The Straight Dope

Go Back   Straight Dope Message Board > Main > Cafe Society

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #151  
Old 02-01-2017, 06:40 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Benjamin Franklin Howard Da Silva famously originated the role of Jud Fry in the '40s on Broadway in Oklahoma! after (a) fielding a dozen other roles on Broadway, and (b) picking up a college degree.

Da Silva also got plenty of prominent-placement-on-the-poster work in movies during the '40s; he was third-billed in Bullet Scars, and third-billed in Border Incident, and third after Cathy O'Donnell and Farley Granger in They Live By Night, and third after Gary Cooper and Paulette Goddard in Unconquered, and so on.

Da Silva wasn't really leading-man material -- though he did manage to get second billing, in the WWII flick Five Were Chosen -- but the point is, he was all over the place; The Lost Weekend was of course Ray Milland's vehicle all the way, but that was Da Silva's name on yet another poster all the same; and that was his name again, as big as Alan Ladd's, on the poster for The Great Gatsby; and his name, as big as William Holden's or Sterling Hayden's, on the poster for Blaze of Noon; you couldn't really miss him, what with one high-profile role after another.
Reply With Quote
Advertisements  
  #152  
Old 02-01-2017, 12:25 PM
tracer tracer is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: Silicon Valley, Cal., USA
Posts: 15,729
My dad told me that when he went from high school to college (in the 1950s), his grades dropped from straight A's to straight C's. College, back in the day, was hard. My GPA hardly flinched when I went from high school to college in 1983. By then, College had become a lot easier.

Kids these days, they don't know how good they have it! <shakes fist>
Reply With Quote
  #153  
Old 02-02-2017, 12:05 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Hey, consider James Thurber, who (a) was arguably famous enough to qualify for this thread before 1950; but who, despite all his years of schooling, (b) failed to graduate from Ohio State because "his poor eyesight prevented him from taking a mandatory ROTC course. In 1995 he was posthumously awarded a degree."

Boy, talk about lowering standards.

Switching gears entirely, consider William Fawcett -- a WWI veteran who earned a PhD before becoming a professor of theater arts at Michigan State before deciding he'd try his luck in Hollywood. "He sought a part as a college professor but was turned down on the grounds that he did not fit the part." Vowing not to let a little thing like 'irony as she is cast' stop him, he soon got name-on-the-poster billing in a western, followed by getting it again in this poster for another western, and then again in a poster for yet another western and then in the poster for another western before it was 1949 and suddenly there Fawcett's name was on this here poster for the other type of riding-around-on-horseback movie: THE ADVENTURES OF SIR GALAHAD, where he scored third billing as Merlin -- after second-billed Nelson Leigh as King Arthur and top-billed George Reeves as the title character, sure; but Fawcett's name is just as big there as those of the others for a reason, y'know?

(At that, while the story of George Reeves is the story of Pasadena Junior College, Nelson Leigh was a USC grad who got top-billed as Paul of Tarsus in one movie and Jesus Christ in another, both before 1950, which seemed worth mentioning.)
Reply With Quote
  #154  
Old 02-03-2017, 06:05 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
After graduating Phi Beta Kappa from Indiana University, Catherine Craig had a pretty good run as a leading lady in Hollywood -- she was second-billed to Richard Travis in SPY TRAIN, and she was second-billed to Richard Denning in SEVEN WERE SAVED, and she was second-billed to Albert Dekker in THE PRETENDER, and she was second-billed to John Calvert in APPOINTMENT WITH MURDER -- and she otherwise spent the 1940s getting name-on-the-poster billing in a western with Randolph Scott and a musical with Bing Crosby and thus and such. (Plus, figure that Craig had an extra measure of fame due to, y'know, being married to Robert Preston.)
Reply With Quote
  #155  
Old 02-04-2017, 10:11 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Someone else who got second-billed to Albert Dekker: Mike Mazurki, who got a BA from Manhattan College before getting prominent billing in THE FRENCH KEY. (In between, Mazurki was third-billed on the poster for DICK TRACY -- which was pretty respectable, since the #1 and #2 spots were clearly set aside for the folks playing Dick Tracy and Tess Trueheart -- and he got third billing in THE DEVIL'S HENCHMEN, too, along with tons of other name-on-the-poster work in the '40s: that was him in MURDER, MY SWEET with Dick Powell and I WALK ALONE with Burt Lancaster and KILLER DILL with Stu Erwin and SINBAD THE SAILOR with Douglas Fairbanks Jr and RELENTLESS with Robert Young and ABBOTT AND COSTELLO GO TO HOLLYWOOD.)
Reply With Quote
  #156  
Old 02-05-2017, 11:34 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Incidentally, that DICK TRACY movie I just mentioned had Morgan Conway earning top billing in that title role before he got it again in DICK TRACY VS CUEBALL a year later; and, in between, he was second-billed as a crusading attorney opposite leading lady Bonita Granville in THE TRUTH ABOUT MURDER; and, per IMDB, "Columbia University graduate Conway, incidentally a founding member of the Screen Actors Guild," picked up yet other name-on-the-movie-poster work in the 1940s.
Reply With Quote
  #157  
Old 02-06-2017, 06:38 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Per wiki, Martha Hyer "graduated from Arlington Heights High School and then from Northwestern University with a degree in drama. She was in the sorority Pi Beta Phi with actress Patricia Neal."

Patricia Neal, of course, went on to spend the '40s winning a Tony on Broadway and getting second-billed to Ronald Reagan in one film and Gary Cooper in another; but that's another story for another time; I just want to note that Martha Hyer spent the '40s getting prominent placement on the poster for this Tim Holt western and that Tim Holt western and another Tim Holt western -- getting second-billed in that one instead of third -- before it was the '50s and she picked up an Oscar nomination.
Reply With Quote
  #158  
Old 02-07-2017, 06:31 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Christine McIntyre "received a Bachelor of Music degree at Chicago Musical College in 1933" and put it to use in the classiest way possible: helping along stories where the Three Stooges do their schtick around, y'know, normals.

Shemp has to get married in 48 hours in order to inherit his uncle's fortune? Okay, have McIntyre smack him around after kissing him in a mistaken-identity plot before a phone call straightens everything out -- and put her name on the poster. You need an old woman who gets a Fountain-of-Youth treatment to win back her husband, who then overdoses on the stuff and becomes a baby? Yeah, that'll be McIntyre -- and bill her right after the Stooges. And bill her right after the Stooges as the lady who alibis 'em for a crime they didn't commit, puts 'em to work at her café, and has 'em check out the spooky old mansion. And bill her right after the Stooges as the princess who loves a common blacksmith. And bill her right after the Stooges as the murderess (or IS she?) investigated by a trio of inept private eyes; bill her right after the Stooges if they're sailors on the high seas, or plumbers foiling an art heist, or janitors who realize dat goil is a potential singing star, forever and ever, amen.

That's not all she did in the '40s, of course; she was third-billed on the posters for three different Johnny 'Mack' Brown westerns, and second-billed on the posters for various Hugh Herbert comedies, and so on; heck, she was even getting third-billed for some name-on-the-poster acting and singing back in the '30s. But, man, did they ever love plastering her face and figure up there on posters where the alternative was just having people look at three guys who weren't exactly matinee-idol handsome.
Reply With Quote
  #159  
Old 02-08-2017, 06:31 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Janis Carter has a good-sized write-up on IMDB. "After graduating with two degrees (Arts and Music) from Mather College (Western Reserve) in Cleveland, Ohio in 1935," says her entry, "Janis headed to New York with aspirations of embarking on a musical career in opera."

And after fielding Broadway roles in the '30s, she headed to Hollywood and started getting name-on-the-poster roles in the movies -- in, well, JUST OFF BROADWAY, of course; and in CADET GIRL in 1941, and in SECRET AGENT OF JAPAN in 1942, and in SWING OUT THE BLUES in 1943, and so on -- and then, in 1944, Carter started picking up second-billed-to-the-leading-man roles: in THE GHOST THAT WALKS ALONE, and again in GIRL IN THE CASE, and again in THE MARK OF THE WHISTLER; and, after more second-billed work in ONE MYSTERIOUS NIGHT, and THE MISSING JUROR, she was back for second-billed sequel work in, well, THE POWER OF THE WHISTLER.

Carter then went on to pick up second billing under leading man du jour Gerald Mohr, in THE NOTORIOUS LONE WOLF; and then she picked up second billing under leading man William Gargan in NIGHT EDITOR; and then she picked up second billing under leading man Glenn Ford, in FRAMED; and et cetera, throughout the '40s.

Last edited by The Other Waldo Pepper; 02-08-2017 at 06:34 AM..
Reply With Quote
  #160  
Old 02-09-2017, 07:40 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Once upon a time, Horace McNally "was a graduate of Fordham Law School and practiced law for several years before pursuing a childhood dream of becoming an actor." And he soon got work on Broadway, in the play JOHNNY BELINDA.

Possibly you've heard of him? I mean, he got name-on-the-poster work in assorted movies -- like this one about a blind detective; or this one, with Laurel and Hardy; and this one, in glorious Technicolor; or this one, THIRTY SECONDS OVER TOKYO, starring Spencer Tracy; or this one, MAGNIFICENT DOLL, with an odd love triangle involving Ginger Rogers and David Niven and Burgess Meredith?

No?

Well, who the hell ever heard of a movie star named Horace? So he swapped it for Stephen McNally on the poster when JOHNNY BELINDA got (a) the movie treatment, and (b) a dozen Oscar nominations. And so it's Stephen McNally on the poster for ROGUES' REGIMENT; and on the poster for CRISS CROSS, with Burt Lancaster; and on the poster for THE LADY GAMBLES, with Barbara Stanwyck; and on the poster for SWORD IN THE DESERT, with Dana Andrews; and what with those prominent third-billed roles I was just yammering on about, he even managed to score top billing in CITY ACROSS THE RIVER in 1949, as per this poster right here.

(See how that poster also mentions young Tony Curtis? Yeah, back then he was still getting billed as "Anthony Curtis". I mean, yes, sure, he'd of course moved on from "Bernard Schwartz" -- but he still wasn't quite getting it right.)
Reply With Quote
  #161  
Old 02-10-2017, 06:09 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
As per Wikipedia, Clifton Fadiman picked up an undergraduate degree from Columbia in 1925. He graduated Phi Beta Kappa. Fadiman had ambitions to become a scholar, but at graduation, the chairman of the English Department told him "We have room for only one Jew, and we have chosen Mr. Trilling."

So he instead became an English teacher, and worked his way up through the ranks at Simon & Schuster until he was Chief Editor -- it was his idea to make a book out of the Ripley's Believe It Or Not strip from the newspapers -- and he took charge of the book review section in the New York Times, during which time he repeatedly emceed the National Book Award ceremonies, and probably none of that counts.

It *does*, though, help to explain why he hosted Information Please, the radio quiz show, from 1938 to 1948 -- with every celebrity from Orson Welles to Groucho Marx to Alfred Hitchcock to Boris Karloff stopping by to serve as a guest panelist -- and then hosting This Is Show Business on television, from 1949 to 1952.
Reply With Quote
  #162  
Old 02-11-2017, 06:48 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
And, speaking of Jews who got college degrees and appeared on Information Please, there's Mike Wallace: long before 60 Minutes, he was just a guy with a BA from the University of Michigan and an authoritative 'radio narrator' voice -- which is why he was the announcer for The Green Hornet (starring college grad Al Hodge, who went on to play Captain Video during the golden age of television) and for Sky King and for Curtain Time and for The Spike Jones Show and so on.

And, again, while that maybe doesn't add up to what the OP had in mind, it probably explains why people in the industry tapped him for leading-man work on primetime television back in '49 -- because, well, *someone* was going to investigate crimes as Lieutenant Kidd on ABC's Stand By For Crime, right? So why not the voice of detective Lou Kagle, star of the Crime On The Waterfront radio show?
Reply With Quote
  #163  
Old 02-12-2017, 09:08 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
After "graduating from Boston College", John Charles Daly was the first radio correspondent to deliver the news of the attack on Pearl Harbor, sure as he was also the first to relay the news report of FDR's death to the public.

Daly was the archetypal "1940s breaking news guy", is what I'm saying.

Which is why, after he'd served as a panelist on Celebrity Time, he was the guy that got picked to play Walter Burns in the TV-series version of The Front Page in 1949. (Well, the first dozen-plus episodes aired in 1949, anyway; the last four then aired in January of 1950 -- after which Daly was busily bringing his name and fame to the job of hosting What's My Line? in the first week of February of 1950, the gig he of course continued in for the rest of the '50s and into the '60s.)

Last edited by The Other Waldo Pepper; 02-12-2017 at 09:13 AM..
Reply With Quote
  #164  
Old 02-13-2017, 05:59 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Incidentally, John Daly isn't to be mistaken for Tim Daly's dad, James Daly -- who, after "receiving a degree from Cornell College", spent the '40s fielding roles on Broadway and acting on The Philco-Goodyear Television Playhouse.

I don't think he counts, but I do think he's worth mentioning; likewise, I'm not sure that Les Brown ("And His Band Of Renown") quite made it to celebrity status, but (a) after he graduated from Duke in the '30s, he at least got pretty close; and (b) he's not to be mistaken for Les Damon, who graduated from Brown University before he and his wife were Nick and Nora Charles for all those years on the radio, as per the OP's mention of old-time radio shows. (Damon also got some television work -- he acted in a made-for-TV version of "The Glass Key" on Studio One In Hollywood in '49 -- but it's The Adventures Of The Thin Man that was already his claim to fame.)

Last edited by The Other Waldo Pepper; 02-13-2017 at 06:03 AM..
Reply With Quote
  #165  
Old 02-14-2017, 06:23 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Regis Toomey "graduated from the University of Pittsburgh" and then apparently set a record by sharing a three-minutes-plus-long on-screen smooch with Jane Wyman in YOU'RE IN THE ARMY NOW; in between, he got second-billed to his leading lady with roles in stuff like SHADOWS OF THE ORIENT and THE NURSE'S SECRET and KICK IN and FRAMED and RECKLESS ROADS and PICTURE BRIDES and RED MORNING -- just like he swung top billing in BIG TIME OR BUST and SOLDIERS OF THE STORM and GRAFT and THEY NEVER COME BACK and BARS OF HATE and THE MIDNIGHT PATROL.

He was still working after WWII, but he wasn't really a leading-man type any more; that's him as the detective in SPELLBOUND, but it's Gregory Peck you cast to do the interesting stuff with Ingrid Bergman. And, yeah, that's him as the Chief Inspector in THE BIG SLEEP, but obviously it's the world of Bogie and Bacall by then.

But there was a time when this guy was cast opposite Clara Bow, is my point.
Reply With Quote
  #166  
Old 02-15-2017, 05:44 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Hey, remember Jack Barry, from that quiz show scandal in the 1950s?

Yeah, he got that gig on TWENTY ONE after hosting LIFE BEGINS AT EIGHTY on NBC in 1952, and 1951 -- and, well, back to Day One on the job in January of 1950.

And he got that after hosting JUVENILE JURY on NBC in 1949 and 1948 and 1947.

(In fact, he kept hosting JUVENILE JURY in 1950 and 1951 and 1952 -- which is when it effectively combined with LIFE BEGINS AT EIGHTY, so Barry could host a show asking what folks young and old had to say about stuff on WISDOM OF THE AGES.)

Anyway, before all of that he was hosting the radio version of JUVENILE JURY back in 1946, just like he hosted the radio game show PUT UP OR SHUT UP -- and before that, he was a graduate of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.
Reply With Quote
  #167  
Old 02-16-2017, 06:36 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
And, for the other side of the equation, consider young Smylla Brind: born in Vienna to Jewish parents in the '20s, they fled Nazi persecution in the '30s; and in the '40s, after she'd made her way from mere understudy to Broadway performer, she got a little name-on-the-poster movie work as "Tessa Brind" in Youth Runs Wild before she put in years of panel-show radio work as one of the brainy Quiz Kids -- not, see, as a moderator, but as the talent, is my point.

And then -- as "Vanessa Brown" -- she went back for more name-on-the-poster movie work: in The Late George Apley, with IMDB and Wiki listing her as second-billed to leading man Ronald Colman. And then more name-on-the-poster work -- in movies ranging from The Ghost And Mrs Muir (with, y'know, Rex Harrison and Gene Tierney) over to The Foxes Of Harrow (with Harrison again, this time with Maureen O'Hara) over to Mother Wore Tights (with Betty Grable and Dan Dailey) -- but since all of that was as a teenager who didn't have a college degree, I suppose it wouldn't much matter whether it all arguably adds up to 'celebrity' status.

But then she graduated from UCLA in 1949 -- the year she got name-on-the-poster work in The Heiress, with Olivia de Havilland and Montgomery Clift. Actually, it was also the same year she got name-on-the-poster work in Big Jack, with Wallace Beery and Richard Conte; heck, it was even the same year she got name-on-the-poster work as the leading lady in The Secret Of St Ives, getting second-billed to leading man Richard Ney in that adventure flick, which hit theaters that June -- and, in July, she was signed as the new "Jane", second-billed to Lex Barker's "Tarzan".

Of course, their Tarzan flick didn't actually come out until 1950 -- but the point is, she was already out there as a known quantity with a known quantity of fame.
Reply With Quote
  #168  
Old 02-17-2017, 06:03 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Incidentally, the next "Jane" to star opposite a "Tarzan" after Vanessa Brown was Dorothy Hart -- who "graduated from Case Western Reserve University with a BA degree. She was also a member of Kappa Alpha Theta."

I said "after" there -- but Hart was maybe six years older than Brown, and so had already picked up plenty of name-on-the-movie-poster work in the 1940s: here's an example from a Randolph Scott western, with her name listed bigger than everyone else's except the leading man and his leading lady; and here's one for a Sonja Henie flick -- wiki and IMDB list Hart as third-billed in that one, though the poster only has her at fourth -- and here's one for a John-Payne-and-Joan-Caulfield film; and here's one for a William-Powell-and-Shelley-Winters film; and you can see from this poster that she was third-billed after the folks playing Calamity Jane and Sam Bass in, well, CALAMITY JANE AND SAM BASS; and from this one, that she was third-billed -- though in print as big as the other two -- in THE STORY OF MOLLY X; and here's her face and name from when she was third-billed -- in print as big as the other two -- in the film noir that was UNDERTOW; and she was, of course, third-billed in the Oscar-bait flick THE NAKED CITY, as you can tell by seeing her face and name here.

But, hey, don't take my word for it...
Reply With Quote
  #169  
Old 02-18-2017, 07:14 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
In 1934, Art Linkletter "earned a bachelor's degree in teaching from San Diego State Teachers College (now San Diego State University) ... After receiving his teaching degree, Linkletter decided to go to work as a radio announcer at KGB in San Diego, because radio paid better than teaching."

Yes, that was so long ago that "KGB" was innocuous. Anyhow, by '43 he was hosting the People Are Funny radio show for NBC, and was such a hit that -- well, yes, he kept hosting it through to the '50s and even into the '60s; but it also led to him hosting House Party, later renamed Art Linkletter's House Party, which started on CBS Radio in '45 and which also had a crazy long run and which is of course best remembered nowadays for its Kids Say The Darndest Things segment.

He then parlayed all of that into plenty of television work in the '50s -- but he was already there in the '40s, is my point. (You know, People Are Funny was so big in the '40s that they made a People Are Funny feature film, in '46; sort of an origin story, where a radio producer of the out-to-land-the-big-sponsor variety tries to come up with a sure-fire hit. "Radio's Most Hilarious Program Is On the Screen At Last!", the poster says; "ART LINKLETTER", it says. Because, uh, why wouldn't it?)
Reply With Quote
  #170  
Old 02-19-2017, 03:39 PM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Harvard grad John Mason Brown hosted the Americana game show for NBC in 1947 and part of 1948 -- at which point it got handed off to Joseph Deems Taylor, sure as Brown then hosted Critic at Large for ABC in 1948 and 1949 -- just like Brown also hosted Tonight on Broadway for CBS before 1950, thereby hitting the trifecta.
Reply With Quote
  #171  
Old 02-20-2017, 06:30 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Incidentally, while I could make a case for that guy I'd just mentioned -- NYU man Deems Taylor, who got a healthy amount of work on radio and television and in the movies back then -- it seems more interesting to focus on the guy who replaced him as the host of Americana: Ben Grauer, who took over in 1948 and stuck with it into 1949 before NBC gave him The Ben Grauer Show in 1950.

Grauer got tons of radio work before that; and before that, he received his BA from the City College of New York in 1930. (And before that, he was a child actor earning movie credits in the 1920s -- but that's another story for another time.)
Reply With Quote
  #172  
Old 02-21-2017, 06:07 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
For the other end of things, once upon a time there was a guy who "graduated with honors from the University of Wisconsin with a degree in economics" after getting elected senior class president; the story goes that he went into banking, but after a brush with death of the "emergency appendectomy" variety realized that life is too short to not pursue one's dreams, and so he threw himself into acting.

Anyhow, he turned out to arguably be the finest actor of his generation -- winning Oscar after Oscar before winning Tony after Tony -- because, hey, Fredric March.

(Heck, he earned another Oscar nomination in the '30s, as the go-to choice to play a past-his-prime actor in A STAR IS BORN -- and yet he was still out there, earning yet another other Oscar nomination in the '50s, as the go-to choice to play Willy Loman in DEATH OF A SALESMAN. And neither role was anything like March's celebrated turn as Jekyll and Hyde; the guy was just all over the place, is all.)
Reply With Quote
  #173  
Old 02-22-2017, 06:43 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
For what it's worth, March got that Oscar nomination for playing Willy Loman opposite Mildred Dunnock, who of course got an Oscar nomination of her own for playing his wife in that 1951 production. Which doesn't, for this thread, count -- though I figure it's probably worth mentioning that she got that movie role because she'd created it on Broadway in the 1940s, when Death of a Salesman won the Tony for Best Play in 1949 -- and she'd gotten work in a dozen other Broadway productions before that, and before that she'd graduated from Goucher College and then earned a master's degree in theatre arts from Columbia University.

Which brings to mind Don Beddoe -- who "graduated from the University of Cincinnati with bachelor's and master's degrees and taught English for three years" and who got work in a dozen Broadway productions after he "made his Broadway acting debut in 1929, receiving top billing (over a young Spencer Tracy) in Nigger Rich."

That's . . . not really a line I expected to see on wikipedia.

Well, be that as it may; Beddoe was done with Broadway after 1944, sure as he got all sorts of name-on-the-movie-poster work before the end of 1949 -- in this one and this one and this one and this one and this one and this one and this one and this one and this one and this one and this one and this one and this one -- and, granted, he apparently didn't get top billing in a movie until after 1949, but I think Beddoe still hit "Hey, It's That Guy" status well before that; you'd see him in a Three Stooges short like You Nazty Spy, or in a Best Picture winner like The Best Years Of Our Lives, or in a Charlie Chan film or in the Mandrake The Magician serial or in the Blondie movies or whatever, forever and ever, amen.

(Oh, and he was a castmember on John's Other Wife; I'm skipping tons of big-screen roles -- an Alan Ladd flick, and a Cary Grant flick, and a William Holden flick, and an Abbott and Costello flick, and so on -- but wanted to mention his radio work.)
Reply With Quote
  #174  
Old 02-23-2017, 07:04 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
And, as long as I'm on about March, let me quickly note that he only got top billing in that Jekyll-and-Hyde picture after "studio head Adolph Zukor suggested Irving Pichel for the part. Director Rouben Mamoulian turned it down because he wanted an actor who could play both parts convincingly, and felt Pichel could only play Hyde."

And I guess he was right, since Pichel then got various name-on-the-poster roles as a bad guy; he was the nefarious Zarnoff in DICK TRACYS G-MEN, and he was Fagin in OLIVER TWIST, sure as he was the lusty blackmailer in a Tallulah Bankhead movie, and he was the villain of the piece in a flick with Lilyan Tashman; and, sure, you cast Kent Taylor as the innocent man out to clear his name, but it's Pichel as the crooked lawyer who framed our hero and deserves to get brought to justice; and, yes, you cast Lyle Talbot as the leading man, but give second billing to Pichel as the mad scientist; and, granted, you cast Phillips Holmes as the Southern gentleman, and Pichel as the evil Union officer to be foiled by a plucky youth and his pal the slave, because, holy crap, old-timey Hollywood.

Anyway, like I was saying he got name-on-the-poster work in plenty of other stuff before the end of the '40s, as seen here and here and here and here and here and here and here -- but before that, he "graduated from Harvard University in 1914".
Reply With Quote
  #175  
Old 02-24-2017, 05:52 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Milton Caniff graduated from OSU and got a job with the local newspaper in Ohio, and after a year or two of that headed to NYC to work for the Associated Press: inheriting the Mister Gilfeather panel feature when Al Capp called it quits.

Caniff soon got asked to come up with a new comic strip for syndication, and then pretty much hit it out of the park with Terry and the Pirates in the '30s -- which explains why he did it again with the Steve Canyon comic strip in the '40s.

I suppose that also explains why, in 1948 and 1949, he served as president of the National Cartoonists Society. And I suppose it *also* explains why, in 1948 and 1949, Caniff had a steady gig as one of the regular panelists on Quizzing the News, the prime-time quiz show on Monday nights on ABC.
Reply With Quote
  #176  
Old 02-25-2017, 06:55 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Mason Welch Gross already had a Harvard PhD when he started teaching at Columbia in the '30s, sure as he then became president of Rutgers in the '50s -- but in between, he became the moderator of the Think Fast game show on ABC in the '40s.

(I mean, he was still on that show in 1950; and it was still the '50s when he spent years as the judge on the primetime game show Two For The Money; but that's as irrelevant to this thread as his years serving in Army Intelligence, right?)
Reply With Quote
  #177  
Old 02-26-2017, 08:42 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Ernest Chappell graduated from Syracuse University in 1925 and spent years as the announcer on The Adventures of Ellery Queen -- and on The Campbell Playhouse, when Orson Welles landed that sponsor for his "Mercury Theatre" radio show -- and had a steady gig hosting the Are You A Genius? quiz show for CBS before he became the announcer and lead actor on Quiet, Please in '47 and '48 and '49, the syndicated show with guest stars ranging from Claudia Morgan to J. Pat O'Malley.

That's presumably why Chappell was a sure thing for television in general -- and why, in '51 and '52 and '53, he was at work on The Big Story in particular -- but the point is, yeah, he was already there on radio in the '40s.
Reply With Quote
  #178  
Old 02-27-2017, 06:42 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Broadway actor Roman Bohnen was another guy who got name-on-the-poster work in tons of movies back when; in this one, with William Bendix and Susan Hayward; and in this one, with Cary Grant and Ethel Barrymore; and in this one, with George Raft and Sylvia Sidney; and in this one, and in this one, and in this one -- and in this one, THE AFFAIRS OF JIMMY VALENTINE, since, well, that's *him* as Jimmy Valentine.

Anyhow, all of that -- and his roles in assorted Oscar-bait flicks, from JOAN OF ARC to THE BEST YEARS OF OUR LIVES to OF MICE AND MEN -- came after "graduating in 1923 with a B.A." from the University of Minnesota.
Reply With Quote
  #179  
Old 02-28-2017, 06:06 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Doodles Weaver graduated from Stanford -- although he "was reportedly suspended from Stanford in 1937 (the year he graduated) for pulling a prank on the train home from the Rose Bowl." What, you were expecting "studious" from a Doodles?

Anyhow, he bounced around on various radio programs until landing a steady gig on The Spike Jones Show in '47 and '48 and '49 -- while they rotated in guests ranging from Frank Sinatra to Basil Rathbone to Don Ameche to Burl Ives -- and, like I often say, Weaver was also picking up name-on-the-poster work in the movies; that's him getting so billed here and here after he was Hannibal Hoops in the LI'L ABNER flick; but that's the tail wagging the dog; it's his radio stuff that got him the movie stuff (and, at that, got him television stuff -- since, sure, he didn't get his own TV show until after the deadline, in '51; but he was appearing on TV -- specifically, on NBC's "Hour Glass" variety show -- before the deadline, back in the '40s).

That said, you maybe know him better as "The Uncle Of Sigourney Weaver".
Reply With Quote
  #180  
Old 03-01-2017, 10:41 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
And, speaking of Sigourney Weaver's uncle, let me mention Bill Slater: a West Point grad who picked up a master's at Columbia and was the primary voice of Paramount newsreels for years, and who did the commentary for the first televised World Series broadcast in '47 -- which, yes, was also the year he was the chief radio announcer for the Indy 500; but it's also when he started hosting the Charade Quiz TV game show in prime time, a gig he continued in '48 and '49.

Incidentally, by '49 he'd also been hosting Twenty Questions on the radio for years, and so was the natural choice to start hosting that on television likewise; he'd also been hosting the Luncheon At Sardi's radio show for years by then, which is why his kid brother Tom Slater was later the natural choice to swap in as the host of that; and then Tom's kid went on to some minor success as a soap-opera actor in the '70s, sure as his kid -- Christian Slater -- was back at the Golden Globes just this past January, seeing if he'd pick up a second supporting-actor win for Mr. Robot.

Which -- huh. This thread kept going on as November gave way to December; and when 2016 gave way to 2017 in January; and now February has given way to March; and the OP, he's been gone a long time; it's been well over a month since he's posted hereabouts in general, and plenty longer since he's posted in this thread in particular; I don't know what the odds are of him popping in to say, gosh, maybe I should rethink stuff, as it's danged easy to google folks who (a) went to college and then (b) made a name for themselves in radio or on the screen, but there doesn't seem much point in me continuing to go on and on and on about it; if anybody else with the inclination feels like bumping the thread, just know that examples abound.
Reply With Quote
Reply



Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:18 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@chicagoreader.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Publishers - interested in subscribing to the Straight Dope?
Write to: sdsubscriptions@chicagoreader.com.

Copyright © 2017 Sun-Times Media, LLC.