Published January 14, 2015
Nearly 50 years after he captivated the public as Bret Maverick, television's first cowardly cowboy hero, James Garner (search) will receive the Screen Actors Guild's Life Achievement Award.
Garner, 76, also won an Emmy as Jim Rockford, the laconic, underachieving private eye on television's long-running 1970s hit "The Rockford Files," (search) and was nominated for an Oscar as the small-town pharmacist who befriends single mom Sally Field (search) in the 1985 film "Murphy's Romance."
He will be honored at SAG's Feb. 5 awards ceremony, which will air live on TNT.
"James Garner is more than just one of America's finest actors," said SAG President Melissa Gilbert. "He is a man who has served his peers, his community and his country with integrity and quiet generosity."
Garner has served three terms on SAG's board.
He played an astronaut opposite Clint Eastwood in "Space Cowboys," the president in "My Fellow Americans" and God in the animated TV series "God, the Devil and Bob."
He first gained fame as the Western card shark who never met a gunfighter he wasn't afraid to run from in the hit 1950s series "Maverick." He played an older, more settled version of the character in a 1981 version of the TV show, and was Marshal Zane Cooper opposite Mel Gibson's Maverick in the 1994 film version.
Garner joined the cast of ABC's "8 Simple Rules" last year after the show's star, John Ritter, died of a heart ailment.