Larry Hagman Never Considered Quitting Dallas Despite Cancer Battle; The Origins Of J.R. Explained

Larry Hagman passed away on Friday due to complications from his battle with cancer, but he never considered dropping out of the “Dallas” reboot when he was first diagnosed.

Back in May, the actor told’s Laura Saltman that despite his diagnosis, the show had to go on.

“No,” Larry laughed, after Laura asked if he thought of just fighting his cancer and skipping out on TNT’s “Dallas” series. “Well, I’d made the commitment before we found out and when we found out, they made allowances for it. They gave me a lot of time off. You don’t get too many chances of pulling ‘Dallas’ back together again.”

“I’m an actor, honey,” he added. “I gotta do it. You may have pneumonia, but you go on stage anyhow.” (Click HERE to watch that interview.)

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Playing one of TV’s most famous villains once again was a huge draw for the star to return to Southfork.

Correspondent Jill Martin visited the set of “Dallas” in 2011 for Access Hollywood and while Hagman’s co-stars said he had little in common with the legendary character, the actor wasn’t so sure.

“I must have something in common. I do it so well,” he said. (Watch our interview with Hagman on the set of “Dallas” Season 1, by clicking HERE.)

Hagman went on to explain that the inspiration for the character came from someone he met when he was just a teenager.

“I modeled the character on a guy I knew that I worked for when I was 15 years old. His father had four boys and when he died, everything went to the struggle that these four guys were gonna do to get the mettle to run the company,” Hagman continued. “One guy did and I modeled my character after him. His name is Jess Hall Jr. and he just passed away [in 2010] — about 90 or something like that. Great guy and I worked for him for about two years and he just implanted this story of J.R. into me and when this role came around, I just went right straight to it. I knew exactly what to do.”

Click HERE to share your memories of Larry Hagman on Access Hollywood’s Facebook page.

-- Jolie Lash

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