- Harlan Sanders
- b. Henryville, IN 9/9/1890
- d. Shelbyville, KY 12/16/80
- Famous for his chicken recipe, he appeared in at least five feature films, usually as himself.
- Chris Schenkel
- b. Bippus, IN 8/21/24
- Nationally known radio and television sportscaster, he appeared in two films and his voice was used in one, "Goodby Columbus"
- Wade Schenck
- b. Indianapolis, IN 8/28/67
- His only movie was "Hoosiers" (1986). He had no
acting experience when cast by director David Anspaugh for the part of "Ollie," the quiet little substitute who made the winning
free throw in the big game. His biggest challenge was to try to look like a mediocre basketball player. In reality, he was a
very good high school player. His biggest regret was the loss of several scenes with just he and Gene hackman talking together
in a cornfield. His sister played a cheerleader in the film. He is married and lives in Hendricks County, Indiana.
- Paul Scherrer(Paul Scherier,Jr.)
- b. Indianapolis, IN
- Graduate of North Central High School in Indianapolis, Paul Scherrer started in television in the 1980's. He was on "The Dick Van Dyke Show" in 1988 as Eric Olander and was Robb Harper in "Free Spirits" a 1989 TV series. He made his last film in 1998 and is now in real estate in Sherman Oaks, CA.
- Tom Seidel (Emil Seidel)
- b. Indianapolis, IN 3/11/17
- d. California 12/7/92
- Started in films in 1938 in the film, "Dick Tracy Returns." Usually a supporting player or bit player. Appeared uncredited in "My Gal Sal" (1942), story of Hoosier Paul Dresser.
- Bobby Sherwood
- b. Indianapolis, IN 5/30/14
- Actor, Composer. Appeared in three films including "Pal Joey" in 1957. Was a regular performer on the "Red Buttons Show" on TV in the fifties. Was host of game show "Quick as a Flash" in 1953. He composed the music for at least one film, "Campus Sleuth" 1948.
- Bill Shirk (William Poorman)
- b. Muncie, IN
- Graduate of Ball State University, his father owned an advertising agency in Muncie and then bought WERK AM, a Muncie radio station. Shirk moved from teaching into radio. Bought WXLW in Indianapolis and then received the license for WHHH FM. Expanded his interests to owning a low power television station and a second FM station in the Indy area. Became an escape artist and made the film, Modern Day Houdini in 1983. (Later title was changed to "The Escapist").
- Bill Shirley
- b. Indianapolis, IN 7/6/21
- d. Los Angeles, 8/27/89
- Attended Shortridge High School in Indianapolis. He started in films in 1941. Best known for his portrayal of Stephen Foster in "I Dream of Jeannie" 1952. He was the voice of
Prince Phillip in Disney's "Sleeping Beauty" 1959, and the singing voice of
Freddy played by Jeremy Brett in "My Fair Lady" 1964. He is buried in
Crown Hill Cemetery in Indianapolis.
- Red Skelton (Richard Bernard Skelton)
- b. Vincennes, IN 7/18/13
- d. Rancho Mirage, CA 9/17/97
- The son of a circus clown who died two months after his birth, Skelton left school after the seventh grade to join a medicine show. Followed this touring with a tent show, minstrel group, showboat and finally vaudeville. Met actor Mickey Rooney who arranged for his first appearance in motion pictures. He had a very successful career in three media..radio, motion pictures and television. He became a popular radio entertainer and followed that with a very successful televison series which ran eighteen years on NBC and CBS. His show was consistently in the top twenty. He delighted audiences with his many characters which included "Clem Kaddiddlehopper", "George Appleby" and the seagulls "Gertrude and Heathcliffe." His movie career was mostly with MGM studios where he made such films as, "Merton of the Movies," "A Southern Yankee," "The Fuller Brush Man," "Neptune's Daughter," "The Yellow Cab Man," "Three Little Words," and "Excuse My Dust." He became a very successful painter of clowns after he left television.
- Buy these books at amazon.com...
- Click here for images of
Red Skelton (6).
- James J. Sloyan
- b. Indianapolis, IN
- First film was
"The Travelling Executioner" in 1970. Played feature roles in a number of major films including..."The Sting" (1973),
"Xanadu" (1980). Was a regular on TV's "Westside Medical" (1977) and played Madeline Kahn's husband on
"Oh Madeline" (1987). He has appeared in a multitude of television roles while making feature films. In 1989 he became
the voice for the Lexus TV commercials. He was the voice of the interrogator in the 1993 TV series, "Crime and Punishment."
He played swindler Robert Vesco in "Vesco" (1994).
- Sam Smiley
- b. Columbus, IN Feb. 15, 1931
role was in "Hoosiers" (1986) as a Referee. Has appeared in several theatrical and made-for-TV movies since then.
- Tavis Smiley
b. Kokomo, IN
- Was host for "BET Tonight" for five years. Also a regular on radio's nationally syndicated, "Tom Joyner Morning Show."
Has won two NAACP Image Awards.
- Christopher Stack
b. Indianapolis, IN
- In 2007 he signed a four year contract
with the longtime ABC soap opera One Life to Live. He plays Dr. Michael McBain on the show. He previously was in As
the World Turns and has a number of movie and television credits.
- Jeffrey Stone (John Forrest Fontaine)
b. Detroit, MI 12/16/26
Detroit, he was placed in the Knightstown Soldiers' and Sailors' Home as a child. His father was killed in an auto accident
when he was two years old. His mother and stepfather moved to Indianapolis and he joined them there after he left the home. He
joined a theater group and was given the part of Tony Kirby in You Can't Take it With You at the Indianapolis Civic
Theater. David Selznick happened to be in the audience and came back stage to tell him to look him up if he ever came to
He hitch hiked to California and, true to his word, Selznick put him under contract. His first acting job was as the model for
Prince Charming in Disney's
Cinderella. From there he went on to become a busy actor, mostly in B movies. He was married to actresses Corinne Calvet
and Barbara Lawrence.
- T. J. Storm
- Indiana, feb. 14 (year unknown)
- Born in Indiana but raised in Hawaii, he is a world-class
martial artist who has trained in a variety of styles for 19 years. He holds belts in Arashi-Ryu Karate, Tae Kwon Do, Ninjitsu
and Northern Shaolin King Fu. He has appeared in "V.R.Troopers"(TV 1994), Dragon Fury (1995) and "Conan"
- Marc Summers (real name: Marc Berkowitz)
- b. 11/11/50, Indianapolis, IN
Graduate of North Central H.S. Television actor. Started as disc jockey, comedian, magician. In 1985 he was the host of TV
series "Double Dare." Was a game show host for several other TV series and then started acting in TV shows like
"Unsolved Mysteries." In Dec. 2002, he became host of "WinTuition" on the Game Show Network.
- b. February 12, 1891 Franklin, IN
- d. June 5, 1973 Los Angeles, CA (or Cottonwood,
AZ depending on source)
- Character actor and funnyman in Westerns from the mid-'30's. Began his career in vaudeville
and also worked with Gene Autry on the radio. Was Lullaby Joslin in the "Three Mesquiters" movies and
Alibi in the "Range Buster" series. Well known for his ventriloquist act with his dummy Elmer
Sneezeweed. Appeared in fellow Hoosier Ken Maynard's last western, Harmony Trail (1947). His son Robert
(born in Dayton OH) also acted in films, sometimes credited as Max Terhune Jr..
here for images of Max Terhune (3).
Tex Terry (Edward E. Terry)
- b. Coxville, Indiana, August 22, 1902
- d. May 18, 1985
- Appeared in several
hundred films from the early 1920s to the late 1950s. His screen credits were mostly in B Westerns. He supported such stars as
Gene Autry, "Wild Bill" Elliott, and Sunset Carson. Terry also was quite active in television, making a number of
appearances on Westerns, including Gunsmoke. He usually played heavies since he was a big man with a well-worn chiseled
face. He got his taste for Westerns and horses from serving in the U.S. Cavalry from 1919 to 1922. He later served as a private
in the army in WWII. He was buried in his hometown at the Coxville Cemetery in Coxville, Indiana.
- b. Gary, Indiana,
March 26, 1950.
- First role was in "The Jeffersons" (1975). Played Roger Thomas or "Raj" in "What's Happening?
(1976). Appeared in "A Piece of the Action" in 1977 and again as "Raj" in "What's Happening Now?" (1985).
Was in "Malcolm X" (1992) as Sidney.
- Randy Thompson
- b. Fort Wayne, Indiana,
Sept. 25, 1954.
- Actor and Director. Directed and acted in "Stages" (1990). Made several TV appearances
from 1991 to the present. Appeared in "Singles" (1992) as "Stu". Was a voice for "Batman and
Mr. Freeze" (1998) and played a library guard in "Desperate Measures" (1998).
- b. Terre Haute, Indiana, July 8, 1913
- d. July 15, 1971
- Best remembered for playing the henpecked husband Wallace Wimple on the "Fibber McGee and Molly" radio program. He also played a wide variety of unusual characters which allowed him a long and lucrative career in radio and cartoons. He was "The Old-Timer",Horatio K. Boomer, Vodka ("The Mad Russian")and Nick DePopolous on "Fibber McGee and Molly." He worked for Walt Disney and supplied voices for many cartoon characters in such features as "Lady and the Tramp," "Peter Pan,"(Voice of Mr. Smee) "Alice in Wonderland,"(Voice of the White Rabbit) and the voice of the Park Ranger in the Donald Duck cartoons. He created the character of "Droopy" for at least 25 cartoons. Appeared in several movies including "Look Who's Laughing" (1941) and "Here We Go Again" (1942).
- Donald Torres
- b. Indianapolis, IN
- A graduate of Shortridge High School, he received his Bachelor's and Master's degrees at Indiana University. He moved to New York in 1978 and began working in Broadway musicals and television commercials. Appeared with Barbra Streisand in "Funny Girl" and on TV shows such as "Cannon", "Barnaby Jones." Travels from Las Vegas to Europe and to the Orient. He considers himself a "romantic singer."
- Forrest Tucker
- b. Plainfield, Indiana, Feb. 12, 1919
- d. Woodland Hills, CA Oct. 25, 1986
- Very busy character actor. Multi-talented...could play villains as well as comics. Also was an excellent singer, touring very successfully as Professor Harold Hill in "The Music Man." He began working in 1940 with a memorable part in "The Westerner" with Gary Cooper. Was very busy in television but his best known role was in "F Troop." He was married three times and was the father of two daughters.
- Click here for images of Forrest Tucker (2).
- Jon Van Ness
- b. Summitville, Indiana
- A 1971 Butler University graduate, he honed his acting skills at the Christian Theological Seminary Repertory Theatre, Black Curtain Dinner Theatre, Brown County Playhouse and Starlight Musicals. Moved to New York, then to Hollywood where he was fortunate enough to appear in "Brubaker" (1980) with Robert Redford. Redford asked him to again appear with him in "The Natural" (1984). He played Ollie Olsen. Many movies and TV appearances including, "The Bostonians"(1984), "Let's Get Harry"(1986), "Trial by Fire" (TV)(1995) and "Scorpio One" (1997)
- Vincent Ventresca
- b. Indianapolis, IN April 29, 1965
- Attended Indiana University appearing in several productions there including Brown County Playhouse. In 1994 he appeared in "Friends" and made a TV movie, "Menendez: A Killing in Beverly Hills (1994). Appeared in a variety of television shows and at least four movies since 1994. Lead in two TV series, both cancelled...Prey and The Invisible Man (Darien Fawkes) television series...2000-2001.
- For more info on Vincent Ventresca and The Invisible Man, go to http://www.sicfi.com/invisibleman.
- b. Seymour, IN May 24, 1919
- d. Seymour, IN June 11, 1949
- His only film appearance was in The Wizard of Oz (1939)
as a Munchkin Townsman and as part of the Singer Midgets.
- Not born in Indiana, but always considered Fort Wayne his home.
- b. December 22, 1911
- d. Los Angeles, CA Nov. 29, 1986
- Busy character actor from 1934 to 1987.
- Andy Voils
- b. 1980, Brown County
- Played young Babe Ruth in The Babe (1992)
- Hunter von Leer (Paul Hunter Von Leer)
- b. Riley, IN 1944
- Won a silver medal in the Junior Olympics as a swimmer. Has made 1300 skydiving attempts and is the holder of the Midwest high Altitude record. In "Dallas" in 1986 joining fellow Hoosier Ken Kercheval. He played B.D. Calhoun. He was a regular on "General Hospital," and played "Skip," the lifeguard on the "Rockford Files" series. Notable films include, Cahill, U.S. Marshall (1973)The Missouri Breaks (1976) and with fellow Hoosier Shelley Long in Big Business(1988).
- Harry Von Zell
- b. Indianapolis, IN July 11, 1906
- d. Woodland Hills, CA Nov. 21, 1981
- Radio Announcer, Actor. His family moved to the west coast and Harry attended UCLA where he was involved in music and drama. He tried a variety of jobs until some friends tricked him into singing on a radio program. This led to offers from several stations and his career began. Finally auditioned for the job of announcer for Paul Whiteman's radio show. He won over 250 other candidates. When the series ended in 1930, he went to New York to become a CBS staff announcer. He worked for Fred Allen, Phil Baker, Ed Wynn, and Eddy
Duchin. He announced for "The March of Time" and finally became announcer for "Burns and Allen". In 1945 he began acting in films and appeared in at least 28 features.
- John P. Wade (John Patrick Wade)
- b. Indiana, June 30, 1876
- d. Hollywood, CA July 14, 1949
- Started in silent films in 1914, made the transition to sound and remained active in films until 1938. Played small roles, usually Board Chairman, Governor, rich man, etc. Appeared in at least 20 films.
- Raymond Walburn
- b. Plymouth, IN Sept. 9, 1887
- d. New York City July 26, 1969
- Left home at age 16 to join a stock company. Worked steadily all over the country. Made Broadway debut in
- "Mary Jane's Pa." Served in World War I. Began to
- appear in silent films, then easily moved into talkies. Became a favorite comic character in the 1930's and
- 40's, usually playing phony military types, con-men, and pompous charlatans. A favorite of Frank Capra, he was
- a phony racetrack con-man in Broadway Bill (1934)
- and repeated the same role for Capra in Riding High (1950). He was the press agent for fellow Hoosier
- Carole Lombard in Lady by Choice (1934).
- William Walker
- b. Pendleton, IN 1917
- d. Lancaster, California, January 4, 1992.
- Stuntman, actor, director, producer. He was the first black graduate of Pendleton high school in 1915 and as of 1972 when he came to Pendleton to be honored, he was still the ONLY black graduate of Pendleton H.S. He made his film debut in the 1945 film The Killers. He played butlers, waiters, chauffers and servants in over 100 films from 1947 to 1978. He was the undertaker in the 1959 production of Porgy and Bess. Perhaps his most memorable role was that of Rev. Sykes in To Kill a Mockingbird in 1962. His last film was The Wiz in 1978 where he was an uncredited voice in the "Wiz Singers." He served on the board of directors of the Screen Actors Guild.
- Gabe Ward (Otto Ward)
- b. Knightstown, IN November 26, 1904
- d. 1992
- Gabe, along with the five Trietsch brothers, who
were raised on a farm just seven miles south of Muncie on State Road 3, joined Mark Shafer in a group called, "Ezra Buzzington's
Rube Band." Two of the Trietsch brothers (Ken and Hezzie) joined Gabe Ward and began a show on WOWO radio in Ft. Wayne. They
hired a fourth member, Gil Taylor from Alabama, who could read music. Ken Trietsch began to write humorous tunes for them to
play and sing. They were now "The Hoosier Hotshots" and originated a phrase which has become part of the English language...
"Are you ready, Hezzie?" They were finally signed to the WLS Barn Dance and went to Hollywood at the invitation of Gene
Autry. They made at least 20 motion pictures. Spike Jones wanted to join them but at the time they were ready to retire
and they allowed Spike to use many of their funny gimmicks and ideas. Hezzie died in 1987, Ken in 1987 and Gabe in 1992.
- Visit this web site...http://www.hoosierhotshots.com
- Click here for images of Gabe Ward (2).
- Michael Warren
- b. South Bend, IN 3/5/46
- An Indiana basketball star,
he went to California to
play for UCLA. He was not recruited but
managed to make the team. He played for Hoosier
Johnny Wooden and became an all-american,
playing on a national championship
team. One of his team-mates was Lew Alcindor,
later Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. He was inducted
into the Indiana Basketball Hall
of Fame in 1992. He landed the role of Bobby Hill
on Hill Street Blues and was
listed as one of twelve "Promising
New Actors of 1976" by Screen World. After a
variety of roles in features and TV, he
was cast by Steven Bochco as Ron Harris
in the TV series, City of Angels, which
for awhile also featured Vivica Fox of
Hoosier Actors Page 1 |
Hoosier Actors Page 2 |
Hoosier Actors Page 3
Hoosier Actors Page 4 |
Hoosier Actors Page 5
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by David L. Smith
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