Peter Graves: 1926-2010

Actor Peter Graves was best known for his starring role as Jim Phelps, leader of the Impossible Mission Force, on the popular television drama series Mission: Impossible, from 1967 to 1973. He took over as star of the series from Steven Hill with the second season.

Graves was also a leading actor in science fiction films in the 1950s. He spoke with bible-quoting Martians in the 1952 Cold War thriller Red Planet Mars, and battled bug-eyed aliens in Killers from Space in 1954. He fended off a creepy Venusian invader in the Roger Corman cult classic It Conquered the World in 1956, and saved the country from gigantic grasshoppers in 1957’s Beginning of the End.

He was born Peter Aurness in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on March 18, 1926. He served in the United States Army Air Force near the end of World War II.

He followed his brother, actor and future Gunsmoke star Jim Arness, to Hollywood in the late 1940s,
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