Hal Needham - Famous Inventor

Hal Needham Net Worth


The Famous American stuntman and director, Hal Needham had a net worth of $2 million at the time of his death in 2013. Needham’s outstanding skills and expertise in the field of action cinema led him to create some of the most iconic films like β€˜Smokey and the Bandit’ and β€˜The Cannonball Run.’

Key facts:

  • Hal Needham was an American stuntman and director known for his daring and innovative stunts.
  • He worked as a stuntman on a wide range of projects throughout the 60s, and served as a regular stunt double for Clint Eastwood and Burt Reynolds.
  • Hal Needham revolutionized the field of stunt work by introducing several innovative techniques and devices, including the Shotmaker Elite camera car and crane that became industry standards.
  • He transitioned to directing in the mid-197s with his film 'Smokey and the Bandit,' which was a commercial success and spawned several sequels.
  • In 2012, Hal Needham received an honorary Academy Award for his pioneering work in improving stunt safety measures and was renowned for his philanthropy work through establishing the Hal Needham Life Enhancement Award.

Basic Information About Hal Needham

CategoryCelebrities β€Ί Actors
ProfessionsScreenwriter, Actor, Film director, Stunt Performer, Inventor
Net worth$2,000,000
Date of birth1931-03-06
Place of birthMemphis
Date of death2013-10-25 (aged 82)
NationalityUnited States of America
Curiosities and TrademarksHis films feature many stunts (car chases, fights, etc)
Usually ends his films by showing outtakes during the credits
Often cast Burt Reynolds.
Spouse31 December - Ellyn Wynne Williams (Β 1996 - 25 OctoberΒ 2013)Β (his death)
Dani Crayne - (29 JuneΒ 1981 - 1987)Β (divorced)
21 May - Arlene R. Wheeler. (Β 1960 - 1977)Β (divorced)
Social Mediaβ†—οΈŽ Wikipedia β†—οΈŽ IMDb

What Movie Awards did Hal Needham win?


Golden Globe

Golder Raspberry


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Hal Needham roles

Movie / Series Role
Blazing SaddlesOutlaw (uncredited)
Smokey and the BanditDirector
Smokey and the BanditWriter
McLintock!Carter (uncredited)
The Cannonball RunDirector
The Cannonball RunAmbulance EMT (uncredited)
In Harm's WayAirman in the Blue Lagoon (uncredited)
The Great RaceSaloon Brawler (uncredited)
The Devil's BrigadeThe Sergeant
4 for TexasThomas Worker (uncredited)
Cannonball Run IIDirector
Cannonball Run IIWriter
Cannonball Run IIPorsche 928 Driver with Cowboy Hat (uncredited)
The VillainDirector
The War WagonHite
The UndefeatedYankee Corporal at River Crossing (uncredited)
MegaforceTechnician (uncredited)
LaredoCole 1 episode, 1965
The VirginianBounty Hunter / ... 4 episodes, 1962-1968
Mission: ImpossibleMork (uncredited) unknown episodes
MannixArnie / ... 1 episode, 1970-1975
Simon & SimonOldtimer #3 in Saloon (uncredited) unknown episodes
Combat!Brawler (uncredited) unknown episodes
The Wild Wild WestAssailant / ... (uncredited) unknown episodes
Fantasy IslandOrville 'Boots' Pierce 1 episode, 1979
CybillSelf 1 episode, 1995

Hal Needham's Quotes

  • [on Burt Reynolds] Burt's a very private person. And he has the capacity for loyalty and caring. Here's a man who has made it okay and he forgets no one he's ever cared for -- men or women. He certainly has tried to keep me from breaking my neck in all the years I've been doubling him.
  • [on being the stuntman for John Wayne in In Harm's Way (1965)] Otto [Otto Preminger] treated the cast like they were dirt, except Wayne. The crew hated him. I thought, 'If I ever become a director, I don't ever want to do that crud. Yeah, I learned a lot of things from those big, big directors. And a lot of it was what I didn't want to do.

The Life and Legacy of Hal Needham: From Stuntman to Director

Hal Needham was a legendary American stuntman and director who became famous for his daring stunts and innovative techniques in the film industry. Over the course of his decades-long career, he made significant contributions to the art form of stunts, became a pioneer in improving stunt safety measures, and directed some of the most successful and exciting action-comedy films of all time.

What is Hal Needham known for?

Needham is best known for his pioneering work as a stuntman in Hollywood movies. Some of his most famous stunts were performed in hit movies such as β€˜How the West Was Won’ and β€˜Little Big Man,’ showcasing his remarkable range and fearlessness.

Aside from his impressive on-screen performances, Needham also introduced several innovative techniques that helped revolutionize the field of stunt work. Most notably, he invented the Shotmaker Elite camera car and crane, which became industry standards for capturing dynamic action sequences.

In addition to his stunts, Needham was also a prolific director. Having worked with some of Hollywood’s most prominent stars, including Clint Eastwood and Burt Reynolds, he quickly became known for his comedic yet action-heavy style. The classic hit film β€˜Smokey and the Bandit’ is a great example of Needham’s incredible ability to blend humor and thrilling action into one exciting story.

Early life and education

Needham was born in Memphis, Tennessee, and served in the US Army as a paratrooper during the Korean War. After his military service ended, he began his journey into Hollywood’s film industry by working as an actor and model. It wasn’t long before he transitioned into the world of stunts.

Needham spent several years honing his craft, working under famed stuntman Chuck Roberson – who was John Wayne’s longtime stuntman – and performing stunts for a wide range of major stars in the 60s.


Needham broke into directing after his innovation in stunts gained considerable traction. His first directorial efforts were notably successful – for example, β€œSmokey and the Bandit” was a box office sensation. The film, which starred Needham’s close friend Burt Reynolds, spawned several sequels and established Needham’s name as a key player in the action-comedy genre.

Needham continued his winning streak as a director with other hits, including β€˜Hooper’ and β€˜The Cannonball Run.’ A signature feature of his directing style was the heavy influence of physical comedy alongside thrilling car chase scenes.


Hal Needham passed away on October 25, 2013, at the age of 82 from cancer. Nonetheless, his incredible contributions to the world of cinematography are deeply embedded into the industry as he remains an influential figure to this day.


Needham received many accolades throughout his illustrious career. Among his notable recognitions includes an honorary Academy Award in 2012 for his influence in improving stunt safety measures via innovative techniques that he introduced in the field.

To support other stunt performers in need, Needham also established the Hal Needham Life Enhancement Award, an award that aids performers dealing with physical injuries or financial troubles.

Net Worth Details

At the time of needham’s death in 2013, he had built up a net worth of about $2 million. His years of innovation and contribution existed at the height of Hollywood’s economic peak mentioned that helped to scale wealth and heighten societal significance of many Hollywood gears towards digital technologies and innovation.

In conclusion, Hal Needham was a legendary figure in the entertainment industry, whose impact on the industry will be long-lasting. His work and achievements, particularly in stunts and action-comedy movies, have influenced many other filmmakers looking to create high-octane and stunt-driven feature films. Although he passed away nearly a decade ago, he continues to live on in his remarkable legacy and enduring contributions to action cinema.

Interesting Facts about Hal Needham

  1. Doubled for Burt Reynolds, Christopher George, and Richard Boone.
  2. Billboard model for Viceroy Cigarettes.
  3. When he began directing, his films were usually blasted by the critics but did well at the box office. He once took out an ad in the trade papers quoting his negative reviews but showing a wheelbarrow filled with money to sum up his career.
  4. Served in the U.S. Army as a paratrooper.
  5. Former father-in-law of Connie Needham.
  6. Father of David Needham.
  7. Grandfather of Taylor Needham and Kimberly Needham.
  8. Hal Needham first met Burt Reynolds in 1959 when Reynolds was starring in the TV Series, Riverboat (1959). Needham had been hired to be Burt's stunt double and the two formed a lifelong friendship from there.

Hal Needham Famous Network

Male Actors ♂️ With Net Worth Closest To $2,000,000

Female Actors ♀️ With Net Worth Closest To $2,000,000

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