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Known by a generation of fans for the nine years he played Nels Oleson, the mild-mannered general store owner on the 1974 family drama "Little House On the Prairie," Richard Bull also accrued over 100 film and television appearances dating back to his debut in the 1956 comedy "Full of Life." The Illinois native began his stage career at Chicago's Goodman Theatre. Small supporting parts became an integral part of his professional resume, with his most notable appearances coming in the 1957 biopic "Fear Strikes Out," the 1965 sci-fi thriller "The Satan Bug," and the 1968 Steve McQueen caper "The Thomas Crown Affair." On television, Bull locked down the role of Doc on the 1964 sci-fi series "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea," a part he would play from 1964 through 1967. While his biggest film part up to that point was in the 1968 romantic comedy "The Secret Life of an American Wife," Bull found himself getting cast in westerns alongside James Garner ("Hour of the Gun"), Gregory Peck ("The Stalking Moon"), and Clint Eastwood ("High Plains Drifter"). Once "Little House On the Prairie" ended its run in 1983, Bull focused on a slowly decreasing television workload that included appearances on "Hill Street Blues," "Designing Women," and "ER." Bull also made a 2008 return to film in the baseball drama "Sugar" and the Larry the Cable Guy comedy "Witless Protection."
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