffee. He’s always had dog biscuits and a kind word for kids and neighbors walking by.

“We had a cushion for David to use on the metal chairs so he’d be comfortable, explained Louis at Village Heights. “Then David would leave at 4 pm because he had to go home and feed his cats Tommy and Cookie.”

But while David will be missed by those who knew him as a daily visitor to Larchmont, he also had an accomplished life as a Hollywood casting director and talent agent – something perhaps not as well-known among his recent neighborhood contacts.

A native New Yorker, Graham got his start as an office boy and understudy for a play produced by David Merrick.  Graham made his way to California in 1957, building on his skills as a theatrical manager and producer…and eventually becoming a talent agent as well.  His extensive credits include Director of Casting for Twentieth Century Fox Television, where he cast such TV pilots as “Batman, ” “The Monroes, ” “Felony Squad, ” “The Green Hornet, ” “Custer” and “Judd for the Defense.” While there, Graham spotted a young Tom Selleck.  He served as an agent for seven years, representing Anthony Hopkins, Jessica Tandy and Hume Cronyn, Anne Jackson and Eli Wallach, Joan Van Ark, Rene Auberjonois, Glynis Johns, Maggie Smith, Rutger Hauer, Michael Learned, Marsha Mason, James Whitmore and Clarence Williams III. After that, Graham worked as a freelance casting director. His feature films include “The Turning Point, ” “The Magic of Lassie, ” “First Monday in October” and “Purple Rain.” Movies for television include “Eleanor and Franklin, The White House Years, ” “Haywire, ” “The Gathering, ” “Mazes and Monsters, ” Edward and Mrs. Simpson” for Thames Television, ” Remembrance of Love, ” and “Little Girl Lost ” on which he was also a co-producer on what was to become the highest rated Movie of the Week of the 1986-87 ABC-TV television season.

Graham also served as a Governor of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. And he was a member of the Association of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and the British Academy of Film and Television Arts Los Angeles.

The following was published Sunday in the Los Angeles Times:

January 6, 1924 – November 3, 2015
David B. Graham passed away at the age of 91 following a brief illness. David was an icon in the Hollywood entertainment world as an actor, agent, casting director, and producer. He cast noteworthy shows including Three’s Company and Small Wonder and award-winning movies such as Purple Rain and Turning Point. He remained active until the very end and could be seen daily on Larchmont Blvd where he would reminisce with all who loved stage or screen and always had a treat for any canine passer-by. He was an active supporter of S.T.A.G.E., the world’s longest running AIDS benefit, and his home was filled with awards and tributes. Most importantly he never met a person in need who he would not try to help. He is survived by his sister, Elaine Graham, many cousins, and friends around the world.

This post was updated correcting the name of David’s cat. 

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Patricia Lombard
Patricia Lombard
Patricia Lombard is the publisher of the Larchmont Buzz. Patty lives with her family in Fremont Place. She has been active in neighborhood issues since moving here in 1989. Her pictorial history, "Larchmont" for Arcadia Press is available at Chevalier's Books.

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  1. Thank you for doing this story. He was a sweet and generous man with many friendly words to strangers and friends alike, and special treats for the neighborhood’s dogs. We will miss him.


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