Actor played dopey governor on TV’s Benson
NEW YORK James Noble, a Broadway-seasoned actor who appeared on soap operas and films, including 10 and Being There, but is perhaps best known for playing the absentminded governor to Robert Guillaume’s patient head of household in the 1980s sitcom Benson, has died in Connecticut. He was 94.
Noble died March 28 at Norwalk Hospital after suffering a stroke.
Born March 5, 1922 in Dallas, Noble studied acting under Lee Strasberg at the Actors Studio. His Broadway credits include A Far Country, Strange Interlude, The Runner Stumbles and, most notably, 1776. He also appeared in the movie version of 1776 and played Bo Derek’s father in Blake Edwards’ hit film 10.
Noble played Dr. Winters in the soap opera The Doctors and had roles in One Life to Live and Another World. From 1979-1986, he starred in Benson, a spinoff of Soap that saw Guillaume move from irreverent butler to manager of the home of Noble’s scatterbrained governor. Nobel’s other TV credits included Fantasy Island, Hart to Hart, Starsky and Hutch, The Love Boat and McCloud.