Tag Teams - Seamless Transitions

Actors/Actresses passing the baton. Generation to generation sometimes one actor seems to pick up right where another left off -- sometimes with an overlap, sometimes after a gap. More than just a similar "type," these people are remarkably like their predecessors. All-Time. Alphabetically (by the original).

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1.
Edward Arnold
Edward Arnold was born as Gunther Edward Arnold Schneider in 1890, on the Lower East Side of New York City, the son of German immigrants, Elizabeth (Ohse) and Carl Schneider. Arnold began his acting career on the New York stage and became a film actor in 1916. A burly man with a commanding style and superb baritone voice...
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2.
Dan Seymour
Actor, Key Largo
Dan attended Senn High School in Chicago and graduated from the University of Chicago with a B.S. in Fine Arts. While in college, he worked in many school plays and also worked at night as an emcee at various Chicago night clubs becoming quite successful. He moved to Hollywood where his rotund build (265 pounds)...
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3.
Robert Middleton
Despite the fact that hefty, beetle-browed character actor Robert Middleton (born Samuel G. Messer) was known for most of his career as a mop-faced villain capable of the most vicious and contemptible of crimes, the man himself was quite a happy and hearty gent who loved to play practical jokes, particularly on his family...
 
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6.
Ted Cassidy
Ted Cassidy was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and raised in Philippi, West Virginia. He was a well respected actor who portrayed many different characters during his film and television career. His most notable role was Lurch, the faithful butler on the television series The Addams Family. His most memorable dialogue as Lurch would be...
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7.
Carel Struycken
Carel Struyken was born in the Hague, The Netherlands. When he was four years old his family moved to Curacao, an island in the Caribbean. At age sixteen, he returned to his country, where he finished high school. He graduated from the directing program at the film school in Amsterdam, following which he did a year at the American Film Institute in Los Angeles...
 
8.
Jeffrey DeMunn
Jeffrey DeMunn was born on April 25, 1947 in Buffalo, New York. He studied in England at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School, then returned to America and was a member of the National Shakespeare Company. He has starred in many theatre productions, both on and off Broadway, including "K2" (for which he received a Tony Award nomination for Best Actor), "Spoils of War" and "Comedians"...
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10.
Marie Dressler
Once you saw her, you would not forget her. Despite her age and weight, she became one of the top box office draws of the sound era. She was 14 when she joined a theater group and she went on to work on stage and in light opera. By 1892, she was on Broadway and she later became a star comedienne on the vaudeville circuit...
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11.
Marjorie Main
Her father was a minister, and when she joined a local stock company as a youngster she changed her name to avoid embarrassing her family. She worked in vaudeville and debuted on Broadway in 1916. Her film debut was in A House Divided. She repeated her stage role in Dead End as Baby Face Martin (Humphrey Bogart)'s mother...
 
12.
Douglas Fairbanks
Douglas Fairbanks was born Douglas Elton Thomas Ullman in Denver, Colorado, to Ella Adelaide (Marsh) and Hezekiah Charles Ullman, an attorney. His paternal grandparents were German Jewish immigrants, while his mother was from an Anglo family from the South. He was raised by his mother, who had separated from his father when he was five...
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13.
Douglas Fairbanks Jr.
Although he appeared in approximately 100 movies or TV shows, Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. never really intended to take up acting as a career. However, the environment he was born into and the circumstances naturally led him to be a thespian. Noblesse oblige. He was born Douglas Elton Fairbanks, Jr. in New York City...
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14.
Errol Flynn
Errol Flynn was born to parents Theodore Flynn, a respected biologist, and Marrelle Young, an adventurous young woman. Young Flynn was a rambunctious child who could be counted on to find trouble. Errol managed to have himself thrown out of every school he was enrolled in. In his late teens he set out to find gold...
 
15.
Leo Genn
Actor, Moby Dick
Leo Genn was the son of a successful jewelry merchant Woolfe (William) Genn and his wife Rachel Asserson. He attended the City of London School as a youth and went on to study law at Cambridge. He received his law degree as a qualified barrister (which in English law tradition is a lawyer who is a specialist in law and who appears in court as representative of a client...
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16.
Jeremy Northam
Actor, The Net
Jeremy Philip Northam was born in Cambridge, England to parents John and Rachel, both university professors. John Northam is best known for his translations of Henrik Ibsen. The family moved to Bristol, in 1972, where Jeremy attended Bristol Grammar School. Jeremy graduated from Bedford College, University of London...
 
17.
Cary Grant
Once told by an interviewer, "Everybody would like to be Cary Grant", Grant is said to have replied, "So would I." Cary Grant was born Archibald Alexander Leach in Horfield, Bristol, England, to Elsie Maria (Kingdon) and Elias James Leach, who worked in a factory. His early years in Bristol would have been an ordinary lower-middle-class childhood...
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18.
Pierce Brosnan
Actor, GoldenEye
Pierce Brendan Brosnan was born in Drogheda, County Louth, Ireland, to May (Smith), a nurse, and Thomas Brosnan, a carpenter. He lived in Navan, County Meath, until he moved to England, UK, at an early age (thus explaining his ability to play men from both backgrounds convincingly). His father left the household when Pierce was a child and although reunited later in life...
 
19.
Sydney Greenstreet
Actor, Casablanca
Sydney Greenstreet's father was a leather merchant with eight children. Sydney left home at age 18 to make his fortune as a Ceylon tea planter, but drought forced him out of business and back to England. He managed a brewery and, to escape boredom, took acting lessons. His stage debut was as a murderer in a 1902 production of "Sherlock Holmes"...
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23.
Danny Glover
Actor, producer and humanitarian Danny Glover has been a commanding presence on screen, stage and television for more than 25 years. Glover was born in San Francisco, California, to Carrie (Hunley) and James Glover, postal workers who were also active in civil rights. Glover trained at the Black Actors' Workshop of the American Conservatory Theater...
 
24.
Edmund Gwenn
There are very few character actors from the 1930s, '40s or '50s who rose to the rank of stardom. Only a rare man or woman reached the level of renown and admiration, and had enough audience appeal, to be the first name in a cast's billing, a name that got marquee posting. Charles Coburn comes to mind, but there aren't many others. However, one who made it was Edmund Gwenn...
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25.
Richard Attenborough
Lord Richard Attenborough was born in Cambridge, England, the son of Mary (née Clegg), a founding member of the Marriage Guidance Council, and Frederick Levi Attenborough, a scholar and academic administrator who was a don at Emmanuel College and wrote a standard text on Anglo-Saxon law. Attenborough...
 
26.
Arthur Hill
Canadian-born actor Arthur Hill was raised in the Saskatchewan town of Melfort. The son of a lawyer, he served with the Royal Canadian Air Force during WWII before receiving his college education at the University of British Columbia. Intending on following in his father's footsteps in the field of law...
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27.
Josef Sommer
Actor, Witness
Josef Sommer is a classically trained stage actor who has also been a prolific performer in films. He made his debut at the age of nine in a production of "Watch on the Rhine" with the Carolina Playmakers in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. He trained as an actor at the American Shakespeare Festival in Stratford...
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29.
Leslie Howard
Leslie Howard Stainer was born in London, to Lilian (Blumberg) and Ferdinand "Frank" Steiner. His father was a Hungarian Jewish immigrant, and his English mother was of German Jewish, and mostly English, descent. Leslie went to Dulwich College. After school, he worked as a bank clerk until the outbreak of World War I...
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30.
Ronald Howard
The British actor Ronald Howard was born in Norwood, London, England, in 1918. He and his younger sister Leslie Ruth Howard were raised by their mother Ruth Evelyn Martin and their father, the renowned actor Leslie Howard. After college, Howard became a newspaper reporter for a while but decided to follow in his father's footsteps and become an actor...
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31.
Michael Wilding
Born in Leigh-on-Sea, Essex, England on July 23, 1912, Wilding became a commercial artist after leaving school. He gained employment in the art department of a film studio in London in 1933, and he was soon approached by producers to become a movie star-in-training due to his dashing good looks. After debuting at age 21 in Bitter Sweet...
 
32.
Peter Lorre
Actor, Casablanca
Peter was born in Rózsahegy, Hungary, to Alois and Elvira Löwenstein. He was educated in elementary and secondary schools in Vienna, Austria. He ran away from home when he was 17 and joined an improvised theater. In 1922, he worked as a bank clerk. Did bits with a company in Breslau, then secured a part in Galsworthy's "Society" in Zurich...
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33.
Ronald Lacey
Ronald Lacey was born on June 18, 1935 in the suburbs of London. He began his career in 1961 after a brief stint in the Royal service. He attended The London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts. His first notable performance was delivered at The Royal Court in 1962's "Chips With Everything". Lacey had...
 
34.
Carmen Miranda
Soundtrack, Radio Days
Carmen Miranda was born Maria do Carmo Miranda da Cunha on February 9, 1909, near Porto, Portugal, in the town of Marco de Canavezes. Not long after her birth her family moved to Brazil, where her father was involved in the produce business. The family settled in the then-capital city of Rio de Janeiro...
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36.
Sidney Poitier
A native of Cat Island, The Bahamas (though born in Miami during a mainland visit by his parents), Poitier grew up in poverty as the son of farmers Evelyn (Outten) and Reginald James Poitier, who also drove a cab. He had little formal education and at the age of 15 was sent to Miami to live with his brother...
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37.
Denzel Washington
Denzel Washington is an American actor and filmmaker. He has received three Golden Globe awards, a Tony Award, and two Academy Awards: Best Supporting Actor for the historical war drama film Glory (1989) and Best Actor for his role as a corrupt cop in the crime thriller Training Day (2001). Washington has received much critical acclaim for his film work since the 1990s...
 
38.
Will Rogers
World-famous, widely popular American humorist of the vaudeville stage and of silent and sound films, Will Rogers graduated from military school, but his first real job was in the livestock business in Argentina, of all places. He transported pack animals across the South Atlantic from Buenos Aires to South Africa for use in the Boer War (1899-1902)...
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39.
Will Rogers Jr.
Will Rogers Jr. was elected as a Democratic congressman for Southern California in 1942. Although he served only 17 months in congress, he is best remembered as the American politician who did the most to try and save the Jews of Europe during World War II. Rogers joined the Emergency Committee to Save the Jewish People of Europe in 1943...
 
40.
George Sanders
George Sanders was born of English parents in St. Petersburg, Russia. He worked in a Birmingham textile mill, in the tobacco business and as a writer in advertising. He entered show business in London as a chorus boy, going from there to cabaret, radio and theatrical understudy. His film debut, in 1936...
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41.
Matthew Macfadyen
David Matthew Macfadyen was born in Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, to Meinir (Owen), a drama teacher and actress, and Martin Macfadyen, an oil executive. He is of Scottish and Welsh descent. Because of his father's career, he spent at least part of his childhood in Indonesia, before finishing his education back in England and winning a place at RADA in 1992...
 
42.
Abraham Sofaer
Actor, Quo Vadis
Born on October 1, 1896, in Rangoon, Burma, to Burmese-Jewish parents, distinguished veteran character actor Abraham Sofaer was a one-time schoolteacher in both Rangoon and London. He switched gears to acting after a short time and made his stage debut as a walk-on in William Shakespeare's "The Merchant of Venice" in 1921...
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43.
Erick Avari
Actor, The Mummy
Erick Avari was born on April 13, 1952 in Darjeeling, India. His credits include leading roles in films from Kevin Reynolds' cult classic The Beast of War to commercial megahits such as Stargate, Independence Day, The Mummy and Planet of the Apes. His comedic skills have landed him starring roles in the Adam Sandler remake Mr. Deeds...
 
44.
Harry Dean Stanton
Actor, Alien
Prolific character actor Harry Dean Stanton's drooping, weather-beaten appearance and superb acting talent have been his ticket to appearing in over 100 films, and 50 TV episodes. Stanton was born in West Irvine, Kentucky, to Ersel (Moberly), a cook, and Sheridan Harry Stanton, a barber and tobacco farmer...
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45.
John Hawkes
John Hawkes was born John Marvin Perkins in Alexandria, Minnesota, to Patricia Jeanne (Olson) and Peter John Perkins, a farmer. He is of British and Scandinavian descent. John moved to Austin, Texas to begin his career as an actor and musician. He co-founded the Big State Productions Theatre Company and appeared in the group's original play...
 
46.
Arthur Treacher
Born Arthur Veary Treacher in Brighton, East Sussex, England, he was the son of a lawyer. He established a stage career after returning from World War I, and by 1928, he had come to America as part of a musical-comedy revue called Great Temptations. When his film career began in the early 1930s, Treacher was Hollywood's idea of the perfect butler...
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47.
Richard Deacon
Richard Deacon was the bald, bespectacled character actor most famous for playing television producer Mel Cooley on The Dick Van Dyke Show from 1961 to 1966. In the first season of that show he also continued to appear on the series he was already appearing on, Leave It to Beaver, playing Lumpy Rutherford's father Fred...
 
48.
Claire Trevor
Actress, Stagecoach
Claire Trevor was born Claire Wemlinger in the Bensonhurst section of Brooklyn, NY, the only child of Fifth Avenue merchant-tailor Noel Wemlinger, an immigrant Frenchman from Paris who lost his business during the Depression, and his Belfast-born wife Betty. Trevor's interest in acting began when she was 11 years old...
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49.
Gloria Grahame
Gloria Hallward, an acting pupil of her mother (stage actress and teacher Jean Grahame), acted professionally while still in high school. In 1944 Louis B. Mayer saw her on Broadway and gave her an MGM contract under the name Gloria Grahame. Her debut in the title role of Blonde Fever was auspicious...
 
50.
Robert Wagner
Robert John Wagner, Jr. was born in Detroit, Michigan, to Thelma Hazel Alvera (Boe), a telephone operator, and Robert John Wagner, Sr., a traveling salesman. His paternal grandparents were German and his maternal grandparents were Norwegian. His family moved to Los Angeles when he was seven. Always wanting to be an actor...
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53.
Michael Weatherly
Actor, NCIS
Michael Manning Weatherly, Jr. was born on July 8, 1968 in New York City, to Patricia (Hetherington) and Michael Manning Weatherly, Sr. Raised in Fairfield, CT, he left college to pursue a career in acting. He also had a great passion for music, and played in a band while pursuing his acting career...
 
54.
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56.
Dame May Whitty
Born Mary Whitty on June 19, 1865 to a Liverpool newspaper editor and his wife, she became known as May Whitty to the world. She first stepped on the London stage in 1882. She worked as an understudy at the St. James Theatre, and then, began playing leading roles when she joined a traveling stock company...
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57.
Margaret Rutherford
One is always at pains to locate a reference to Margaret Rutherford which does not characterize her as either jut-chinned, eccentric or both. But such, taken together, made for the charm of the woman. The combination of those most mundane of attributes has led some to suggest that she was made for the role of Agatha Christie's indomitable sleuth...
 
58.
William Atherton
Actor, Die Hard
William Atherton's career has spanned motion pictures, Broadway and television. He first achieved international recognition as the lead in Steven Spielberg's debut feature The Sugarland Express, and next starred in John Schlesinger's The Day of the Locust, Robert Wise's The Hindenburg and Richard Brooks' Looking for Mr. Goodbar...
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59.
Barry Pepper
Barry Robert Pepper was born on April 4, 1970, in Campbell River, British Columbia, Canada, as the youngest of three sons. He has two older brothers named Alex and Doug Pepper. The Peppers didn't stick around Campbell River for too long. They had been building a ship in their backyard for years. When Barry was five years old...
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60.
Damian Lewis
Actor, Homeland
Damian Lewis was born on February 11, 1971, in St. John's Wood, London, England, to Charlotte Mary (Bowater), from an upper-class background, and J. Watcyn Lewis, a city broker whose own parents were Welsh. He was raised on Abbey Road in London until the age of 8 with his siblings Gareth, William, and Amanda...