The Info List - Robert Ryan

Robert Bushnell Ryan (November 11, 1909 – July 11, 1973) was an American actor who most often portrayed hardened cops and ruthless villains.


1 Early life 2 Career 3 Politics 4 Personal life 5 Filmography 6 See also 7 References 8 Further reading 9 External links

Early life[edit] Ryan was born in Chicago, Illinois, the first child of Mable Arbutus (Bushnell), a secretary, and Timothy Aloysius Ryan, who was from a wealthy family that owned a real estate firm.[3]:p.4 He was of Irish (paternal grandparents from Thurles) and English descent. Ryan was raised Catholic[4] and educated at Loyola Academy.[5] He graduated from Dartmouth College
Dartmouth College
in 1932, having held the school's heavyweight boxing title all four years of his attendance. After graduation, the 6′4" Ryan found employment as a stoker on a ship, a WPA worker, and a ranch hand in Montana. Career[edit] Ryan attempted to make a career in show business as a playwright, but was forced to start acting in order to support himself. He studied acting in Hollywood
and appeared on stage and in small film parts during the early 1940s, beginning with The Ghost Breakers
The Ghost Breakers
and Queen of the Mob, both for Paramount Pictures
Paramount Pictures
in 1940. In January 1944, after securing a contract guarantee from RKO Radio Pictures, Ryan enlisted in the United States Marine Corps
United States Marine Corps
and served as a drill instructor at Camp Pendleton, located between Oceanside and San Clemente in Southern California. At Camp Pendleton, he befriended writer and future director Richard Brooks, whose novel, The Brick Foxhole, he greatly admired. He also took up painting.

The Naked Spur
The Naked Spur

Ryan's breakthrough film role was as an anti-Semitic killer in Crossfire (1947), a film noir based on Brooks's novel. The role won Ryan his sole career Oscar nomination, for Best Supporting Actor. From then on, Ryan's specialty was tough/tender roles, finding particular expression in the films of directors such as Nicholas Ray, Jean Renoir (The Woman on the Beach), Robert Wise
Robert Wise
and Samuel Fuller. In Ray's On Dangerous Ground (1951) he portrayed a burnt-out city cop finding redemption while solving a rural murder. In Wise's The Set-Up (1949), he played an over-the-hill boxer who is brutally punished for refusing to take a dive. Other important films were Anthony Mann's western The Naked Spur, Samuel Fuller's uproarious Japanese-set gangland thriller House of Bamboo, Bad Day at Black Rock, and the socially conscious heist movie Odds Against Tomorrow. He played John the Baptist
John the Baptist
in MGM's Technicolor epic King of Kings (1961) and the villainous Claggart in Peter Ustinov's adaptation of Billy Budd (1962). He also appeared in several all-star war films, including The Longest Day (1962), Battle of the Bulge (1965), and The Dirty Dozen
The Dirty Dozen
(1967). In his later years, Ryan continued playing significant roles in major films. Among the most notable were The Dirty Dozen, The Professionals (1966) and Sam Peckinpah's highly influential brutal western The Wild Bunch. He portrayed Larry Slade in the American Film Theatre's 1973 film of Eugene O'Neill's The Iceman Cometh, Ryan, who died before the film's premiere, won the Kansas City Film Critics Circle Award for Best Supporting Actor,[6] the National Board of Review Award for Best Actor (in a tie with Al Pacino, for Serpico),[7] and a special award from the National Society of Film Critics.[8] The Iceman Cometh and Executive Action both were released in November 1973, after Ryan's death. Less than two years before, Ryan had tackled O'Neill's next, and penultimate, play onstage, portraying James Tyrone in Arvin Brown's critically acclaimed Off-Broadway production of Long Day's Journey Into Night.[9] Ryan's relatively infrequent stage appearances also include three on Broadway, including a supporting role in the 1941 premiere of Clash by Night
Clash by Night
(whose 1952 film adaptation would again feature Ryan, this time starring opposite Barbara Stanwyck
Barbara Stanwyck
and Paul Douglas), and, two decades later, starring roles in Mr. President and a 1969 revival of The Front Page, the oft-filmed comedy drama about newspapermen. The latter production was one of the first developed by the Plumstead Playhouse (later the Plumstead Theatre Company), a Long Island-based repertory company founded by Ryan, Martha Scott
Martha Scott
and Henry Fonda;[10] the following winter, a film of the production (produced jointly by MPC and Plumstead) would be broadcast nationally over the upstart Hughes TV Network.[11][12] Another highlight among Ryan's regional theater credits came in the summer of 1960, when he starred opposite Katharine Hepburn
Katharine Hepburn
at the American Shakespeare Theatre
American Shakespeare Theatre
in Stratford, Connecticut, playing Antony to Hepburn's Cleopatra. Ryan also played the title characters in Shakespeare's Coriolanus
(1954, Off-Broadway) and Othello
(1967, in Nottingham, England).[13] Ryan made his debut in television in 1955 as Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln
in the Screen Director's Playhouse
Screen Director's Playhouse
adaptation of Christopher Morley's story "Lincoln's Doctor's Dog." As he explained to reporters, despite financial considerations, Ryan preferred to steer clear of any commitment to a TV series:

The only money in TV is in the series, and I want to stay out of those. Sure, I might make a million or so in a series, but I'd wind up being 'Sidewinder Sam' for the rest of my life.[14]

With Barbara Stanwyck
Barbara Stanwyck
in Clash by Night
Clash by Night

Ryan would remain true to these convictions, appearing in many television series, but always as a guest star. Notable appearances include his portrayal of Franklin Hoppy-Hopp in the 1964 episode "Who Chopped Down the Cherry Tree?" on the NBC
medical drama about psychiatry, The Eleventh Hour. Similarly, he guest-starred as Lloyd Osment in the 1964 episode "Better Than a Dead Lion" in the ABC psychiatric series, Breaking Point. In 1964, Ryan appeared with Warren Oates in the episode "No Comment" of CBS's short-lived drama about newspapers, The Reporter, starring Harry Guardino
Harry Guardino
in the title role of journalist Danny Taylor. Ryan appeared three times (1962–1964) on the western Wagon Train, four times (1956–1959) on CBS's Dick Powell's Zane Grey Theater and twice (1959 and 1961) on the Zane Grey spin-off Frontier Justice. Among Ryan's many appearances on the dramatic anthology series of TV's golden age, perhaps most notable are his starring roles in Playhouse 90's production of The Great Gatsby, opposite Jeanne Crain, and in the Buick-Electra Playhouse adaptation of Ernest Hemingway's The Snows of Kilimanjaro, written by A. E. Hotchner, directed by John Frankenheimer, and co-starring Ann Todd, Mary Astor, and Janice Rule. Perhaps Ryan's only partial concession to doing an entire television series was his role as Narrator in CBS's 26-episode acclaimed documentary homage to World War One, released in prime time during the 1964-65 season. Although Ryan never appeared in any production of Gene Roddenberry's Star Trek, he was originally considered for the role of Commodore Matt Decker in the 1967 episode "The Doomsday Machine". Episode author Norman Spinrad
Norman Spinrad
reportedly had written the script with Ryan in mind to play Commodore Decker, but Ryan was unavailable, owing to prior commitments. That role subsequently went to William Windom. Politics[edit] Despite his military service, he also came to share the pacifist views of his wife Jessica, who was a Quaker. In the late 1940s, as the House Committee on Un-American Activities (HUAC) intensified its anti- Communist
attacks on Hollywood, he joined the short-lived Committee for the First Amendment. Throughout the 1950s, he donated money and services to civic and religious organizations such as the American Civil Liberties Union, American Friends Service Committee, and United World Federalists. In September 1959, he and Steve Allen
Steve Allen
became founding co-chairs of The Committee for a SANE Nuclear Policy's Hollywood
chapter.[15] By the mid-1960s, Ryan's political activities included efforts to fight racial discrimination. He served in the cultural division of the Committee to Defend Martin Luther King
Martin Luther King
and, with Bill Cosby, Robert Culp, Sidney Poitier, and other actors, helped organize the short-lived Artists Help All Blacks.[3]:p.132 Ryan's film work, playing cynical, prejudiced, violent characters, often ran counter to the political causes he embraced. He was a pacifist who starred in war movies, westerns, and violent thrillers. He was an opponent of McCarthyism
who appeared in the anti-communist propaganda film I Married a Communist, playing a nefarious communist agent. In socially progressive films such as Crossfire, Bad Day at Black Rock, Odds Against Tomorrow
Odds Against Tomorrow
and Executive Action, he played bigoted villains or conspirators. Ryan was often vocal about this dichotomy. At a screening of Odds Against Tomorrow, he appeared before the press to discuss "the problems of an actor like me playing the kind of character that in real life he finds totally despicable."[16] Personal life[edit] On March 11, 1939, he married Jessica Cadwalader. They had two sons—Cheyney, a research fellow at Oxford University and a Professor of Philosophy and Law at the University of Oregon, his oldest son, Walker T, a bluesman—and one daughter, Lisa. They lived in the Manhattan
co-op The Dakota
The Dakota
at 72nd and Central Park West
Central Park West
and eventually sublet the apartment to John Lennon
John Lennon
and Yoko Ono,[citation needed] according to The Lives of Robert Ryan, a biography of the actor by J.R. Jones published in 2015 (Wesleyan Film, May 2015). In the fall of 1951, a progressive school by the name of Oakwood was opened in Jessica and Robert Ryan's backyard, founded by a small group of parents who decided to create a school based on their views of education and child-rearing. Three years later, those parents, including the Ryans, Sidney Harmon and Elizabeth Schappert, Wendy and Ross Cabeen, and Charles and Emilie Haas, bought and built the elementary school campus on Moorpark Street in Los Angeles' San Fernando Valley. Robert and Jessica remained married until her death from cancer in 1972. He died from lung cancer in New York City
New York City
the following year at age 63. Filmography[edit]

1940: The Ghost Breakers
The Ghost Breakers
(with Bob Hope
Bob Hope
and Paulette Goddard) as Intern (uncredited) 1940: Queen of the Mob as Jim 1940: Golden Gloves as Pete Wells 1940: North West Mounted Police (with Gary Cooper) as Constable Dumont 1940: The Texas Rangers Ride Again
The Texas Rangers Ride Again
(last film for Paramount) as Eddie (uncredited) 1943: Bombardier (first film for RKO, with Randolph Scott) as Joe Connors 1943: The Sky's the Limit (with Fred Astaire) as Reginald Fenton 1943: Behind the Rising Sun as Lefty O'Doyle 1943: The Iron Major as Father Timothy 'Tim' Donovan 1943: Gangway for Tomorrow
Gangway for Tomorrow
as Joe Dunham 1943: Tender Comrade
Tender Comrade
as Chris Jones 1944: Marine Raiders as Capt. Dan Craig 1947: Trail Street
Trail Street
as Allen 1947: The Woman on the Beach
The Woman on the Beach
(directed by Jean Renoir) as Scott 1947: Crossfire (with Robert Mitchum
Robert Mitchum
and Robert Young) as Montgomery 1948: Berlin Express
Berlin Express
as Robert Lindley 1948: Return of the Bad Men as Sundance Kid 1948: The Boy with Green Hair
The Boy with Green Hair
as Dr. Evans 1948: Act of Violence
Act of Violence
as Joe Parkson 1949: Caught (with James Mason) as Smith Ohlrig 1949: The Set-Up as Stoker 1949: I Married a Communist
as Brad Collins 1950: The Secret Fury
The Secret Fury
(with Claudette Colbert) as David McLean 1950: Born to Be Bad (with Joan Fontaine) as Nick 1951: Hard, Fast and Beautiful
Hard, Fast and Beautiful
as Seabright Tennis Match Spectador (uncredited) 1951: Best of the Badmen as Jeff Clanton 1951: Flying Leathernecks
Flying Leathernecks
(with John Wayne) as Capt. Carl 'Griff' Griffin 1951: The Racket (with Robert Mitchum
Robert Mitchum
and Lizabeth Scott) as Nick Scanlon 1951: On Dangerous Ground
On Dangerous Ground
(with Ida Lupino) as Jim Wilson 1952: Clash by Night
Clash by Night
as Earl Pfeiffer 1952: Beware, My Lovely
Beware, My Lovely
as Howard Wilton 1952: Horizons West
Horizons West
as Dan Hammond 1953: The Naked Spur
The Naked Spur
(with James Stewart) as Ben Vandergroat 1953: City Beneath the Sea as Brad Carlton 1953: Inferno as Donald Whitley Carson III 1954: Alaska Seas as Matt Kelly 1954: About Mrs. Leslie
About Mrs. Leslie
(with Shirley Booth) as George Leslie

1954: Her Twelve Men
Her Twelve Men
as Joe Hargrave 1955: Bad Day at Black Rock
Bad Day at Black Rock
(with Spencer Tracy
Spencer Tracy
and Lee Marvin) as Reno Smith 1955: House of Bamboo
House of Bamboo
as Jim Brecam 1955: Escape to Burma as Sandy Dawson 1955: The Tall Men (with Clark Gable
Clark Gable
and Jane Russell) as Nathan Stark 1956: The Proud Ones as Marshal Cass Silver 1956: Back from Eternity
Back from Eternity
(with Anita Ekberg
Anita Ekberg
and Rod Steiger) as Bill Lonagan 1957: Men in War
Men in War
(with Aldo Ray) as Lt. Benson 1958: Lonelyhearts
(with Montgomery Clift) as William Shrike 1958: God's Little Acre as Ty Ty Walden 1959: Day of the Outlaw
Day of the Outlaw
as Blaise Starrett 1959: Odds Against Tomorrow
Odds Against Tomorrow
as Earle Slater 1960: Ice Palace (with Richard Burton) as Thor Storm 1961: The Canadians as Inspector William Gannon 1961: King of Kings as John the Baptist 1962: The Longest Day (with John Wayne) as Brig. Gen. James M. Gavin 1962: Billy Budd (with Peter Ustinov) as John Claggart - Master at Arms 1964: World War One (1964–1965, TV series) Narrator 1965: The Crooked Road as Richard Ashley 1965: The Dirty Game
The Dirty Game
as General Bruce 1965: Battle of the Bulge (with Henry Fonda) as Gen. Grey 1966: The Professionals (with Burt Lancaster
Burt Lancaster
and Lee Marvin) as Ehrengard 1967: The Busy Body
The Busy Body
as Charley Barker 1967: The Dirty Dozen
The Dirty Dozen
(with Lee Marvin) as Col. Everett Dasher Breed 1967: Hour of the Gun
Hour of the Gun
(with James Garner
James Garner
and Jason Robards, Jr.) as Ike Clanton 1967: Custer of the West
Custer of the West
as Sgt. Patrick Mulligan 1968: A Minute to Pray, a Second to Die as New Mexico Gov. Lem Carter 1968: Anzio (with Robert Mitchum
Robert Mitchum
and Peter Falk) as General Carson 1969: The Wild Bunch
The Wild Bunch
(with William Holden
William Holden
and Ernest Borgnine) as Deke Thornton 1969: Captain Nemo and the Underwater City
Captain Nemo and the Underwater City
as Captain Nemo 1971: Lawman (with Burt Lancaster) as Sabbath Marshal Cotton Ryan Cotten 1971: The Love Machine as Gregory 'Greg' Austin 1972: ...and Hope to Die (fr) as Charley Ellis 1973: Lolly-Madonna XXX
Lolly-Madonna XXX
as Pap Gutshall 1973: The Outfit as Mailer 1973: Executive Action (with Burt Lancaster) as Robert Foster 1973: The Iceman Cometh (with Lee Marvin) as Larry Slade (final film role)

See also[edit]

Biography portal World War II portal

Film noir Western


^ http://www.people.com/people/archive/article/0,,20116129,00.html ^ https://books.google.com/books?id=wF9cCAAAQBAJ&pg=PA281&lpg=PA281&dq=Robert+Ryan+actor+children&source=bl&ots=1ONULfktf3&sig=kbT4YfsQHsLbt-pFBw5ubzeuMO4&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjogJGB2eDKAhWGOj4KHfQNBygQ6AEIlwEwEQ#v=snippet&q=Lisa&f=false ^ a b Jarlett, Franklin (1997). Robert Ryan: A Biography and Critical Filmography. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland Classics.  ^ http://www.chicagoreader.com/chicago/film-noir-icon-robert-ryan-his-chicago-childhood-the-ryan-construction-fire/Content?oid=1223003 ^ Jones, J.R. The Lives of Robert Ryan
Robert Ryan
Wesleyan University Press, 11 May 2015 ^ KCFCC Award Winners 1970-1979. Kansas City Film Critics Circle. Retrieved 2013-03-15. ^ Wedman, Les. "And Now... The Oscar for Gore at the Box Office". The Vancouver Sun. January 10, 1974. Retrieved 2013-03-15. ^ Sarris, Andrew. "Films in Focus: A Tale of Two Circles". The Village Voice. February 14, 1974. Retrieved 2013-03-15. ^ "Off Broadway". The New Yorker. Volume 47, Issue 3. Retrieved 2013-03-15. See also:

"Long Day's Journey Into Night". Cue. April 1971. Retrieved 2013-03-15.

^ "Repertory Formed By Noted Actors". The St. Petersburg Times. August 3, 1968. Retrieved 2013-03-16. ^ "TV Drama Boasts Top Cast". The Calgary Herald. January 23, 1970. Retrieved 2013-03-16. ^ Du Brow, Rick. "Xerox Presents 'The Front Page'". The Sarasota Journal. January 12, 1970. Retrieved 2013-03-16. ^ UPI-AP. " Robert Ryan
Robert Ryan
Dead At 59" [sic]. The Montreal Gazette. July 12, 1973. Retrieved 2013-03-16. ^ "Notes From Hollywood". The Ottawa Citizen. December 3, 1955. Retrieved 2013-03-15. ^ " Robert Ryan
Robert Ryan
Biography". New York Times. 2010.  ^ Philip K. Scheuer, Los Angeles Times, 1 October 1959, B13.

Further reading[edit]

Othman, Frederick C. " Hollywood
Reporter". The Middlesboro Daily News. August 23, 1943. UP. " Robert Ryan
Robert Ryan
Isn't Sure He Can Afford Stardom". The Milwaukee Journal. November 19, 1947. AP. "Robert Ryan: A Friend of the Underdog". The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. September 14, 1948. "Robert Ryan's Advice To Would-Be Actors". The Deseret News. November 30, 1951. Finnigan, Joseph. "Actor Robert Ryan
Robert Ryan
Set To Find His Relatives". The Palm Beach Post. July 4, 1961. Pack, Harvey. "Bob Ryan Shines On TV and Stage". The Toledo Blade. June 23, 1969. Otterburn-Hall, William. " Robert Ryan
Robert Ryan
Recalls First Trip To Durango". The Saskatoon Star-Phoenix. June 6, 1970. Thomas, Bob. " Robert Ryan
Robert Ryan
Fights Back After Tragic Two Years". The Milwaukee Journal. August 25, 1972. Jones, J.R. "The Actor's Letter: A Reminiscence by Film Noir Icon Robert Ryan". The Chicago
Reader. October 29, 2009. Dargis, Manohla. "Robert Ryan’s Quiet Furies". The New York Times. August 5, 2011.

External links[edit]

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In Praise of Robert Ryan
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on IMDb Robert Ryan
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Internet Broadway Database
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Wayback Machine
(archived October 27, 2009) The Robert Ryan
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at Find a Grave Photographs and literature on Robert Ryan

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National Board of Review Award for Best Actor

Ray Milland
Ray Milland
(1945) Laurence Olivier
Laurence Olivier
(1946) Michael Redgrave
Michael Redgrave
(1947) Walter Huston
Walter Huston
(1948) Ralph Richardson
Ralph Richardson
(1949) Alec Guinness
Alec Guinness
(1950) Richard Basehart
Richard Basehart
(1951) Ralph Richardson
Ralph Richardson
(1952) James Mason
James Mason
(1953) Bing Crosby
Bing Crosby
(1954) Ernest Borgnine
Ernest Borgnine
(1955) Yul Brynner
Yul Brynner
(1956) Alec Guinness
Alec Guinness
(1957) Spencer Tracy
Spencer Tracy
(1958) Victor Sjöström
Victor Sjöström
(1959) Robert Mitchum
Robert Mitchum
(1960) Albert Finney
Albert Finney
(1961) Jason Robards
Jason Robards
(1962) Rex Harrison
Rex Harrison
(1963) Anthony Quinn
Anthony Quinn
(1964) Lee Marvin
Lee Marvin
(1965) Paul Scofield
Paul Scofield
(1966) Peter Finch
Peter Finch
(1967) Cliff Robertson
Cliff Robertson
(1968) Peter O'Toole
Peter O'Toole
(1969) George C. Scott
George C. Scott
(1970) Gene Hackman
Gene Hackman
(1971) Peter O'Toole
Peter O'Toole
(1972) Al Pacino
Al Pacino
/ Robert Ryan
Robert Ryan
(1973) Gene Hackman
Gene Hackman
(1974) Jack Nicholson
Jack Nicholson
(1975) David Carradine
David Carradine
(1976) John Travolta
John Travolta
(1977) Jon Voight
Jon Voight
/ Laurence Olivier
Laurence Olivier
(1978) Peter Sellers
Peter Sellers
(1979) Robert De Niro
Robert De Niro
(1980) Henry Fonda
Henry Fonda
(1981) Ben Kingsley
Ben Kingsley
(1982) Tom Conti
Tom Conti
(1983) Victor Banerjee
Victor Banerjee
(1984) William Hurt
William Hurt
/ Raúl Juliá
Raúl Juliá
(1985) Paul Newman
Paul Newman
(1986) Michael Douglas
Michael Douglas
(1987) Gene Hackman
Gene Hackman
(1988) Morgan Freeman
Morgan Freeman
(1989) Robert De Niro
Robert De Niro
/ Robin Williams
Robin Williams
(1990) Warren Beatty
Warren Beatty
(1991) Jack Lemmon
Jack Lemmon
(1992) Anthony Hopkins
Anthony Hopkins
(1993) Tom Hanks
Tom Hanks
(1994) Nicolas Cage
Nicolas Cage
(1995) Tom Cruise
Tom Cruise
(1996) Jack Nicholson
Jack Nicholson
(1997) Ian McKellen
Ian McKellen
(1998) Russell Crowe
Russell Crowe
(1999) Javier Bardem
Javier Bardem
(2000) Billy Bob Thornton
Billy Bob Thornton
(2001) Campbell Scott
Campbell Scott
(2002) Sean Penn
Sean Penn
(2003) Jamie Foxx
Jamie Foxx
(2004) Philip Seymour Hoffman
Philip Seymour Hoffman
(2005) Forest Whitaker
Forest Whitaker
(2006) George Clooney
George Clooney
(2007) Clint Eastwood
Clint Eastwood
(2008) George Clooney
George Clooney
/ Morgan Freeman
Morgan Freeman
(2009) Jesse Eisenberg
Jesse Eisenberg
(2010) George Clooney
George Clooney
(2011) Bradley Cooper
Bradley Cooper
(2012) Bruce Dern
Bruce Dern
(2013) Michael Keaton
Michael Keaton
/ Oscar Isaac
Oscar Isaac
(2014) Matt Damon
Matt Damon
(2015) Casey Affleck
Casey Affleck
(2016) Tom Hanks
Tom Hanks

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WorldCat Identities VIAF: 100393094 LCCN: n85199132 ISNI: 0000 0001 2145 398X GND: 118952110 SUDOC: 05051864X BNF: cb13534051x (data) BNE: XX1068461 SN