Newman is married, a father and a movie star.
Murphy is a bachelor, not a parent and is aiming for video stardom.
He is an individualist who lives in a two-room apartment, refuses to cook in his kitchen alcove, and uses his living room as an office to handle fan mail, scripts and business matters.
The youthful actor rented his modest quarters furnished in what he calls cheap motel plastic.
To add a person touch Ben purchased some rugs for the floor and built bookcases and a desk from planks and bricks. The resultant decor will never make the cover of House Beautiful. But that isn't what Ben had in mind anyhow.
"I don't entertain at home at all," he says, "which has been my downfall with more than one good-looking girl,. When I have asked a date over to watch television or something she takes one look at my apartment and figures I'm not good husband material."
That suits Ben Murphy. He isn't one to rush into marriage.
When the ABC-TV show is in production Ben is up at 6 a.m. to concoct a healthfood eye-opener. It consists of a pineapple-coconut base blended with buttermilk, soybean and meat protein powder, liquid vitamin C and wheatgerm oil.
He drinks down the mixture without gagging.
In the makeup room at Universal studios he enjoys a breakfast of bacon and eggs.
After a day's work Ben is reluctant to return to his splendiferous home. Instead he hangs around the studio, watching the film editor put the show together.
For dinner he almost always stops by a health-food restaurant not far from his home--he digs organic specialities--and then, when he can avoid it no longer, Ben is off to bed.
Ben spends his weekends resting, reading the papers and making half-hearted attempts to clean up his apartment.
His annual 10-week hiatus from the show is devoted to skiing, tennis and promotional projects for the series. He gives interviews and poses for photographers.
Ben admits he has made no commitments of any kind. he doesn't even want the reponsibility [sic] of owning a pet. "That day will come soon enough," he says.
Meanwhile he is saving his money to buy a ranch in Southern California or Arizona where he eventually hopes to make his permanent residence.
He isn't bothered anymore by the constant reminder that he resembles Paul Newman.
"I just hang loose," Murphy says, grinning.
One gets the feeling that Ben believes
Newman resembles him rather than the other way around.
Back to Articles List