Amiable and handsome James Garner had obtained success in both films and television, often playing variations of the charming anti-hero/con-man persona he first developed in Maverick, the offbeat western TV series that shot him to stardom in the late 1950s.
James Garner was born James Scott Bumgarner in Norman, Oklahoma, to Mildred Scott (Meek) and Weldon Warren Bumgarner, a carpet layer. He dropped out of high school at 16 to join the Merchant Marines. He worked in a variety of jobs and received 2 Purple Hearts when he was wounded twice during the Korean War. He had his first chance to act when a friend got him a non-speaking role in the Broadway stage play "The Caine Mutiny Court Martial (1954)". Part of his work was to read lines to the lead actors and he began to learn the craft of acting. This play led to small television roles, television commercials and eventually a contract with Warner Brothers. Director David Butler saw something in Garner and gave him all the attention he needed when he appeared in The Girl He Left Behind. After co-starring in a handful of films during 1956-57, Warner Brothers gave Garner a co-starring role in the the western series Maverick. Originally planned to alternate between Bart Maverick (Jack Kelly) and Bret Maverick (Garner), the show quickly turned into the Bret Maverick Show. As Maverick, Garner was cool, good-natured, likable and always ready to use his wits to get him in or out of trouble. The series was highly successful, and Garner continued in it into 1960 when he left the series in a dispute over money.
In the early 1960s Garner returned to films, often playing the same type of character he had played on "Maverick". His successful films included The Thrill of It All, Move Over, Darling, The Great Escape and The Americanization of Emily. After that, his career wandered and when he appeared in the automobile racing movie Grand Prix, he got the bug to race professionally. Soon, this ambition turned to supporting a racing team, not unlike what Paul Newman would do in later years.
Garner found great success in the western comedy Support Your Local Sheriff!. He tried to repeat his success with a sequel, Support Your Local Gunfighter, but it wasn't up to the standards of the first one. After 11 years off the small screen, Garner returned to television in a role not unlike that in Support Your Local Sheriff!. The show was Nichols and he played the sheriff who would try to solve all problems with his wits and without gun play. When the show was canceled, Garner took the news by having Nichols shot dead, never to return in a sequel. In 1974 he got the role for which he will probably be best remembered, as wry private eye Jim Rockford in the classic The Rockford Files. This became his second major television hit, with Noah Beery Jr. and Stuart Margolin, and in 1977 he won an Emmy for his portrayal. However, a combination of injuries and the discovery that Universal Pictures' "creative bookkeeping" would not give him any of the huge profits the show generated soon soured him and the show ended in 1980. In the 1980s Garner appeared in few movies, but the ones he did make were darker than the likable Garner of old. These included Tank and Murphy's Romance. For the latter, he was nominated for both the Academy Award and a Golden Globe. Returning to the western mode, he co-starred with the young Bruce Willis in Sunset, a mythical story of Wyatt Earp, Tom Mix and 1920s Hollywood.
In the 1990s Garner received rave reviews for his role in the acclaimed television movie about corporate greed, Barbarians at the Gate. After that he appeared in the theatrical remake of his old television series, Maverick, opposite Mel Gibson. Most of his appearances after that were in numerous TV movies based upon The Rockford Files. His most recent films were My Fellow Americans and Space Cowboys .
With his blond, clean-cut, Ivy League handsomeness and ready-whipped smile reminiscent of Kennedyesque times, actor Bruce Davison fits the prototype of today's more current crop of fresh-faced, likable blonds such as Brian Kerwin and Aaron Eckhart. While it proved difficult at times for the actor to get past those perfect features and find meatier roles, his talent certainly overcame the "handicap". Extremely winning and versatile, the award-worthy actor, now enjoying an over four decade career, has included everything from Shakespeare to Seinfeld. He has also served as a writer, producer and director on an infrequent basis.
Born on June 28, 1946, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvanis, the son of Clair, an architect and musician, and Marian (Holman) Davison, a secretary, Bruce's parents divorced when he was just three. He developed a burgeoning interest in acting while majoring in art at Penn State and after accompanying a friend to a college theater audition. Making his professional stage debut in 1966 as Jonathan in "Oh Dad, Poor Dad, Mama's Hung You in the Closet and I'm Feelin' So Bad" at the Pennsylvania Festival Theatre, he had made it to Broadway within just a couple of years (1968) in the role of Troilus in "Tiger at the Gates" at the Vivian Beaumont Theatre. The year after that he was seen off-Broadway in "A Home Away from Home" and appeared at the Lincoln Center in the cast of "King Lear".
Success in the movies came immediately for the perennially youthful-looking actor after he and a trio of up-and-coming talents (Barbara Hershey [then known as Barbara Seagull], Richard Thomas and Catherine Burns) starred together in the poignant but disturbing coming-of-age film Last Summer. From this he was awarded a starring role opposite Kim Darby in The Strawberry Statement, an offbeat social commentary about 60s college radicalism, and in the cult horror flick Willard in which he bonded notoriously with a herd of rats.
Moving further into the 70s decade, his film load did not increase significantly as expected and the ones he did appear in were no great shakes. With the exception of his co-starring role alongside Burt Lancaster in the well-made cavalry item Ulzana's Raid and the powerful low-budget Short Eyes in which he played a child molester, Bruce was surprisingly ill-used or underused. Insignificant as the elder Patrick Dennis in the inferior Lucille Ball musical film version of Mame, he was just as overlooked in such movies as The Jerusalem File, Mother, Jugs & Speed, Grand Jury and Brass Target. Bruce wisely looked elsewhere for rewarding work and found it on the stage and on the smaller screen. Earning strong theatrical roles in "The Skin of Our Teeth," "The Little Foxes" and "A Life in the Theatre," he won the Los Angeles Drama Critics Award for his work in "Streamers" in 1977. On TV, he scored in mini-movie productions of Mourning Becomes Electra, Deadman's Curve (portraying Dean Torrence of the surf-era pop duo Jan and Dean) and, most of all, Summer of My German Soldier co-starring Kristy McNichol as a German prisoner of war in the American South who falls for a lonely Jewish-American girl. In 1972 Bruce married actress Jess Walton who appeared briefly as a college student in The Strawberry Statement and later became a daytime soap opera fixture. The marriage was quickly annulled the following year.
The 1980s was also dominated by strong theater performances. Bruce took over the role of the severely deformed John Merrick as "The Elephant Man" on Broadway; portrayed Clarence in "Richard III" at the New York Shakespeare Festival; was directed by Henry Fonda in "The Caine Mutiny Court Martial"; played a moving Tom Wingfield opposite Jessica Tandy's Amanda in "The Glass Menagerie"; received a second Los Angeles Drama Critics Award for his work in the AIDS play "The Normal Heart"; and finished off the decade gathering up fine reviews in the amusing A.R. Gurney period piece "The Cocktail Hour". While hardly lacking for work on film (Kiss My Grits, Crimes of Passion, Spies Like Us, and The Ladies Club), few of them made use of his talents and range. It was not until he was cast in the ground-breaking gay drama Longtime Companion that his film career revitalized. Giving a quiet, finely nuanced, painfully tender performance as the middle-aged lover and caretaker of a life partner ravaged by AIDS, Bruce managed to stand out amid the strong ensemble cast and earn himself an Oscar nomination for "Best Supporting Actor". Although he lost out to the flashier antics of Joe Pesci in the mob drama Goodfellas that year, Bruce was not overlooked -- copping Golden Globe, Independent Spirit, New York Film Critics and National Society of Film Critics awards. Other gay-themed films also welcomed his presence, including The Cure and It's My Party. The actor eventually served as a spokesperson for a host of AIDS-related organizations, including Hollywood Supports, and, elsewhere, is active with foundations that help children who are abused.
Bruce has been all over the screen since his success in Longtime Companion. Predominantly seen as mature, morally responsible dads and politicians, his genial good looks and likability have on occasion belied a weak or corrupt heart. Bruce married actress Lisa Pelikan in 1986 (well over a decade after his first marriage ended) and they have one son, Ethan, born in 1996. The handsome couple became well known around town and worked frequently together on stage ("The Downside," "Love Letters," "Breaking the Silence," "To Kill a Mockingbird") and in TV movies (Color of Justice). Bruce's more popular films these days have included Six Degrees of Separation starring Will Smith, the family adventure film Far from Home: The Adventures of Yellow Dog and the box-office hit X-Men and its sequel in the role of Senator Kelly. More controversial art-house showcases include Dahmer, as serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer's father, and Hate Crime, as a bigoted, murderous pastor.
Bruce has attempted TV series leads in later years. With Harry and the Hendersons, he ably directed a number of the show's episodes. He has also been tapped for recurring parts on The Practice and The L Word, and is fondly remembered for his comedy episodes on Seinfeld as an attorney who goes for George's (Jason Alexander) throat when George's fiancée dies inexplicably of toxic poisoning. The actor recently completed a TV series revival of Knight Rider.
Divorced from Lisa Pelikan, Bruce is married these days to third wife Michele Correy and has a daughter by her, Sophia, born in 2006. They live in the Los Angeles area.
Daniel Bernard Sweeney was born on November 14, 1961 in Shoreham, Long Island, New York. He got his start in the New York theatre with appearances in dozens of productions including a run on Broadway in "The Caine Mutiny Court Martial". He was selected by Francis Ford Coppola to star in the Vietnam era drama Gardens of Stone. This began a string of performances including Shoeless Joe Jackson in Eight Men Out, Dish Boggett in Lonesome Dove, Travis Walton in Fire in the Sky, and as Doug Dorsey the hockey player turned figure skater in the classic romantic comedy The Cutting Edge. His television work includes Strange Luck, C-16: FBI and Harsh Realm with appearances in Jericho, Crash, The Event, and the Emmy-winning Miss Rose White. He recently migrated to the other side of the camera to produce, direct and co-write the cult film Two Tickets to Paradise which won over a dozen awards at major film festivals.
Trained professionally at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts, a graduate of Dartmouth College, a Ph.D. in Dramatic Literature from Indiana University and, during his teaching days, a tenured Associate Professor, Stephen Macht is one of the best-educated working actors in America, today.
Stephen Robert Macht was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to Janette (Curlenjik) and Jerome Irving Macht. He is of Russian Jewish descent.
He starred as "Proctor" in "The Crucible", "Orsino" in "12th Night", and "Dunois" in "Saint Joan" at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival in Canada, where he was scouted and signed by Universal Television to come to Hollywood to begin his film career. Since then, he has played leading men in plays and dozens of television movies and feature films from "Yoni Netanyahu" in Raid on Entebbe to "Warwick" in Stephen King's Graveyard Shift, and from "Dan Lavetta" in The Immigrants to "David Keeler", Sharon Gless' love interest on Cagney & Lacey. He has recurred on Boston Public, Jack & Jill and Boomtown. Soap Opera Digest nominated Stephen as "2007 Villain of the Year, for Trevor Lasing", on General Hospital, a role he played through 2008.
Opposite Charlton Heston, Stephen played "King Henry VIII" in "A Man For All Seasons" at the Ahmansohn Theatre, and prosecutor "Challee" in "The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial" at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. He was "Henry II" in "Lion in Winter" at the Cleveland Playhouse and, most recently, "Lyman Felt" in Arthur Miller's "Ride Down Mt. Morgan" at the Will Geer Theatre in what Variety called "a juicy star turn, appropriate for a character defined as a recklessly sexual, splendidly hungry man".
Stephen taught at Smith College, was a tenured professor at Queens College in New York and has directed theatre and television in Los Angeles. Together with his wife, he is the father of actor Gabriel Macht, and of three other children, and also has eight grandchildren and counting. His greatest hobby and future plans are to provide a lot of entertainment for years to come. Through the years, Macht has participated in and supported various charitable causes, serving as an Honorary Board Member of the Parkinson's Resource Organization and its Master of Ceremonies for the past ten years. In 1981 and 1982, he was the original moderator of the Los Angeles Jewish Federation's JTV. He has been spokesman for the Jewish National Fund, M.C. for several Israeli Consulate functions and is a board member of The Center For Jewish Culture and Creativity under leadership of Ruth and John Rauch. In 2013 Stephen earned his M.A. in Jewish Studies at the Academy for the Jewish Religion, Ca. and is an ordained Chaplain. He officiates at weddings, baby namings, and funerals by private arrangement.
William Atherton's career has spanned motion pictures, Broadway and television. He first achieved international recognition as the leading man 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. He is known worldwide for what have become his signature film characters: the television reporter, Dick Thornburg in the action blockbusters Die Hard and Die Hard 2, the EPA official, Walter Peck in Ghostbusters, Professor Jerry Hathaway, the conniving professor in Real Genius and Dr. Noah Faulkner, the mad scientist in Bio-Dome. Among his more than 30 feature films are co-starring roles in John Landis' Oscar, Bill Duke's Hoodlum, Richard Pearce's No Mercy, Alan J. Pakula's The Pelican Brief, Costa-Gavras' Mad City and Edward Zwick's The Last Samurai.
On television, he has starred in numerous miniseries including the classic Western Centennial and headed the all-star cast in Malibu. His many made-for-TV movies include leading roles in TNT's production of Joan Didion's Broken Trust and his portrayal of Darryl F. Zanuck in HBO's Golden Globe winner Introducing Dorothy Dandridge. Atherton was a recurring series lead opposite Damien Lewis on NBC-TV's Life and portrayed Principal Reynolds in the last season of Lost.
Consistently honored for his work on the stage, Atherton has created roles on and off Broadway for many of America's leading playwrights. These include the title role in Joseph Papp's original production of David Rabe's "The Basic Training of Pavlo Hummel", the role of Ronnie in John Guare's "The House of Blue Leaves" and Bing Ring Ling in his "Rich and Famous". He also starred in the Broadway premiere of Arthur Miller's "The American Clock" and the Tony-winning revival of Herman Wouk's "The Caine Mutiny Court Martial". Among his more than 20 well-known productions are the acclaimed New York premieres of Franz Kafka's "The Castle" and Kressman Taylor's "Address Unknown". For his work on the stage, he has received the Drama Desk Award, the Outer Circle Critics Award, the Theatre World Award and nominations for an Obie and Chicago's Joseph Jefferson Award.
He has several upcoming films in production.
It would no doubt be a real shock to most people to discover that the rich baritone Bronx-like accent of great veteran character actor Lloyd Nolan was a product of the San Francisco streets--not the urban jungle of New York City. Nolan was born in the City by the Bay, and his father, James Nolan, was a successful shoe manufacturer of hard-working Irish stock. Lloyd caught the acting bug while at Santa Clara College (at the time, a junior college). He gained as much theatre experience as he could, attaining his AA in the process. Though he continued on to Stanford, he was still focused on acting and soon flunked out of that school, preferring to focus his attention on acting opportunities rather than studies. Forsaking his father and the family shoe business, Nolan went to sea on a freighter, which soon burned, and then headed south to Hollywood.
He continued to hone his acting skills by first taking up residence at the Pasadena Playhouse (1927). With his father's passing he was able to sustain himself on a small inheritance. Continuing at PP and elsewhere in stock for two years, he headed east to Broadway, where he landed a role in a musical revue, "Cape Cod Follies", in late 1929. He continued with two other similar roles through 1932 before breaking out with an acclaimed performance as less-than-wholesome small-town dentist Biff Grimes in the original hit play "One Sunday Afternoon" (1933). He would stay on for two more plays until mid-1934, when he headed back to Hollywood with heightened expectations of success in the movies. His voice and that rock-solid but somehow sympathetic face made Nolan someone with whom audiences could immediately identify, and ahead were over 150 screen appearances. Nolan didn't waste any time; he signed with Paramount and had five roles in 1935, getting the lead role in two and working with up-and-coming James Cagney and George Raft. In the next five years Nolan settled into his niche as a solid and versatile player in whatever he did. His genre was more "B", and he could play good guys and heavies with equal skill. The production values on some B-level efforts were every bit as good as those of "A" pictures. Everybody starting out did at least a few "B" pictures, and Nolan was doing quality work, even in pictures that are little-known--if known at all--today, pictures like King of Gamblers with Claire Trevor and King of Alcatraz. He was a mainstay at Paramount until 1940, competing with Warner Brothers in that studio's popular gangster films. Unlike better known Cagney and Humphrey Bogart across town, Nolan's bad and not-so-bad guys often had more depth, and again it was that face along with his verve and that distinctive voice that helped to bring it out.
The 1940s saw Nolan moving around within the studio system. He was taking on more familiar roles, such as private detective, government agent or police detective--tough and hardboiled but sympathetic and understanding at the same time--and World War II action heroes. He landed the role of "Mike Shayne" in the private-eye series from 20th Century-Fox--seven of them between 1940 and 1942. Nolan showed a surprising flair for comedy in this series, with a continuing stream of wisecracks along with the fisticuffs. The Shayne series was well received by both critics and audiences, but Nolan is best known during that period as one of the familiar faces of World War II action films. The first is, at least to this observer, the best, but probably least known--Manila Calling. It was a part of Hollywood's concerted effort to boost civilian morale during the war, with the subject being the Japanese invasion of the Philippines, its conquest and liberation, as center stage in the War in the Pacific. Most films dealt with both retreat and return later in the war years; this 1942 film was perhaps the first to deal with the beginning and hope for the future. Nolan is his usual reliable, get-things-done professional here, an ace communications technician trying to keep the radio airways open amid the onslaught of Japanese invaders. Of all the flag-waving messages given in so many WWII films, none is as stirring as Nolan's, who by the way gets the girl, Carole Landis. It's she who stays behind with him while the rest of the radio team escapes with bombs falling. Microphone in hand and in his best hardboiled monotone, Nolan spits out: "Manila calling, Manila calling - and I ain't no Jap!" Significantly, Nolan appeared in several other films dealing with the struggle in the Pacific, turning in a particularly strong performance in Bataan.
By 1950 Nolan was ready for television (nearly half of his career roles would tally on that side of the ledger). In addition to his series work, television in the 1950s also played a lot of Nolan's action films from the 1930s and 1940s, earning him a whole new generation of fans--kids who would sit for hours in front of the TV, watching not only current shows but "old" movies. Nolan appeared in many different genres on television, and he could be seen in everything from distinguished dramatic productions to variety and game shows, in addition to having his own series, including Martin Kane and Special Agent 7.
After having been away from Broadway for nearly 20 years, Nolan returned in early 1954 in the original production of the hit play "The Caine Mutiny Court Martial", in the pivotal role of the paranoid Captain Queeg. He spent a year in this production, to great critical acclaim. He repeated the role on television in a Ford Star Jubilee production in 1955. His TV roles kept him busy. It must have been fun for him when, at nearly 60 years of age, he played notorious Chicago gangster George Moran, aka "Bugs" Moran--who in real life was much younger than Nolan was at the time--on the popular The Untouchables, as well as appearing in five continuing episodes of the extremely popular 77 Sunset Strip series, and he appeared in other crime dramas playing, in one form or another, the kinds of roles he played on the big screen in the 1930s and 1940s.
In the 1970s, when cameo roles by older stars were becoming a popular means of luring people back to the theaters, Nolan was happy to oblige in box-office hits like Ice Station Zebra, Airport and Earthquake. When the same circumstances spread to episodic TV, Nolan was only too happy to be on hand. Most older actors--even those with good reputations--have a tendency to be a bit difficult, but Nolan was such a professional. His joy at still being able to work at the craft he loved was profound, almost childlike in enthusiasm. He never complained or claimed special privilege.
That was the measure of the man--what had been and what would continue to be. Unconventional in a natural sort of way was the norm for Lloyd Nolan. Call it keeping to one's dignity. He kept no Hollywood secrets, as was the fashion. He was very open about his autistic son. Into the 1980s and entering his 80s, Nolan still deftly handled a few final TV and screen roles, though his noted memory for lines began to fade and cue cards became necessary. He was inspired in his final film role as a retired actor, husband of showy, boozy has-been Maureen O'Sullivan and three individualistic daughters in Hannah and Her Sisters. It's a great role, and probably the most even and satisfying film effort of director Woody Allen.
Nolan's last role was a Murder, She Wrote TV episode with old friend Angela Lansbury. He still had not revealed his final secret--he was dying with lung cancer--which by then revealed itself just the same. Ravaged as he was by the disease, Lloyd Nolan--with the help of his friends and well-wishers--successfully wrapped his 156th professional acting performance before his passing. His was a life of quality commitment. Character and integrity--things increasingly rare in Hollywood--described Lloyd Nolan, plain and simple.
Barry Sullivan was born Patrick Barry Sullivan on August 29, 1912 in New York City. He was the seventh son of a seventh son, a birth order with mystical significance in Celtic families. While never a major movie star, he established himself as a well-known and highly regarded character lead and second lead in motion pictures and television in a career that lasted 50 years. Sullivan was one of those elite of actors who are always in demand until the day they decide to retire.
Legend has it that Sullivan was counseled to consider a life in the theater due to his height (6'3") and good looks. He was supporting himself as a theater usher and department store employee when made his Broadway debut in "I Want a Policeman" at the Lyceum Theatre in January of 1936. Unfortunately, the show lasted only 47 performances.
He had that certain something that makes casting directors take notice. In 1936, he appeared in three other plays on the Great White Way, the drama "St. Helena" and the comedies "All That Glitters" and "Eye On the Sparrow." All three were flops.
Sullivan finally appeared in a hit play when he transferred into the role of Bert Jefferson in The Man Who Came to Dinner by Moss Hart and George S. Kaufman. However the 1941-42 season brought three more flops: "Mr. Big," "Ring Around Elizabeth," and "Johnny 2 X 4."
Wisely, he stayed away from Broadway for a decade, when he again transferred into a hit, "The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial," taking over the role of Barney Greenwald from Henry Fonda. Sullivan was nominated for a Best Actor Emmy Award in 1955 when he reprised the role on The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial.
His last appearance on Broadway, in the original "Too Late the Phalarope" in 1956, was, true to his performance record, a flop. Barry Sullivan's talent was meant for the screen.
In the late 1930s, he gained movie acting experience in two-reel comedies produced by the Manhattan-based Educational Studios. After giving up on his Broadway career and moving to Hollywood, Sullivan appeared in an uncredited bit part in "The Green Hornet Strikes Again! (1941) at Universal before making his official film debut in the Chester Morris B-picture High Explosive (1943) at Paramount. His next picture was the western The Woman of the Town, which was released by United Artists that same year.
Barry Sullivan never broke through to become a major star -- some cineastes say he was too raffish to connect with a mass audience -- but he established himself firmly as a character lead and second lead. He excelled at roles in which he could play aggressive characters that highlighted his centered masculinity. His most notable roles in the early part of his movie career were as the eponymous The Gangster (one of his leads), Tom Buchanan in the Alan Ladd version of The Great Gatsby (second lead), and as the movie director in The Bad and the Beautiful as part of a first rate ensemble.
He had his own TV series Harbormaster in 1957-58 and The Tall Man in 1960-62. A decade later, his acting skills were used to fine effect in two prestigious productions of stage plays (when television still provided such entertainment), as George C. Scott's brother in the Emmy Award-winning TV adaptation of Arthur Miller's The Price and the amoral patriarch in Lillian Hellman's Another Part of the Forest.
He continued acting in movies until 1977, rounding off a near 40-year movie career with an appearance in Oh, God!. He continued to appear periodically on television until retiring in 1980.
Barry Sullvian was married three times and fathered three children, Johnny and Jenny Sullivan by his first wife, and Patsy Sullivan-Webb by his second wife Gita Hall. The Sullivan talent has run into three generations. Jenny Sullivan became an actress and a playwright, writing the drama "J for J" ("Journal for John") based on the correspondence between her father and her brother, who was mentally disabled. She was married to the rock star Jim Messina.
Patsy Sullivan-Webb was a successful model who appeared as the face of Yardley Cosmetics in the Swinging '60s, starting at the age of twelve. She appeared with her father in the episode of That Girl that opened the series' third season and was a contestant on The Dating Game. She married the great songwriter Jimmy Webb, by whom she had six children. Two of her sons formed the rock group The Webb Brothers.
Barry Sullivan died of a respiratory ailment on June 6, 1994 in Sherman Oaks, California. He was 81 years old.
Pittsburgh-born John Hodiak was one of several up-and-coming male talents who managed to take advantage of the dearth of WWII-era superstars (MGM's Clark Gable, Van Johnson, Robert Taylor and James Stewart, among others) who were off serving their country. John's early death at age 41, however, robbed Hollywood of a strong player and promising character star.
Born on April 16, 1914, the eldest of four (one daughter was adopted), John was eight years old when his middle-class family moved to a thriving Polish community in a suburb of Detroit, Michigan. His father, Walter, was born in the Ukraine and his mother, Anna, was Polish. Expressing interest in music and drama at an early age, he was encouraged by his father who had appeared in amateur shows. He found roles in school plays (done in Hungarian or Polish), sang in the Ukranian church choir, played the clarinet, and even took diction lessons. Not to be outdone, his athletic skills were also put on display. At one point, he was considered by the St. Louis Cardinals for their farm league but he declined the offer in favor of pursuing an acting career.
Following high school, John found work as a golf caddy and stockroom clerk (at a Chevrolet company) before breaking into radio (WXYZ) in Detroit and (later) Chicago. His more notable roles was as the title figure in "L'il Abner" (a role created on radio) and in the serials "Ma Perkins" and "Wings of Destiny". While in Chicago he was noticed by MGM talent agent Marvin Schenck and signed. Proud of his heritage, he refused to change his name to a more marquee-friendly moniker despite mogul Louis B. Mayer's concerns. Hodiak made his debut as a walk-on in A Stranger in Town, and had a bit part in one of Ann Sothern's "Maisie" series Swing Shift Maisie before becoming her leading man in a subsequent entry (Maisie Goes to Reno) the following year.
His inability to sign up for military duty due to his high blood pressure ended up giving him a starring career. Attention started being paid after he played Lana Turner's soldier husband in Marriage Is a Private Affair. An interested Alfred Hitchcock then borrowed John for the role of Kovac, the torpedoed ship's crew member, in one of his classic war dramas Lifeboat starring the irrepressible Tallulah Bankhead at 20th Century-Fox. The studio was so impressed with John's work in this that it cast him in two other quality films: Sunday Dinner for a Soldier and A Bell for Adano, both of which showed off his quiet but rugged charm.
In the former he played the patriotic title role and co-starred with Anne Baxter. No sparks as of yet between these two, but a year or so later they reconnected at a party and started dating. They married on July 6, 1946. The second film, the exquisitely sensitive and moving war picture A Bell for Adano made him a star by Hollywood standards. Co-starring a rather miscast Gene Tierney (as a blonde Italian village girl) and William Bendix, John was more than up to the challenge of playing the role of U.S. Major Joppolo, originally created on Broadway by Fredric March. The irony of it all is that the actor never found better roles (at MGM) than the ones he filmed while lent out to Fox.
Back at MGM, John went through the usual paces. He was overlooked in the rousing Judy Garland vehicle The Harvey Girls, but seemed much more at home in the film noir Somewhere in the Night and in the WWII drama Homecoming that starred Clark Gable and Lana Turner, with John and wife Anne Baxter serving as second leads.
With MGM's male roster of talent back home now from the war, John was unceremoniously relegated to second leads that supported the top-tier actors, including Gable, Spencer Tracy, Robert Walker, James Stewart and Robert Taylor. While several of his subsequent post-war films drew desultory reviews, notably the Greer Garson "Miniver" sequel The Miniver Story, Hedy Lamarr's so-called tale of intrigue A Lady Without Passport, and the Clark Gable western Across the Wide Missouri, John did manage to co-star in two of MGM's more stirring war pictures -- Command Decision and Battleground. Occasionally deemed "glum" and "wooden" by his harsher critics, John's MGM contract expired in 1951 and he began to freelance. Most of the work that followed were starring roles in low-budget entries. Battle Zone had John and Stephen McNally as two Korean war photographers distracted by the lovely Linda Christian, and Conquest of Cochise featured a miscast John as the famed Indian warrior.
John reaped better rewards on the stage during this time. Receiving excellent reviews following his 1952 Broadway debut as the sheriff in "The Chase" (he received the Donaldson Award), the actor returned to Broadway as Lieutenant Maryk in "The Caine Mutiny Court Martial (1954) co-starring Henry Fonda. He was extremely disappointed when former fellow MGM player Van Johnson was cast as the lieutenant in the acclaimed film version starring Humphrey Bogart as Captain Queeg.
The father of daughter Katrina Baxter Hodiak, who was born in 1951, John and Anne's varied backgrounds (he was middle class and she more high society -- her grandfather being the renowned Frank Lloyd Wright) and their busy film careers created significant problems. They divorced on January 27, 1953. John later built a home for his parents and younger brother in Tarzana, California and eventually lived there with them. His later years grew difficult and were plagued by self-doubt, a diminishing career and an equally diminishing social life.
John's key Broadway success in "Mutiny" led to a fine comeback role on screen as a prosecuting attorney in Trial, finding "guest artist" work on dramatic TV as well. What might have led to a strong resurgence, however, was sadly cut short. On the morning of October 19, 1955, 41-year-old John suffered a coronary thrombosis and died instantly while shaving in the bathroom of his home. He was on his way to the 20th Century-Fox lot to complete final work on his last film, On the Threshold of Space, when he was stricken.
The movie was released posthumously with John's role left intact. While no previous record of a heart ailment, per se, was ever uncovered, the hypertension that kept him out of the service, at a relatively young age, no doubt contributed to his death. It was an extreme shock to lose someone so relatively young, and even sadder for those he loved and left behind, including his 4-year-old daughter. Katrina Hodiak later became a composer, an actress and a theater director). John was interred at the Calvary Cemetery in Los Angeles.
John Rubinstein is an actor, director, composer, singer, and teacher. He was born in Los Angeles, California in 1946, the same year his father, the renowned Polish-born concert pianist Artur Rubinstein, became an American citizen. He is the youngest of four children. His sister, Eva, danced and acted on Broadway, creating the role of "Margo" in the original production of "The Diary of Anne Frank"; she later became an internationally known photographer. His brother, Paul, recently retired from his career as a stockbroker in New York; his sister, Alina, is a psychiatrist in Manhattan. John attended St. Bernard's School and Collegiate School in New York City, and then returned to Los Angeles in 1964 to study theater at UCLA. During his college years, he began his professional career as an actor, appearing in 1965 with Howard Keel in Lerner and Loewe's "Camelot" in San Carlos and Anaheim; playing a role in the Civil War film, Journey to Shiloh; and starting his long list of television appearances in shows, such as The Virginian, Dragnet 1967 and Room 222. It was also at UCLA that he began composing and orchestrating music: incidental music for theatrical plays, and a musical, "The Short and Turbulent Reign of Roger Ginzburg", with book and lyrics by David Colloff, that won the 1967 BMI Varsity Musical Award as Best Musical.
Rubinstein made his Broadway acting debut in 1972, and received a Theater World Award, for creating the title role in the musical "Pippin", directed by Bob Fosse. In 1980, he won the Tony, Drama Desk, Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle, and Drama-Logue Awards for his portrayal of "James Leeds" in Mark Medoff's "Children Of A Lesser God", directed by Gordon Davidson. Other Broadway appearances were in Neil Simon's "Fools", and David Rabe's "Hurlyburly", both directed by Mike Nichols; Herman Wouk's "The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial", which earned him another Drama Desk nomination; David Henry Hwang's "M. Butterfly"; "Getting Away With Murder", by Stephen Sondheim and George Furth, directed by Jack O'Brien, and the musical "Ragtime", directed by Frank Galati. In 2014, he joined the Broadway cast of the hit revival of "Pippin," directed by Diane Paulus, this time playing Pippin's father, Charlemagne. He repeated this role on the national tour throughout the United States, Japan, and Europe in 2014-2016. In 1987, he made his off-Broadway debut at the Roundabout Theater as "Guildenstern" in Tom Stoppard's "Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead", with Stephen Lang and John Wood, and subsequently performed in "Urban Blight" and "Cabaret Verboten". In 2005, he received the Lucille Lortel Award for Best Lead Actor in a Play, as well as nominations for both the Outer Critics' and Drama League Awards, for his portrayal of "George Simon" in Elmer Rice's "Counselor-at-Law", directed by Dan Wackerman, at the Pecadillo Theatre.
His appearances in regional theaters include the musicals "Camelot" (at various times as "Tom of Warwick", "Mordred" and "King Arthur") and "South Pacific"; the role of "Billy" in David Rabe's "Streamers", "Ariel" in "The Tempest", "Marchbanks" in Shaw's "Candida", both Sergius and Bluntschli (alternating nights with Richard Thomas) in Shaw's "Arms And The Man", several roles in Arnold Weinstein's "Metamorphoses", directed by Paul Sills at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles, "Sight Unseen" at L.A.'s Odyssey Theatre, "The Torch-Bearers" and "Our Town" at the Williamstown Theater Festival, Arthur Miller's "Broken Glass" at Monterey Peninsula College, and Warren Smith in "On A Clear Day You Can See Forever" (in a 160-city National Tour). In 1985 He starred in "Merrily We Roll Along" at the La Jolla Playhouse, in a version newly re-written by Stephen Sondheim and George Furth, directed by James Lapine. He was the original Andrew Ladd III in A.R. Gurney's "Love Letters" at the Long Wharf Theater in New Haven, opened the play in New York off-Broadway, and later performed it on Broadway, in San Francisco, Boston, Los Angeles and Washington D.C. He created the role of Molina in "Kiss Of The Spider Woman", the musical by Terrence McNally, John Kander, and Fred Ebb, directed by Harold Prince, and the role of Kenneth Hoyle in Jon Robin Baitz's "Three Hotels". In 1997, he played Tateh in the American premiere run of the musical "Ragtime", by Terrence McNally, Stephen Flaherty, and Lynn Ahrens, directed by Frank Galati, at the Shubert Theater in Los Angeles, receiving both an L. A. Drama Critics Circle nomination and a Drama-Logue Award as Best Actor in a Musical, and continued in the show both in Vancouver and on Broadway. He appeared opposite Donald Sutherland in Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt's "Enigmatic Variations" at the Royal Alexandra Theatre in Toronto, and at the Savoy Theatre in London's West End; played the Wizard of Oz in the hit musical "Wicked", by Winnie Holzman and Stephen Schwartz, directed by Joe Mantello, at the Pantages Theatre in Los Angeles for 18 months; and starred with John Schuck and Ken Page in the world premiere of a musical version of "Grumpy Old Men" in Winnipeg at the Manitoba Theatre Centre.
His 24 feature films include Atlas Shrugged Part II; Hello, I Must Be Going, which opened the 2012 Sundance Festival; 21 Grams; Red Dragon; Mercy; Another Stakeout; Someone To Watch Over Me; Daniel; The Boys From Brazil; Rome and Jewel; Choose Connor; Sublime; Jekyll; Kid Cop; Getting Straight; Zachariah; The Trouble with Girls; Journey To Shiloh; and The Car. He received an Emmy Award nomination for his portrayal of Jeff Maitland III in the ABC series "Family", a role he played for five years; and he starred for two years with Jack Warden in the CBS series "Crazy Like A Fox". He has acted in over 200 television films and series episodes, including Arthur Miller's "The American Clock" (CableAce Award Nomination), "Feud!", "When We Rise", "Mrs. Harris", "Perfect Murder, Perfect Town", "Norma And Marilyn", "The Sleepwalker", "Working Miracles", "In My Daughter's Name", "Perry Mason", "Voices Within: The Lives Of Truddi Chase", "The Two Mrs. Grenvilles", "Skokie", "Movieola", "Roots: The Next Generations", and "A Howling In The Woods". He has played recurring parts on "This Is Us", "The Fosters", "Perception", "The Mentalist", "Desperate Housewives", "Parenthood", "No Ordinary Family", "Greek", "The Wizards of Waverly Place", "Dirty Sexy Money", "Day Break", "Angel", "The Guardian", "The Practice", "Star Trek: Enterprise", "Girlfriends", "Robocop: the Series", "The Young and the Restless", and "Barbershop."
Mr. Rubinstein has composed, orchestrated, and conducted the musical scores for five feature films, including Jeremiah Johnson (directed by Sidney Pollack) and The Candidate, (directed by Michael Ritchie), both starring Robert Redford; Paddy (with Milo O'Shea); The Killer Inside Me (with Stacy Keach); and Kid Blue (with Dennis Hopper); and for over 50 television films, among them the Peabody Award-winning "Amber Waves", "The Dollmaker" (starring Jane Fonda), "A Walton Wedding", "The Ordeal Of Patty Hearst", "Choices Of The Heart", and "Emily, Emily", as well as the weekly themes for "Family" and "China Beach".
He spent six years as host for the radio program "Carnegie Hall Tonight", broadcast on l80 stations in the United States and Canada, and two years as the keyboard player for the jazz-rock group Funzone. He has recorded over 100 audio books, including 25 of the best-selling Alex Delaware novels by Jonathan Kellerman, the Pulitzer Prize-winning "Independence Day" by Richard Ford, Tom Clancy's "Debt Of Honor" and "Op Center", and E. L. Doctorow's "City of God", "World's Fair", and "All The Time In The World".
In 1987, Rubinstein made his directorial debut at the Williamstown Theater Festival, staging Aphra Behn's "The Rover", with Christopher Reeve and Kate Burton; the following season he directed the first American-cast production of Christopher Hampton's "Les Liaisons Dangereuses", with Dwight Schultz and Dianne Wiest. Off-Broadway, he directed the New York premieres of "Phantasie", by Sybille Pearson, and "Nightingale", by Elizabeth Diggs; and the world premiere of A. R. Gurney's "The Old Boy", with Stephen Collins. At the Cape Playhouse in Massachusetts, he staged "Wait Until Dark", with Hayley Mills and William Atherton. For NYU, he directed productions of "The Three Sisters" and "Macbeth"; for UCLA, "Company"; and for USC, "Brigadoon", "Into The Woods", "On The Town", "City of Angels", and "The Most Happy Fella". In Los Angeles, at Interact Theatre Company, of which he has been a member since 1992, he co-directed and starred in the revival of Elmer Rice's Counsellor-At-Law, winning Drama-Logue Awards and L.A. Drama Critics Circle Awards in both categories, as well as Ovation Awards for Ensemble Acting and Sound Design; the production itself won 22 awards; he also directed and acted in Sondheim and Lapine's "Into The Woods" and "A Little Night Music", and Meredith Willson's "The Music Man", and also directed Sheridan's "The Rivals" and Frank Loesser's "Guys and Dolls". For television, he directed the CBS Schoolbreak Special "A Matter Of Conscience", which won the Emmy Award for Best Children's Special in 1990, an episode of the CBS series "Nash Bridges", the ABC AfterSchool Special miniseries "Summer Stories", and three episodes of the TV series "High Tide".
In 2011, Rubinstein provided commentary for the online web-casting of the XIVth International Tchaikovsky Competition, a classical music competition held in Moscow. He teaches courses in musical theater audition and acting for the camera, and directs the annual spring musical, at the University of Southern California.
He is married to Bonnie Burgess, and has five children: Jessica, Michael (the actor Michael Weston), Peter, Jacob, and Max.
Robert Lowery was born Robert Larkin Hanks in Kansas City, Missouri, the only living child of Roscoe Hanks, noted Kansas City attorney and oil investor; and Leah Thompson, concert pianist and organist. He attended local Kansas City schools and graduated from Paseo High School in 1931 with a record as an accomplished athlete. He played with the old Kansas City Blues baseball team and was a boxer and football player. After a field injury in which he broke his pelvis, he built himself back to strength working at a paper factory in Kansas City. With the premature death of his father at 43, he and his mother moved to Los Angeles in hopes of his landing film and theater roles, given his good looks, athletic ability and outstanding physique. He enrolled in Lila Bliss' acting school and soon came to the attention of Twentieth Century-Fox after successfully appearing in a number of stage roles in the Los Angeles area. He was signed to Fox in 1938, and was soon appearing in such first-class films as Drums Along the Mohawk. Although not known for his stage work, he appeared in several major theater productions, such as "The Caine Mutiny" and "Born Yesterday" (as "Brock") with his wife and fellow actress Jean Parker. He enjoyed a film and stage career that lasted well into the 1960s, at which time he started a second career with Jackie Coogan in a celebrity travel cruise business. One of his more notable film appearances was with Ray Danton in The Rise and Fall of Legs Diamond and he turned in a rare, but funny, performance as a political hack governor on the make for John Wayne's ex-wife in Wayne's western comedy McLintock!.
As he matured into middle age, he acquired a startling resemblance to Clark Gable. He also appeared extensively in television, including as Big Tim Champion in the 1956-57 Circus Boy, also starring Noah Beery Jr. and Micky Dolenz (pre-Monkee days); Playhouse 90; episodes of Hazel and Pistols 'n' Petticoats starring Ann Sheridan, with Lowery playing Buss Courtney in the 1966-67 season. He and wife Jean had one son, Robert, who lives in Redondo Beach, California, with his wife Barbara and twin thirteen-year-old girls. Lowery passed away from a heart attack Christmas night of 1971, and is buried at Valhalla Memorial Park in North Hollywood, California. His motto: "Whatever's fair." He took a less-than-serious view of life and his career, and was well-loved by his friends and family as a raconteur and humorist.
A veteran of stage, screen, radio and TV, character actor Nigel Stock was born in Malta in 1919, the son of Captain W.H. Stock, RE, and his wife Margaret Marion Munro. In British India from childhood, he and his sister Angela returned to the UK in his early teens for schooling. Nigel was educated at St. Paul's School and studied for the stage at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, where he earned the Leverhulme Exhibition, Northcliffe Scholarship, and the Principal's Medal. He made his debut stage appearance at the Savoy Theatre in 1931, at the age of 12, in a production of "The Traveller in the Dark". He continued to rack up a number of classical and contemporary credits at various distinguished theaters, including the Old Vic, with productions of "The Winter's Tale", "Macbeth" (playing Macduff), "Tobacco Road" and "Goodbye, Mr. Chips". Stock interrupted his thriving career by serving in the Army from 1939 to 1941 with the London Irish Rifles, and with the Assam Regiment, Indian Army between 1941 and 1945 in Burma, China and Kohima. He was honorably discharged with the rank of Major. He returned to the stage in 1946 with "And No Birds Sing" and made his first appearance on the New York stage as "Philip" in "You Never Can Tell" in 1948. A reliable player who lent distinction to every aspect of the theatrical repertoire, from William Shakespeare through Anton Chekhov to modern farce, he impressed in "She Stoops to Conquer", "The Caine Mutiny Court Martial", "Altona", "Uncle Vanya" and "Sleuth", among others. An imposing, often bearded presence, he started off in films as a teenager in Lancashire Luck, later appearing in such popular British releases as Brighton Rock, The Dam Busters, Damn the Defiant!, The Lost Continent, The Lion in Winter, Cromwell and Russian Roulette, often appearing in villainous roles. Interestingly, one of his last performances was a character part in the Steven Spielberg production of Young Sherlock Holmes. Between 1964-1968, Stock made a household name for himself playing Dr. Watson" in Sherlock Holmes. He had a devout interest in ornithology. Stock's third wife was actress Richenda Carey. They appeared together on stage in the world premiere of "Mumbo Jumbo" from May 8-May 31, 1986. Less than a month later, Stock died on June 23rd of a heart attack. He was survived by four children.
Primarily known as a "B" movie bad guy of hundreds of films, husky actor Steve Brodie was born John Daugherty Stephens on November 25, 1919, in El Dorado, Kansas. Raised in Wichita, he dropped out of school and raced cars, boxed and worked on oil rigs to get by. He initially entertained a criminal law career but that interest quickly wore off after having to toil as a property boy.
A passion for acting then was instigated and Brodie found early work in summer stock. Changing his stage name to "Steve Brodie", a move to New York did not pay off but a subsequent move to Los Angeles did. He broke into films after being spotted by an MGM talent scout in a Hollywood theatre production entitled "Money Girls". Loaned out for his first film, Universal's Ladies Courageous, Brodie appeared in a few tough-guy bit parts in such MGM films as Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo, The Clock and Anchors Aweigh before he was dropped. It wasn't long before he was signed by RKO and it was with studio that his reputation as a heavy in westerns grew, with such roles as notorious outlaws Bob Dalton in Badman's Territory and Cole Younger in Return of the Bad Men. In between those two pictures were strong roles in three film noir classics: Desperate (leading good guy), Crossfire and Out of the Past (both supporting baddies).
A hard-living, hard-drinking actor, Brodie married "B" actress Lois Andrews in 1946 but the couple divorced four years later, not long after appearing together in the western programmer Rustlers. He married Barbara Savitt--the widow of bandleader Jan Savitt--in September of 1950 and the union produced son Kevin Brodie two years later (Kevin later became a producer/director). Steve's second marriage lasted until 1966.
Interest in Brodie eventually waned at the studio and his contract was not renewed. Freelancing elsewhere, he appeared as a lead in Rose of the Yukon and another classic film noir, Armored Car Robbery (on the right side of the law for a change), and also earned good parts in Home of the Brave, The Steel Helmet and Lady in the Iron Mask (as the Musketeer Athos). Most of his post-RKO film work, however, would be in low-budgeters: I Cheated the Law, The Great Plane Robbery, Army Bound, The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms, Donovan's Brain and Under Fire. He also appeared as the hero's nemesis in several Tim Holt / Richard Martin westerns, including The Arizona Ranger, Guns of Hate and Brothers in the Saddle. In the late 1950s he had leads in the "C"-level films Spy in the Sky!, Arson for Hire and Here Come the Jets.
A familiar presence on 1950s and 1960s TV, he worked on such crime series as Public Defender, Hawaiian Eye, Surfside 6, Perry Mason, Burke's Law and such western series as The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp (recurring part), The Lone Ranger, Adventures of Wild Bill Hickok, Laramie, Sugarfoot, Maverick, Rawhide, Gunsmoke and comedies including The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet, _"The Beverly Hillbillies" (1962)_ (qav). He also appeared in a touring production of "The Caine Mutiny Court Martial" starring Paul Douglas and Wendell Corey. The company ended abruptly when the liberal-minded Douglas, in a North Carolina interview, strongly criticized the conservative state and the resulting backlash forced the production's closure.
Brodie's later years were marred by drinking arrests. In the 1970s he made sporadic appearances, including a lead in the campy low-budget horror film The Giant Spider Invasion opposite Barbara Hale and a part in Delta Pi [aka "Mugsy's Girls"], which was written, produced and directed by son Kevin and was also his last film. He also provided voice work in commercials and showed up at nostalgia conventions, including The Knoxville Western Film Fair in 1991, less than a year before his death.
In 1973 Brodie married a third time, to Virginia Hefner, and they had a son Sean. Suffering from esophageal cancer and heart problems, Brodie died at age 72 on January 9, 1992, at a West Hills, California, hospital.
Stephen Joyce is an American actor of theater, television and film. He was born March 7, 1931 in New York City, to Stephen James Joyce and Ruth Rita Reilly. The family moved to Brooklyn, and he attended parochial schools, Xavier High, a Jesuit Military school and Fordham University where he majored in theater. At the beginning of the Korean War he joined the Air Force and spent two years in the Far East. He is married to Billie Jean Jones, they have three children.
A few weeks after his discharge he was cast as the juvenile lead In a George Montgomery movie Street of Sinners (1956). Later movie roles would include The Greatest Story Ever Told (1965) Irish Whiskey Rebellion (1972) The Dark Secret of Harvest Home (1978) One Police Plaza (1980) A Stranger is Watching (1982) The Red Spider (1988) Stranger on my Land (1988), Billy Bathgate (1991), and Invasion (1992.
Rarely has an actor worked as consistently as Mr. Joyce at no less than three of the Shakespeare Festivals and seven of the regional theaters in the United States. His first professional job was with the Irish Players. He won the Theater World Award for his portrayal of the title role in Stephen D. His first major role in New York City was as Romeo in the initial production of Shakespeare in the Park. In his review in the Herald Tribune Walter Kerr wrote, "in short this Romeo must be fairly close to what Shakespeare had in mind." He also appeared at the American Shakespeare Festival as well as the San Diego Festival where he played such roles as Hotspur, Leones in Winter's Tale, with his son Michael playing the prince. He particularly enjoyed the part of Puck in Midsummers Night Dream. He played Edgar in Morris Carnovsky's King Lear at the Pilgrimage Theater in Hollywood directed by John Houseman. With the Seattle Repertory Theater he played Hamlet and Biff in Death of a Salesman. At Yale he interpreted Caliban in The Tempest, Bill Cracker in Happy End and Sigismund in Life is a Dream.
Below the Mason Dixon line he appeared in OIney's Joe Egg and the World Premiere production of Hugh Leonard's Da, a role he repeated in Chicago where he was nominated for the Joseph Jefferson award. He was nominated for the Drama Desk award for his role as Captain Blakely in The Caine Mutiny Court Martial at the Circle in the Square in New York City. He created the role of the tormented priest Father Rivard in The Runner Stumbles in Stamford and repeated that role at the Little Theater on Broadway. For that portrayal, Clive Barnes, Theater critic for the New York Times, wrote that he was the consummate actor and that he was brought to tears by his performance. He also won raves for his portrayal of the violent Pvt. Brown in Maneuvers.
He has had recurring roles in daytime's Another World, Search for Tomorrow, All My Children, Texas, For Richer or Poorer, Where the Hearts Is as well as numerous voice-overs.
In his career he has appeared in over two hundred television shows, including starring roles on Omnibus, Play of the Week, and Studio One.
Paul Birch, born Paul Smith in Atmore, Alabama, died on Saturday, May 24, 1969, in St. George, Grenada. Stocky, barrel-chested, and gifted with a resonant baritone speaking voice, Birch was a veteran of 39 movies, 50 stage dramas and an untold number of television shows including the Hallmark Hall of Fame. He entered motion pictures via small roles in several westerns in the late 40s and early 50s. In the middle 1950s he became part of the repertory company of Roger Corman, where he achieved star billing, but which he left following a physical confrontation with Corman during the filming of one of his (Birch's) best-remembered films, Not of This Earth, which had to be completed with the use of a double. In the late 1950s he starred, along with William Campbell, in the syndicated series Cannonball, a half-hour drama/adventure show about over-the-road truckers. He was the original "Marlboro Man" in TV commercials and played both Union Gen. U.S. Grant and Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee in several historical playlets. He started out as the first of the original members of the Pasadena Playhouse and his stage work included "The Caine Mutiny". He was often called upon to play Grant due to the striking resemblance (when bearded) he bore to the former General and President. He enjoyed playing the roles of Lee and Grant and once remarked, "There were times when I was switching those two roles so fast I could have surrendered to myself."
The director Robert Siodmak (which he insisted, be pronounced 'See-odd-mack') was a masterful film maker who successfully blended the techniques of German Expressionism with contemporary styles of American film, particularly film noir, in the process creating a handful of moody, sometimes chilling, and always memorable motion pictures. Though born in Memphis, Tennessee, of Jewish parents who visited on business, Siodmak spent his youth in Germany from the age of one. He received his tertiary education from the University of Marburg and briefly tried his hand at acting with local stock companies. When this didn't work out, he joined his father in the bank business, but with rampant inflation and the Great Depression about to hit, this too was a short-lived venture. After losing much of his own money on the stock market, Siodmak managed to get a job writing titles for imported American films and, by 1927, progressed to film cutter.
In 1929, Siodmak managed to coax producer Seymour Nebenzal to finance an experimental film based on a story written by Robert's brother Curt, People on Sunday. The film, essentially a series of light-hearted vignettes using non-professional actors, was co-directed by Siodmak in conjunction with Edgar G. Ulmer, and co-written by Billy Wilder. The resulting popularity of this little film led to a contract with Erich Pommer at UFA. Siodmak's first noted effort as director was the comedy/drama Der Mann, der seinen Mörder sucht, again with brother Curt and Billy Wilder writing the screenplay. The story concerned a man tired of living, but too cowardly to commit suicide. He takes out a contract on himself but, after the contract has been sold to an unknown, changes his mind, desperately trying to figure out the identity of his would-be assassin. The film was ahead of its time (and the plot has been copied many times since) but failed at the box office. Siodmak's second effort, Voruntersuchung ('Inquest'), was a murder mystery in which the son of the magistrate prosecuting the case was the chief suspect. This picture truly established Siodmak on the scene as a leading exponent of expressionism, using lighting and photography to convey emotion, such as fear and repulsion. 'Voruntersuchung' is very much a victory of style over content, laden with atmosphere and imbued with realistic detail, both sight and sound. There are unusual camera angles and close-ups, flashing lights and incidental sounds (for example, a ruler scraped along heating pipes to intimidate an interrogated suspect) not used as prominently on screen before.
When Hitler came to power in Germany, Siodmak joined Billy Wilder in Paris and stayed there until 1940. He directed varied output, from the depression-era musical La crise est finie with Danielle Darrieux and the Jacques Offenbach operetta La vie parisienne, to the taut suspenser Personal Column, which dealt with the trapping of a Ripper-style serial killer. In 1940, Siodmak was on the very last ship leaving France for America on the eve of Germany's occupation of Paris.
After a brief stay at Paramount from 1941 to 42, Siodmak found his niche at Universal (1943-48), a studio renowned for combining expressionist techniques with Hollywood neo-realism, particularly through their horror and thriller output. Siodmak's experience with editing and having filmed in France on relatively low budgets, enabled him to create at Universal a number of quality films which looked good without being expensive to produce. After directing the atmospheric, though routinely-plotted, Son of Dracula 1943, Siodmak had a noteworthy hit with the murder mystery Phantom Lady. This film maintained suspense throughout, by its fast pace, the use of moody lighting and clever little touches, such as a strange hat which leads to the discovery of the key witness in the story. Siodmak was also able to elicit strong performances from his cast, in particular, Franchot Tone as the murderer. Another excellent Siodmak film that year was the period drama The Suspect, set in 19th century gas-lit London, starring Charles Laughton as a man driven to murdering his shrewish wife.
Generally recognised as Siodmak's masterpiece, was the stylish thriller The Spiral Staircase, a joint venture between RKO and David O. Selznick's Vanguard Films. The story of a demented perfectionist, who murders deformed girls, is set in a gothic New England mansion in 1906, against the backdrop of a raging thunderstorm. The film is rich in period detail and imagery. Because the chief protagonist and next on the killer's hit list (Dorothy McGuire) is mute, Siodmak used reflections and disconcerting mirror images to convey terror, much in the same way Murnau did in his silent horror classic Nosferatu. George Brent, as the villain, gave arguably the best performance of his career.
Now firmly ensconced as a director of A-grade films, Siodmak proceeded to direct The Killers, a classy film noir based on a 1927 story by Ernest Hemingway. Today regarded as one of the best of the genre, 'The Killers' is, for the most part shrouded in shadows, which, combining with its narrative composed of almost entirely of flashbacks and scenes shots from above, engenders a feeling of claustrophobia and impending doom. The story unfolds like the pieces of a jigsaw puzzle falling into place, pre-deterministic in its post-war world view. Siodmak continued in the same vein with The Dark Mirror, in which police try to determine which of two identical twins (played by Olivia de Havilland) has committed murder; Cry of the City, about a policeman tracking down a childhood friend, turned killer; Criss Cross, a violent, suspenseful crime melodrama about an armoured car guard, who is compromised by gangsters; and the stylish film noir, The File on Thelma Jordon, with Barbara Stanwyck at her best as a chillingly ruthless, manipulating femme fatale in the vein of her Phyllis Dietrichson or Martha Ivers. By the end of the 1940's, Robert Siodmak had established a reputation as a master of suspense and the macabre, second only to Hitchcock.
In stark contrast to his usual output, Siodmak directed Burt Lancaster in the muscular The Crimson Pirate, a colourful, cheerful swashbuckler, with spectacular action scenes, unmatched in the genre before 'Pirates of the Caribbean', half a century later. This was Siodmak's swan song in Hollywood.
Coming full-circle, he returned to Germany, where he directed several interesting dramas, notably Die Ratten with Maria Schell as a pregnant, homeless 20-year old, in the nightmarish world of burnt-out post-war Berlin; and The Devil Strikes at Night ('The Devil strikes at Night'), the story of a serial killer in Hamburg in the late 1930's. Reminiscent of Fritz Lang's M, this intense film stood out for the realistic treatment of its subject. It won ten awards, including the Deutscher Filmpreis in Berlin and made a star of Mario Adorf, who Siodmak cast on the strength of having seen him on the Munich stage in 'The Caine Mutiny'. Siodmak's last films of note were international co-productions: Custer of the West, which was shot in Spain with Robert Shaw in the title role; and The Last Roman, with Laurence Harvey and Orson Welles. Neither film was a success. Robert Siodmak retired from film making in 1970. He died three years later of a heart attack in a hospital in Locarno, Switzerland.
|John Archer Lundgren
Screen work comprises national distribution and television network movies; a variety of indie features and shorts,including a number of festival favorites; TV episodes(domestic and foreign); and industrials, as well as film school productions. Film/TV production locations have included Ethiopia, New York, Los Angeles, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and Tennessee.
Screen productions have ranged from gripping drama to farcical comedy and sentimental tear-jerkers. A wide variety of character roles has included the loony, pathetic and mean; the wicked, heroic and devious; the victimized, authoritative and outrageous; the sage, destitute and debonair. As one casting director put it: "Jack's acting persona is less vanilla, than chocolate with sprinkles."
Several decades of continuous foreign residence in Latin America, France and divers countries throughout Africa facilitated a raft of stage performances in English and Spanish language productions in various countries, including works by Anderson, Anouilh, Axelrod, Chekhov, Gilbert & Sullivan, Lerner & Loewe, Roussin, Shaffer, Wilde, Wilder and Wouk; as well as voice-over recordings for the French Foreign Legion in Djibouti.
Sporadic visits to the USA included study in the Performing Arts at the Boston University Theater Institute, as well as a number of stage performances in Florida and Georgia, including works by Albee, Friel, Lerner & Loewe, and Miller. For more than ten years, in various countries and states, in a wide variety of venues, Jack staged his one-man show based on the works of Edgar Allan Poe; his current stand-up repertoire resurrects an old-timey vaudeville routine featuring a variety of short silly patter songs.
In recent years, Jack has performed regularly in theaters throughout North/Central Florida, interpreting, among others: works by Chekhov, Shakespeare, Simon, Woldin, Sondheim, Letts and Gelbart; musical shows for school children; and non-singing performances with the Orlando Opera Company.
Jack played Rabbi Furtado in the South-Eastern USA premiere of "The King of Schnorrers" by Judd Woldin, winner of a Tony Award in 1974 for his score for the musical "Raisin". Jack has interpreted the Magistrate in two separate productions of Neil Simon's "Fools", as well as rocking the equally bizarre Congressman Salt in Michel Parker's "The Sensuous Senator",which was the comedy hit of Jacksonville, Florida's 2003-2004 theater season; then came the scandalous Marcus Lycus in "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum". These outrageous characters were followed by Bud Todd, the lascivious lonely-wife chaser in Tracy Letts' "Man From Nebraska"; as well as the outrageously rickety miser, Jethro Crouch, in "Sly Fox" by Larry Gelbart, the creator of "M*A*S*H".
Other favorite stage roles from yesteryear have included Captain Queeg in "The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial", Milo Tindle in "Sleuth", Lady Bracknell in "The Importance of Being Earnest", the psychopathic Jerry in Albee's "Zoo Story", and Father Jack in "Dancing at Lughnasa".
Education includes undergraduate study in Missouri, Colorado and Mexico; graduate study at the Ecuadorian Institute of International Law in Quito; and a Doctorate in Letters from the University of Lille in France, as well as the previously mentioned study in the Performing Arts at the Boston University Theater Institute.
Robert Gist was a tough kid who grew up around the Chicago stockyards during the Depression. Reform school-bound after injuring another boy in a fistfight, Gist instead ended up in Chicago's Hull House, a settlement house where he first became interested in acting. Work in Chicago radio was followed by stage acting roles in Chicago and on Broadway (in the long-running "Harvey" with Josephine Hull). While acting in "Harvey", he made his film debut in New York-shot scenes for 20th Century-Fox's Christmas classic Miracle on 34th Street. Gist was also seen on Broadway in director Charles Laughton's "The Caine Mutiny Court Martial" (1954) with Henry Fonda and John Hodiak. While shooting Operation Petticoat in Key West, Florida, Gist told director Blake Edwards that he was interested in directing; Edwards later hired him to helm episodes of the TV series Peter Gunn. Gist has also directed for TV's Naked City, The Twilight Zone, Route 66 and many others.
Michael Rothhaar has been a professional actor since 1975 and a professional theatre director since 1985. He won the 1997 Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award and the 1997 Drama Logue Award for Outstanding Lead Performance in Ardèle, as well as the 1997 Drama Logue Award in Direction for Mrs. Warren's Profession. Both productions were for Pacific Resident Theatre. As an actor, he appeared on Broadway in The Front Page and The Corn Is Green, in such feature films as The Nutty Professor and Space Jam, Off-Broadway in Frankenstein and Brand, in the San Francisco company of The Foreigner, the Los Angeles company of Shear Madness, in the Geffen's production of Uncle Vanya, and the American premiere of Dog Days, (written and directed by Simon Gray)...as well as working at The Mark Taper Forum...covering in Expecting Isabel. He has worked on various television series such as Family Law, (recurring as Judge Prentiss), Ally Mc Beal, Arliss, NYPD Blue, The X-Files, Murder One, Star Trek-The Next Generation, Murphy Brown, Buffy, The Vampire Slayer, L.A. Law, Civil Wars, Picket Fences, Step By Step, Hudson Street, Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman, Married ...With Children, Snoops and Love And War. His credits also include numerous appearances in regional theatre, notably: Sleuth and Charley's Aunt at the Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial,The Tempest and The Andersonville Trial at Michigan's Meadow Brook Theatre, Terra Nova at the Washington Stage Guild in Washington, D.C., Candida and Bedroom Farce at Maryland's Olney Theatre, and the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award-winning production of The Visit at the Pacific Resident Theatre. In the course of his acting career, Michael has worked with such notable and talented individuals as Tony Award-winning directors Jerry Zaks and Vivian Matalon, acclaimed director Michael Langham, the distinguished English playwright Simon Gray, as well as such accomplished performers as John Lithgow, Richard Thomas, Imogene Coca, Wallace Shawn, René Auberjonois, Dennis Franz, Kathleen Quinlan, Eddie Murphy, Robert Foxworth, Dixie Carter, Peter Donat, Ray Walston, Peter Gallagher, Brent Spiner, Cecily Tyson, Orson Bean, Alley Mills, Tony Danza, Mariel Hemingway, Alan King, John Astin, Louie Anderson and Michael Jordan,. Michael served as the Artistic Director of Pennsylvania's Allenberry Playhouse from 1987 to 1992. For Allenberry, he has directed 40 productions, notably: Lettice And Lovage, Cat On A Hot Tin Roof, Agnes Of God, The Foreigner, Blithe Spirit, Driving Miss Daisy, The Miracle Worker, Steel Magnolias, Broadway Bound, The Diary Of Anne Frank, Lend Me A Tenor, Cabaret, Guys And Dolls and My Fair Lady. He has directed Otherwise Engaged, Candida, Mrs. Warren's Profession, Waiting For Godot, The Private Ear And Macbeth ....According To The Fifth Grade for Pacific Resident Theatre. In Washington, D.C., he directed Mrs. Warren's Profession and The Millionairess at the Washington Stage Guild. In 1994, he directed Sleuth, which toured southern California. Michael is the father of Will Rothhaar, an accomplished actor in his own right, and the step-father of Charles F. Linehan, recently engaged to be an Assistant D.A. in Manhattan.
Alfred "Fred" Cerullo made his feature film debut in the motion picture 1969 written and directed by Oscar winning screenwriter Ernest (On Golden Pond) Thompson, starring Robert Downey, Jr. and Kiefer Sutherland, and may also be recognized from his numerous appearances on the daytime dramas All My Children, Guiding Light and the former NBC hit Another World. Soap opera fans may also recognize Fred from his nearly 23 years of appearances on One Life To Live, culminating in a long stint as the "Security Guard" to fictional Llanview Mayor Dorian Lord. No stranger to the media in real life, Fred has been cast several times as a member of the press, first as the "CNN Reporter" in the NBC Television Miniseries, Robin Cook's Invasion; later as the "Anchorman" in the Hallmark Miniseries, Gone, But Not Forgotten which aired on the Lifetime Channel; as Newscaster "Fred Robinson" in the Miniseries,"Final Approach" starring Dean Cain, and in Citizen Jane starring Ally Sheedy. Fred has also been featured as "Roger" opposite Liza Minelli and Shirley MacLaine in the CBS Television Movie, The West Side Waltz.
Fred starred as "Ken Gorman" in Neil Simon's Rumors produced by The Neverland Theatre Company, for which he served as Chairman of the Board of Trustees. He has also starred in Staten Island Shakespearean Theatre (SIST) productions of Wendy Wasserstein's An American Daughter as "Timber Tucker" and Neil Simon's Laughter on the 23rd Floor as "Kenny Franks." He portrayed the bigoted "Juror # 10 in 12 Angry Men, "Tami Giacopetti" in "The Detective Story" and "Lt. Keefer" in The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial all at Sea View Playwright's Theatre. He has appeared as "Bill Warren" in Neil Simon's California Suite at the Center for the Performing Arts at City University of New York/CSI, and also played "The Mayor" in a celebrity reading of Sam's Song starring Eartha Kitt for the Manhattan based Theatre Arts Productions of New York, Inc. Fred also made his directorial debut with a production of Maxwell Anderson's The Bad Seed at SIST getting to work with his Academy Award and Golden Globe nominated aunt, the original Bad Seed herself, Patty McCormack.
In addition to his work in the entertainment industry, Fred Cerullo has spent many years serving in both the public and private sectors as well as serving as a board member of many non-profit organizations. While he has served since 1999 as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Grand Central Partnership, one of the world's largest Business Improvement Districts, Fred began a his career outside of entertainment in local New York City government as Counsel to the Minority Leader of the New York City Council. He became one of the youngest ever New York City Council Members, winning his first of four consecutive elections to the New York City Council representing the South Shore and portions of the Mid-Island communities of Staten Island, while also holding the position of City Council Minority Leader.
Cerullo became one of the youngest ever New York City Commissioners when he was tapped to run the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs and later became the City's Commissioner of Finance, running both agencies simultaneously for six months.
He served on the Mayoral Transition teams of Rudolph W. Giuliani and Michael R. Bloomberg as well as serving on the Mayor's Committee on Appointments. Since 2004 he has also served as a Commissioner of the New York City Planning Commission a position he took after serving for more than four years as a Member of the New York City Campaign Finance Board having the distinction of being the first Board Member to have participated in the city's landmark campaign finance program.
Presently, Fred serves on the Boards of the St. George Theatre Restoration, Inc., Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanical Garden, the Staten Island Foundation, the American Museum of Natural History Planetarium Authority, and St. John's University School of Law Alumni Association and is an active member of numerous organizations citywide. He also spent several years as a co-chair of the Staten Island Film Festival.
Cerullo, who resides in Staten Island, New York was born in Brooklyn and is a graduate of the New York City public school system. He received bachelors' degrees in English and American Studies from St. John's University, and his law degree from St. John's University School of Law.
While a member of SAG/AFTRA, he is also a member of the bar in New York, New Jersey, California, and Washington D.C.
Born in Orange, New Jersey, Conway was the son of vaudevillians -- his father was an acrobat and juggler, his mother, a singer and pianist. Conway studied at the Neighborhood Playhouse School in New York. In 1937, he joined the Group Theater as an assistant stage manager and had a walk-on part as a boxing arena employee in Harold Clurman's original 1937 staging of Clifford Odets' "Golden Boy." Within a year, Conway was playing a lead, as a reform school youth in "Dance Night," staged by Lee Strasberg. After serving in the Army during World War II, Conway headed for Hollywood, where he played minor parts in William Wyler's The Best Years of Our Lives and Elia Kazan's interracial drama Pinky, and had small roles in other films. Conway began directing in 1947 at the Actors Lab in Hollywood, and he directed the first interracial production of "Golden Boy" for the Negro Art Theater in Los Angeles. But in 1950, caught up in the Hollywood blacklist era and finding film job offers drying up, Conway returned to New York. After working as an understudy in Arthur Miller's "Death of a Salesman," during which he got to play Biff Loman "for one glorious week," Conway went on to direct "Hedda Gabler" and "La Ronde" at the Actors Lab. He subsequently directed an off-Broadway revival of "Deep Are the Roots" and made appearances with Joseph Papp's New York Shakespeare Festival. In addition to road company productions of "The Caine Mutiny Court Martial" and "On a Clear Day", he had small roles in the movies The Three Musketeers, Little Big Man, and The Arrangement and on TV's St. Elsewhere. Conway also worked in local theater productions. With Los Angeles' Group Repertory, he had roles in Miller's "A Memory of Two Mondays" and in Eugene O'Neill's "Ah, Wilderness!" Conway was preceded in death by his wife of 21 years, Aletta, and his brother. He is survived by a son, Robin of Mission Hills, and two grandchildren.
Jonathan trained at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, Los Angeles, where he learned not only how to identify with the soul of a tree, but to be a cup of hot coffee as well. Then he went to the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School and learned how to act. Fellow students included Daniel Day-Lewis, Miranda Richardson, Greta Scacchi, Samantha (Miss Moneypenny) Bond, and several other luminaries who wouldn't remember him either.
Beginning his professional career in Canada by playing the lead in Equus, Jonathan received an Equity card, his first stage kiss, and a visit from the police who were vetting the nude scene. He claimed asylum as a cultural refugee in Britain shortly thereafter. West End appearances include seven months with Charlton Heston and Ben Cross in The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial, and The Jungle Book with Fenella Fielding and the late Jeremy Sinden. Rep appearances include Tybalt in Romeo and Juliet (Hornchurch), Nobbs the Boxer in Curse of the Baskervilles (Plymouth Theatre Royal), and a National Trust Tour of Loves Labour's Lost, in which he played the Lord Dumaine.
A stint in Canada saw him flouncing about as dress designer Bobbi Franklyn in Ray Cooney's Run For Your Wife, the homicidal Earl of Douglas in Henry IV (Manitoba Theatre Centre), and the title role in The Dresser. Back in London, a particular favorite was playing Sir Robert Walpole in The Art of Success at the Arcola.
In 1995, to celebrate the Royal Shakespeare Company's constancy in ignoring his tenth annual request to audition, Jonathan willed them his skull to guarantee himself the perpetual, albeit posthumous role of Yorick in Hamlet. The subsequent international media interest ensured that the RSC casting department now ignores him pointedly rather than passively. Jonathan's DeWalt Powerdrill advert, in which he plays a gay skinhead, crops up occasionally on Chris Tarrant's The Greatest Commercials Never Shown. He has led the Boston Tea Party for a BBC documentary, played a rogue Soviet General for a Eurofighter promo, an incinerated Luftwaffe pilot in Miramax's 'Below', an intergalactic drug dealer in TekWars, (directed by William 'Captain Kirk' Shatner), appeared on BBC Radio 4, and is also the Voice of the "Jamie Oliver Flavour Shaker"!!
Having very recently arrived in America with his shiny new Green Card, Jonathan's next ambition is to join the CIA, having perfected the art of working for years in the public eye whilst still managing to maintain an almost terminal anonymity.
Born 1932 in Central California, Starns served in the U.S. Navy from March 1950 to October 1953. Most of that service was aboard the U.S.S. Doyle, a Minesweeper (the Navy lost 4 ships during the Korean War, 3 of them were Minesweepers). The Doyle was deployed off the coast of Korea during the Korean War and served in many minesweeping and support roles. Near the end of his service in the Navy, Gene was asked to participate in the filming of _"Caine Mutiny, The (1954)_. He appears in probably the most poignant scene in the movie, when Captain DeVriess is leaving the ship after being relieved by Captain Queeg, DeVriess is presented with a wristwatch by the crew of the Caine. Starns is the Bosun's Mate who 'Pipes the Captain Ashore', a longstanding Naval tradition in which the Bosun's Mate alerts the parties on shore to expect the Captain's boat. He whistles a distinctive series of pipe tunes which are carefully, and artfully, incorporated into the musical score of the film. He left the Navy in 1953 to return to college and become an educator with San Juan Unified School District in Sacramento, California; eventually earning his Masters Degree in Elementary Education. He is now retired and resides in Oregon where he continues his efforts to educate children of all ages.
David graduated from the Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Art in 1975 and went on to perform in numerous theatres around the UK. He made his professional debut in 1975 when he appeared in a production of 'Cyrano De Bergerac' at the Chichester Festival Theatre. His West End debut was in 1985 at the Queens Theatre playing Urban, with Charlton Heston in "The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial". His TV debut was in the comedy series "Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em". Since then he has appeared in numerous single high-profile TV dramas as well as the top TV soaps "Coronation Street" and "Emmerdale", including playing the vicar in "Heartbeat". He made his film debut in 2006 in "Sparkle" with Stockard Channing and Bob Hoskins.
A native of San Francisco, California, Mario Lara received his artistic training in Drama & Musical Theatre at Carnegie Mellon University under the direction of Tony-Winner Mel Shapiro. An actor, tenor and former dancer Mario has performed in over 100 plays, musicals, ballets & operas. Mario has had the honor of working with Award Winning Broadway & Film Directors Ang Lee, Rob Marshall, John DeLuca, David Mamet, Mike Nichols, Mel Shapiro, Adam Shankman, Jennifer Getzinger, Oren Safdie, Kevin Carlisle, Rudy Tronto, Emile Ardolino, Lois Englund, Karen Azenberg, Pamela Hunt, Dan Mojica & Glenn Casale. Mario has also had the Honor of Working & Training with such Talented Artists as Sir Ian McKellen, Sir Anthony Hopkins, Dame Judi Dench, Annette Bening, Gabriel Byrne, Richard Dreyfuss, Whoopi Goldberg, Harvey Keitel, Ron Perlman, Jonathan Pryce, Leslie Caron, Kim Novak & Maggie Smith...to name a few. Favorite roles include Father Sanchez in "In The Shade of The Lemon Tree" Directed By Oren Safdie, Juan in "All This, & Heaven Too" opposite Tony Winner Sammy Williams, Don Jose in "Carmen," Che, Magaldi & Peron in "Evita," Capt. Blakely in "The Caine Mutiny," Egeus in "A Midsummer Night's Dream," Munoz in "City of Angels," Bob Cratchit in "Scrooge," Julio in "Paint Your Wagon," Al & Paul in "A Chorus Line, Carlos in "The Me Nobody Knows," Bernardo in 12 international productions of "West Side Story," King Kalimari in "King Kalimari The Musical" Directed By Derek Taylor Kent & "The Desert Song" Directed By Emmy Winner John DeLuca. Mario has appeared (& disappeared) in the following Film & TV productions: "Fracture," "Guess Who?," "The Hulk," "Matrix Reloaded,""The Wedding Planner," "Stigmata," "City of Angels," "Miss Match," "Luis," "Wanda At Large" & the HBO Film of David Mamet's "Lansky" Starring Richard Dreyfuss. Mario has been happily married to Photographer/ Cinematographer, Terriel Lara for more than 25 wonderful years.
He was born James Eugene Mishler in St. Paul, Minnesota and moved to Chicago at a very early age. He fought in W.W. 2 as a paratrooper with the O.S.S.., attached to the 82nd and 101st airborne. After the war, he returned to Chicago and enrolled in the Goodman Theater, at the University of Chicago. It was there that he met his future wife, Jacqueline Jones. After moving to Florida and California they settled in Long Island, New York where they studied under Uta Hagen. In New York he did Broadway and Off-Broadway shows including The Cain Mutiny Court Martial and the Three Penny Opera. While working on stage and TV he started doing commercials and at one point was in more commercials than any other actor. In 1965 he moved his family to Rome, Italy and did extensive movie work and dubbing. The family moved back to the States in the early 1970s and he was working on and off until he was asked to be Hemingway in a Vanity Fair photo shoot. That photo shoot got him to write a one-man play about Hemingway in Cuba. In it, Hemingway is in a cantina talking about his past while waiting for a reporter to arrive for an interview. The play got great reviews and was filmed, but never aired. He died at the age of 80 having lived a full life.
Vikas Banger was born in Beed, small town in Maharashtra. After completing his studies form Aurangabad, he enrolled in Acting School.Graduated in acting from Whistling woods International Film School. He spend a year in China learning martial arts. He acted in play The Caine Mutiny directed by Naseeruddin Shah. Have also acted in 3 short films.