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Lee Tracy

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. William Lee Tracy (April 14, 1898 – October 18, 1968) was an American actor. He was nominated for an Oscar and a Golden Globe for his supporting role in the 1964 film The Best Man. In 1929, Tracy arrived in Hollywood, where he played the role of newspapermen in several films. He, for example, played a Walter Winchell-type gossip columnist in Blessed Event (1932). Tracy also starred as the columnist in Advice to the Lovelorn (1933), very loosely based on the novel Miss Lonelyhearts by Nathanael West; and he played a conscience-stricken editor in the 1943 drama The Power of the Press, based on a story by former newspaperman Samuel Fuller. Tracy played "The Buzzard," the criminal who leads Liliom (Charles Farrell) into a fatal robbery, in the film version of Liliom (1930). He also played Lupe Vélez's frenetic manager in Gregory LaCava's The Half-Naked Truth (1932) and portrayed John Barrymore's agent in Dinner at Eight (1933), directed by George Cukor. Lee Tracy's flourishing film career was temporarily disrupted on 19 November 1933, while he was on location in Mexico filming the Wallace Beery vehicle Viva Villa! According to the actor and producer Desi Arnaz, in his published autobiography The Book (1976), Tracy stood on a balcony in Mexico City and urinated down onto a passing military parade. Elsewhere in his autobiography, Arnaz claims that from then on, if one watched other crowds of spectators, they would visibly disperse any time an American stepped out onto a balcony. However, other crew members there at the time disputed this story, giving a sharply different account of events. In his autobiography, Charles G. Clarke, the cinematographer on the picture, said that he was standing outside the hotel during the parade and the incident never happened. Tracy, he said, was standing on the balcony observing the parade when a Mexican in the street below made an obscene gesture at him. Tracy replied in kind; and the next day a local newspaper printed a story that, in effect, Tracy had insulted Mexico, Mexicans in general, and their national flag in particular. The story caused an uproar in Mexico, and MGM decided to sacrifice Tracy in order to be allowed to continue filming there. The young actor Stuart Erwin replaced Tracy. The film's original director, Howard Hawks, was also fired for his refusal to testify against Tracy. Jack Conway replaced him. During World War II, Tracy returned to military service. Later, he had two television series in the 1950s. One was Martin Kane: Private Eye, in which he was one of four actors to play the title role. The others were William Gargan, Lloyd Nolan, and Mark Stevens. In 1958, he returned to a newspaper reporter role in the syndicated New York Confidential. After World War II, his screen career was largely relegated to television, but he portrayed the former President of the United States, Art Hockstader, a character loosely based on Harry Truman, in both the stage and film versions of The Best Man (1964), written by Gore Vidal. The movie version featured Henry Fonda and Cliff Robertson. Tracy received his only Academy Award nomination, as Best Supporting Actor, for his performance in the film. Description above from the Wikipedia article Lee Tracy, licensed under CC-BY-SA, full list of contributors on Wikipedia

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Apr 14, 1898 In Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Movie/TV Credits:
First Appeared:
In the movie Salute 1929-09-01
Latest Project:
Series Profiles in Courage 1964-11-08
Known For
Poster of New York Confidential
Poster of Tony Awards
Poster of Lights Out
Poster of The Night Mayor
Series Profiles in Courage Unknown 1964-11-08
Movie The Best Man President Art Hockstader 1964-04-05
Movie The Big Parade of Comedy (archive footage) 1964-09-02
Series Going My Way Unknown 1962-10-03
Series 87th Precinct Unknown 1961-09-25
Series Ben Casey Unknown 1961-10-02
Series New York Confidential Lee Cochran 1959-01-01
Series Tony Awards Presenter 1956-04-01
Series Lights Out Unknown 1949-07-19
Series Martin Kane, Private Eye Unknown 1949-09-01
Movie High Tide Hugh Fresney 1947-09-13
Movie Betrayal from the East Eddie Carter 1945-04-24
Movie I'll Tell the World Gabriel Patton 1945-06-08
Movie Power of the Press Griff Thompson 1943-01-29
Movie The Payoff Brad McKay 1942-11-24
Movie Millionaires in Prison Nick Burton 1940-07-12
Movie Fixer Dugan Charlie "Fixer" Dugan 1939-04-21
Movie The Spellbinder Jed Marlowe 1939-07-28
Movie Crashing Hollywood Michael Winslow 1938-01-07
Movie Cinema Circus Himself - Ringmaster 1937-01-27
Movie Behind The Headlines Eddie Haines 1937-05-14
Movie Criminal Lawyer Brandon 1937-01-29
Movie Sutter's Gold Pete Perkin 1936-03-01
Movie Wanted: Jane Turner Tom Mallory 1936-12-04
Movie Carnival Chick Thompson 1935-02-15
Movie Two-Fisted Hap Hurley 1935-10-03
Movie Pirate Party on Catalina Isle Pirate (uncredited) 1935-11-20
Movie I'll Tell the World Stanley Brown 1934-04-20
Movie The Lemon Drop Kid Wally Brooks aka The Lemon Drop Kid 1934-09-27
Movie You Belong to Me Bud Hannigan 1934-09-08
Movie The Nuisance Joseph Phineas 'Joe' Stevens 1933-06-03
Movie Clear All Wires! Buckley Joyce Thomas 1933-02-24
Movie Turn Back the Clock Joe Gimlet 1933-08-25
Movie Private Jones Unknown 1933-03-25
Movie Bombshell Space Hanlon 1933-10-13
Movie Dinner at Eight Max Kane 1933-12-22
Movie Advice to the Lovelorn Toby Prentiss 1933-12-01
Movie Doctor X Lee Taylor 1932-08-03
Movie The Strange Love of Molly Louvain Scott 'Scotty' Cornell 1932-05-28
Movie Love Is a Racket Stanley Fiske 1932-06-18
Movie The Night Mayor Mayor Bobby Kingston 1932-08-18
Movie Blessed Event Alvin Roberts 1932-09-10
Movie The Half Naked Truth Bates 1932-12-16
Movie Washington Merry-Go-Round Button Gwinett Brown 1932-10-15
Movie Born Reckless Bill O'Brien 1930-06-06
Movie Liliom The Buzzard 1930-10-05
Movie Salute Radio Announcer (uncredited) 1929-09-01
Movie Big Time Eddie Burns 1929-09-07