Darby Hinton was born in Santa Monica California August 19th, 1957 to actor Ed Hinton, from Wilmington NC, and his school teacher wife, Marilynn Hinton from Chicago. The Hinton name goes back through early American history even crossing through Daniel Boone’s family tree, while Marilynn’s parents both immigrated from Germany in their youth.
Darby started his long acting career at the tender age of 6 months old and he hasn’t stopped since. His first appearance was on ‘Play House 90’ followed by commercials and many of the classic TV shows back then. Like, ‘Mr. Ed,’ ‘Wagon Train,’ ‘Route 66’ & The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet.
Darby’s film career didn’t start until he was 4 years old when he was featured in a film called ‘Hero’s Island’. Working with the likes of Harry Dean Stanton, Rip Torn, Neville Brand. and James Mason. Followed by Disneys ‘Son of Flubber.’ Just before turning 6, Darby landed the plumb role of playing Fess Parker’s son ‘Israel Boone’ on the hugely popular ‘The Daniel Boone Show’ which ran for 6 seasons and had a Thursday night viewing audience of 30 million by it’s 4th season. The show still has millions of loyal fans and lives on in reruns attracting even more fans today.
After ‘Boone’ ended, Darby tried to shake the all American image by playing a drug user on, ‘The Bold Ones: The New Doctors,’ a troubled youth on ‘Owen Marshall, Counselor at Law’ even a drug dealer on Jack Lord’s, ‘Hawaii Five-0.’ But everybody still loved and knew him as ‘Israel’. Darby then decided to take time off and focus on education, since most of his had been on set with a studio teacher. He left Hollywood and graduated High School from, The American School in Switzerland. He then started his College experience completing 3 around the world voyages aboard the SS Universe while attending World Campus Afloat. Where he was able to study theatre, and actors, around the word. From Indonesian Shadow Dance, Noh & Kabuki Theatre, to the classic Greek & Roman Tragedies, all in their place of origin. When his academic voyages ended he went right back to work, with featured roles on, ‘Magnum, P.I.,’ ‘The Fall Guy,’ ‘Hunter’ and ‘Mike Hammer’ to name a few.
Darby took great pleasure in honing his craft over the years with great acting coaches like, Milton Katsales, Howard Fine, Larry Moss, Corey Allen, and the wonderful Joan Darling, even studying and performing with, ‘The Groundlings’
Darby continued his film work as well, from martial arts films in the Philippines to a detective in Malibu that couldn’t shoot straight in the cult classic, ‘Malibu Express.’ He did a number of other features as well, at home and abroad. They took him to places like Russia, Romania, Bulgaria. When he started his family however, he decided to look for more steady work closer to home. He became the Probation Officer on ‘Days Of Our Lives,’ and eventually became ‘The Salem Rapist’ during some of the shows highest ratings. With more kids, came more responsibilities, and not having a real father growing up, (His father was killed in a plane crash when he was 14 months old), Darby wanted to be there for his kids, to help them and watch them grow. But… he still loved acting. So, he started just pursuing commercials and theatre close to home. That lead him to a role based on Charles Doheny for Theatre 40’s, ‘The Manor.’ A play he has stared in for the last 16 years, performing to sold out audiences in the real 1920s Doheny estate, ‘Greystone,’ in Beverly Hills.
Having spent a life time studying, characters, people, and human nature, to be able to portray the vastly different characters he has over the decades, Darby felt it also important, and fascinating, to study with some of the master teachers in the world of spirituality and human nature. Teachers like Wayne Dyer, Julia Cameron, Jim Rohn, Brian Tracy, Jack Canfield to name a few and even ended up traveling around as a ‘Master Trainer’ with Tony Robbins, helping Tony get thousands to walk across hot burning coals.
As soon as the youngest of his 5 children left home to be a ski instructor in New Zealand, Darby started focusing on his acting career again and has since got to portray some memorable historical characters; Like David Burnet, 1st president of Texas in, ‘Texas Rising.’ George Donner in, ‘The Donner Party – Dead of Winter,’ and his most recent role, Cole Younger in, ‘Bill Tilghman and The Outlaws.’ due out in late 2018.
Along with these and other acting roles Darby is also proud to be an advocate for child performers everywhere, having been on the ‘SAG-AFTRA Young Performer’s Committee,’ a long time member of, ‘A Minor Consideration’. and since it’s very conception in 2003, being on the advisory committee for ‘Looking Ahead’. A non profit that helps young performers and their families thrive and avoid pitfalls due to the unique challenges of working in the entertainment industry, with the motto: Grow, Give Back, and Have Fun!!
As much as he loves acting, Darby feels his work with these organizations might be some of his most important work, having lost so many fellow young performers and friends to some of those pitfalls along the way.
Darby has also now written a successful book documenting, with over 500 pictures, his early years in the Business, his love of acting, and mostly what it was like: ‘Growing Up Israel.’ For more information you can visit his website.
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