Image of John Kerr

John Kerr

John Grinham Kerr (November 15, 1931 – February 2, 2013), was an American actor and lawyer. He made his Broadway debut in 1953 in Mary Coyle Chase's Bernardine, a high-school comedy for which he won a Theatre World Award. In 1953-54, he received critical acclaim as a troubled prep school student in Robert Anderson's play Tea and Sympathy. In 1954, he won a Tony Award for his performance, and he starred in the film version in 1956. Kerr's first television acting role was in 1954 on NBC's Justice as a basketball player who believes that gamblers have ruined his success on the court. His mother appeared with him on the series, which focuses on the cases of attorneys with the Legal Aid Society of New York. He made The Cobweb for MGM, who liked his work so much they co-starred him with Leslie Caron in Gaby (1956), the third remake of Waterloo Bridge, which, in its original pre-Code 1931 version, featured John's grandfather, actor Frederick Kerr. Kerr starred with Deborah Kerr (no relation) in Tea and Sympathy in 1956. In a widely publicized decision in 1956, Kerr declined to play the role of Charles Lindbergh in The Spirit of St. Louis because he did not respect Lindbergh's early support of the Nazi regime in Germany prior to America's entry into World War II. "I don't admire the ideals of the hero", Mr. Kerr told The New York Post. The part went to James Stewart. Kerr had a major role in the film version of Rodgers and Hammerstein's South Pacific (1958), playing Lt. Joe Cable, the newly arrived marine about to be sent on a dangerous spy mission. In The Crowded Sky (1960), Kerr played a pilot who helps the Captain (Dana Andrews) steer a crippled airliner back to earth. Another film appearance was in Roger Corman's The Pit and the Pendulum (1961). In 1963, Kerr had a continuing role on Arrest and Trial, playing Assistant DA Barry Pine. During the 1960s, Kerr guest starred on several TV series including The Alfred Hitchcock Hour, Rawhide, Gunsmoke and Adam-12. He had a regular role on the ABC-TV primetime TV series, Peyton Place, playing District Attorney John Fowler during the 1965-66 season. Also in 1964-65 he appeared as guest star on several episodes of Twelve O'Clock High. In the 1970s, Kerr had a recurring role as prosecutor Gerald O'Brien on The Streets of San Francisco and he made guest appearances in several other TV programs including The Mod Squad, Columbo, McMillan and Wife, Barnaby Jones and The Feather and Father Gang. Kerr's last acting appearance was a minor role in The Park Is Mine (1986), a made-for-TV movie starring Tommy Lee Jones.

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Nov 15, 1931 In New York, New York, USA
Movie/TV Credits:
First Appeared:
In the series The Philco Television Playhouse 1948-10-03
Latest Project:
Movie Blood and Chocolate 2007-01-26
Known For
Poster of Columbo
Poster of The High Chaparral
Poster of The Virginian
Poster of Girl of the Night
Movie Blood and Chocolate Finn 2007-01-26
Series The Ray Bradbury Theater Unknown 1985-05-21
Movie Search and Destroy MacPherson 1979-07-05
Movie The Silent Partner Detective #3 1978-09-07
Series The New Avengers Unknown 1976-10-22
Series Switch Unknown 1975-09-09
Series Toma Unknown 1973-03-21
Movie Incident on a Dark Street Gallagher - Trenier's Lawyer 1973-01-13
Series Police Story Unknown 1973-03-20
Movie The Longest Night Agent Jones 1972-09-12
Series The Rookies Unknown 1972-09-11
Series Search Unknown 1972-09-13
Series The Streets of San Francisco Unknown 1972-09-23
Series Alias Smith and Jones Unknown 1971-01-05
Series Columbo Roger Dutton 1971-09-15
Movie Yuma Capt. White 1971-03-02
Series The Mod Squad Unknown 1968-09-24
Series The High Chaparral Unknown 1967-09-10
Series Run for Your Life Unknown 1965-09-13
Series The Long, Hot Summer Unknown 1965-09-16
Series The F.B.I. Unknown 1965-09-19
Series Profiles in Courage Unknown 1964-11-08
Series Arrest and Trial Assistant Deputy District Attorney Barry Pine 1963-09-15
Series The Alfred Hitchcock Hour Unknown 1962-09-20
Series The Virginian Unknown 1962-09-19
Movie The Pit and the Pendulum Francis Barnard 1961-08-12
Series Bus Stop Unknown 1961-10-01
Movie The Crowded Sky Mike Rule 1960-09-02
Movie Girl of the Night Larry Taylor 1960-11-11
Series Riverboat Unknown 1959-09-13
Series Rawhide Unknown 1959-01-09
Movie South Pacific Lt. Joseph Cable, USMC 1958-03-18
Movie The Vintage Ernesto Barandero 1957-05-08
Movie Gaby Gregory Y. Wendell 1956-05-09
Movie Tea and Sympathy Tom Robinson Lee 1956-09-27
Movie The Cobweb Steven W. Holte 1955-06-07
Movie The Quatermass Xperiment Photo Lab Technician (uncredited) 1955-08-26
Series Gunsmoke Unknown 1955-09-10
Series Climax! Unknown 1954-10-07
Series General Electric Theater Unknown 1953-02-01
Series The United States Steel Hour Unknown 1953-10-27
Series Hallmark Hall of Fame Unknown 1951-12-24
Series Lux Video Theatre Unknown 1950-10-02
Series Suspense Unknown 1949-01-06
Series The Philco Television Playhouse Unknown 1948-10-03
Series Studio One Unknown 1948-11-07