George Hamilton in spotlight, looking for a tan

Wed Feb 15, 2012 5:46pm EST
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By Steve Ginsburg

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - George Hamilton moves from story to story, one more outrageous than the next.

There is no theme to tie them together but he's having such a good time telling them, you just let him roll on.

"I'm on the Concorde flying from London with Kirk Douglas and he says, 'George, I've never seen you this pale. I don't even know you.' So I go into the bathroom with this bronzer and I put on a coat every half hour.

"Three and half hours later we're in New York and I'm looking like Sidney Poitier. Kirk looks at me and says, 'You're the darkest person I've ever seen. How did that happen?' I said, 'Tricks of the trade, pal.'"

Whether he's talking about his trademark tan, his rich history with Hollywood's elite, or his most recent role on tour with stage show "La Cage Aux Folles," Hamilton commands the spotlight.

He laughs, he waves his hands, and rarely completes three sentences without launching into a story so improbable, it's hard to tell if he's serious.

Hamilton bursts into a yarn about playing cards with poker champions Pug Pearson and Doyle Brunson, saying he was so nervous his body language would reveal his hand, that he never looked at his cards.

"Well, I won once or twice because they didn't know what I had. Then again I didn't either!" he said sporting a wide grin backstage at Washington's Kennedy Center, where "La Cage" just completed a run.   Continued...

Actor George Hamilton laughs before accepting a star on the Walk of Fame in Hollywood, California August 12, 2009. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni