Herbert Marshall Poster


Jump to: Overview (5) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (5) | Trivia (9)

Overview (5)

Born in London, England, UK
Died in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, California, USA  (heart attack)
Birth NameHerbert Brough Falcon Marshall
Nickname Bart
Height 6' (1.83 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Herbert Marshall had trained to become a certified accountant, but his interest turned to the stage. He lost a leg while serving in World War I, he was rehabilitated with a wooden leg. This did not stop him from making good his decision to make the stage as his vocation. He used a very deliberate square-shouldered and guided walk - largely unnoticeable - to cover up his disability. He spent 20 years in distinguished stage work in London before films. He almost made the transition from stage directly to sound movies except for one silent film, Mumsie (1927), produced in Great Britain. His wonderful mellow, baritone British accent rolled out with a minimum of mouth movement and a nonchalant ease that stood out as unique. His rather blasé demeanor could take on various nuances - without overt emotion - to fit any role he played, whether sophisticated comedy or drama - and the accent fit just as well. He filled the range from romantic lead, with several sympathetic strangers thrown in, to dignified military officer to doctor to various degrees of villainy - his unemotional delivery meshing with the cold, impassive criminal character.

He was almost 40 when he appeared in his first picture in Hollywood, The Letter (1929), a worthwhile comparison (but for the primitive sound recording) with the more famous second version (The Letter (1940)) with Bette Davis. Marshall is the murder victim in 1929 and the betrayed husband in 1940. He was heavily in demand in the 1930s, sometimes in five or six pictures a year. Perhaps his best suave comedic role was in Trouble in Paradise (1932), the first non-musical sound comedy by producer/director Ernst Lubitsch - to some, Lubitsch's greatest film. That same year, Marshall did one of his most warmly human, romantic roles in the marvelously erotic Blonde Venus (1932), with the captivating Marlene Dietrich.

Through the 40s, his roles were of a more character variety but substantial. He was deviously subtle as the pre-World War II peace leader actually working against peace for a veiled foreign power (Germany) in Foreign Correspondent (1940). The film was one of Alfred Hitchcock 's earliest Hollywood films and, definitely, an under-rated adventure/thriller. Who could forget Marshall's small but standout performance as "Scott Chavez", who at the beginning of Duel in the Sun (1946) - with typical Marshall nonchalance - calmly shoots his cantina entertainer/Indian wife for her cheating ways? By the 50s, Marshall was doing fewer movies, but still a variety. His voice was perfect to lend credence to some early sci-fi classics like Riders to the Stars (1954) and Gog (1954) and the The Fly (1958). But he was also busy honing his considerable talent with various early-TV playhouse programs. He also fit comfortably into episodic TV including a rare five-episode run as a priest on 77 Sunset Strip (1958). All told, Herbert Marshall graced nearly 100 movie and TV roles with an aplomb that remains a rich legacy.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: William McPeak

Spouse (5)

Dee Anne Kahmann (25 April 1960 - 22 January 1966) (his death)
Boots Mallory (3 August 1947 - 1 December 1958) (her death)
Elizabeth Roberta (Lee) Russell (27 February 1940 - 10 January 1947) (divorced) (1 child)
Edna Best (26 February 1928 - 7 February 1940) (divorced) (1 child)
Mollie Maitland (1915 - 1928) (divorced)

Trivia (9)

Father of Sarah Marshall.
Herbert Marshall had one wooden leg, the right, which was kept a secret to the public for most of his career. He lost his leg in action during WWI.
Portrayed British intelligence agent Ken Thurston on CBS (1944-1948) and NBC Radio's (1950-1952) "The Man Called X."
Brother-in-law of Joan Mallory.
Ex-father-in-law of Mel Bourne.
Grandfather of Timothy M. Bourne.
Biography in "Bad Boys: The Actors of Film Noir" by Karen Burroughs Hannsberry.
According to Cecil B. DeMille, while filming a fight scene in Hawaii with Marshall and another actor, the scene was perfect except for the final blow, which Marshall was supposed to throw. Marshall hesitated and when asked why he stated "Mr. DeMille I just cannot bring myself to hit a man full in the face." Source, 6/22/1936 Lux Radio Theater broadcast of "Dark Angel".
Was in four Oscar Best Picture nominees: Foreign Correspondent (1940), The Letter (1940), The Little Foxes (1941) and The Razor's Edge (1946).

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