Rod Taylor always seemed to me like some kind of cultivated Irishman, but of course he was Australian. He had a classy, well-bred vibe during his peak leading-man period, which lasted…well, really only about six or seven years. Or from the time he was 30 until 36 or 37. If you want to be strict about it Taylor had two big starring roles, H.G. Wells in The Time Machine (’60) and the slightly rakish Mitch Brenner in Alfred Hitchcock‘s The Birds (’63)…and that was pretty much it in terms of class-A movies I can remember. He played a character roughly based on playwright Sean O’Casey in Jack Cardiff and John Ford‘s Young Cassidy (’65)…which I’ve never seen. Taylor was also in a lot of crap — A Gathering of Eagles (1963), The V.I.P.s (1963), Sunday in New York (1963), Fate Is the Hunter (1964), 36 Hours (1965), The Liquidator (1965), Do Not Disturb (1965), The Glass Bottom Boat (1966) Hotel (1967). The last good thing he did during his peak theatrical period was play a slick businessman in Michelangelo Antonioni‘s Zabriskie Point (1970). He mostly worked on the tube in the ’70s and ’80s. What counts is that he made it big, mattered for a while, enjoyed the ride and made a fine, robust impression. And now that he’s gone people are thinking about him…all over the world.