Norman Lloyd

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Norman Lloyd
Norman Lloyd 2007.jpg
Norman Lloyd, 2007
Born Norman Nathan Lloyd
(1914-11-08) November 8, 1914 (age 100)
Jersey City, New Jersey, U.S.
Years active 1932–present
Spouse(s) Peggy Craven (1936–2011; her death)

Norman Nathan Lloyd (born November 8, 1914) is an American actor, producer, and director with a career in entertainment spanning roughly eight decades. Lloyd has appeared in over sixty films and television shows. His prominent film roles include Fry in Saboteur, Bodalink in Limelight, Mr. Nolan in Dead Poets Society and Mr. Letterblair in The Age of Innocence. In the 1980s, he gained a new generation of fans for playing Dr. Daniel Auschlander, one of the starring roles on the groundbreaking medical drama St. Elsewhere.[1]

Early life and theatre work[edit]

Norman Lloyd was born on November 8, 1914 in Jersey City, New Jersey. His family was Jewish.[2] He attended high school and college in New York City. He started his career as a song and dance child performer during the 1920s.[3] He began his acting career in theater first at Eva Le Gallienne's Civic Repertory Theatre in New York, then joining the original company of the Orson WellesJohn Houseman Mercury Theatre. Lloyd had a significant role with the first Mercury Theatre production as Cinna the poet, in Shakespeare's Julius Caesar (1937). The 1938 Broadway role in Everywhere I Roam, as Johnny Appleseed, was selected as one of the ten best Broadway performances of the year. Lloyd was also a featured radio actor, including as part of Orson Welles' Mercury Theater and later in Norman Corwin's The Undecided Molecule. Lloyd met his wife, actress Peggy Craven, while they were co-starring in Elia Kazan's play Crime.[4]

Film acting[edit]

Lloyd came to Hollywood to play a Nazi spy in Alfred Hitchcock's Saboteur (1942), starting a long friendship and professional association with Hitchcock. After a few more villainous film roles, Lloyd also worked behind the camera as an assistant on Lewis Milestone's Arch of Triumph (1948). A friend of John Garfield, Lloyd appeared with him in He Ran All the Way, Garfield's last film before the Hollywood blacklist ended his film career.

Post-war career[edit]

Lloyd in Buccaneer's Girl trailer, 1950

A marginal victim of the blacklist, Lloyd was rescued professionally by Hitchcock, who had previously used the actor in Saboteur and Spellbound (1945). Hitchcock hired Lloyd as an associate producer and a director on his television series Alfred Hitchcock Presents in 1958. Previously, Lloyd was the director of the syndicated television series The Adventures of Kit Carson starring Bill Williams. Lloyd also directed the sponsored film A Word to the Wives (1955) with Marsha Hunt and Darren McGavin. He continued directing and producing episodic television throughout the 1960s and 1970s. He took an unusual role in the Night Gallery episode "A Feast of Blood" as the bearer of a cursed brooch, which he inflicts upon a hapless woman, played by Sondra Locke, who had spurned his romantic advances.

In the 1980s Lloyd played Dr. Auschlander in the television drama St. Elsewhere over its six-season run (1982–1988). Originally scheduled for only four episodes, Lloyd became a regular for the remainder of the series.[5] In addition to Ed Flanders and William Daniels, St. Elsewhere included a roster of relative unknowns, including Ed Begley, Jr., Denzel Washington, Stephen Furst, Eric Laneuville, David Morse and Howie Mandel. Mandel, who played rowdy and unorthodox ER resident Dr. Wayne Fiscus, recalled that "He was very inspirational between scenes, always cheering up everybody, and always smiles when Norman Lloyd passed through!"[6]

In 1989 he made his first film role in nearly a decade, playing Mr. Nolan, the authoritative headmaster of Welton Academy in Dead Poets Society. Initially, Lloyd was hesitant when asked to audition, because he thought the director and producers could judge whether or not he was right for the part by watching his acting on St. Elsewhere. Director Peter Weir was living in Australia and had not seen St. Elsewhere. Lloyd agreed to audition for him after winning his daily tennis match. From 1998-2001 he played Dr. Isaac Mentnor in the UPN science fiction drama Seven Days. His numerous television guest-star appearances include The Joseph Cotten Show, Murder, She Wrote, The Twilight Zone, Wiseguy, Star Trek: The Next Generation, Wings, The Practice and Civil Wars.

He has played in various radio plays for Peggy Webber's California Artists Radio Theater and Yuri Rasovsky's Hollywood Theater of the Ear. His most recent film role was in In Her Shoes (2005). He is the subject of the documentary Who Is Norman Lloyd?, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival on September 1, 2007. In 2010 he guest starred in an episode of ABC's Modern Family.[7] On December 5, 2010 he starred in a one-man show at the Colony Theatre, in Burbank, California, where he spoke of his career and answered questions from the audience, detailing his illustrious and singular path.

Personal life[edit]

His wife of 75 years, Peggy, died on August 30, 2011, at the age of 98; the couple had two children, one of whom is the actress Josie Lloyd.[4] Lloyd's hobby is tennis, which he has practiced since the age of 8. He quipped in an interview "with the application and time I have devoted to it, I should have been a reigning World Champion".[3] He played against Charlie Chaplin, Joseph Cotten and Spencer Tracy.

As of 2014, Lloyd still plays twice a week.[8] He turned 100 in November 2014.[9] Longtime friends and acting proteges, Howie Mandel and Ed Begley Jr. reflected on his Centenarian birthday: Mandel said, "I love Norman Lloyd. He is a legend. I have spent hours like a little kid while he regaled us with stories of Hitchcock. He teaches, he entertains. He is a legend!"; and Begley Jr. said, "I worked with Norman Lloyd the actor and Norman Lloyd the director, and no one informed me better on the art of storytelling than that talented man. He is a constant inspiration, and my eternal friend."[10]

Filmography[edit]

Cinema[edit]

Year Film Role Notes
1942 Saboteur Frank Fry
1945 The Southerner Finlay
The Unseen Jasper Goodwin
Spellbound Mr. Garmes
A Walk in the Sun Pvt. Archimbeau
1946 A Letter for Evie DeWitt Pynchon
Young Widow Sammy Jackson
The Green Years Adam Leckie
1947 The Beginning or the End Dr. Troyanski
1948 No Minor Vices Dr. Sturdivant
Arch of Triumph Production assistant
1949 The Red Pony Assistant to the Producer
Scene of the Crime Sleeper
Reign of Terror Jean-Lambert Tallien
1950 Buccaneer's Girl Patout
The Flame and the Arrow Apollo
1951 M Sutro
He Ran All the Way Al Molin
1952 The Light Touch Anton
Limelight Bodalink
1968 Companions in Nightmare Director and Producer
1977 Audrey Rose Dr. Steven Lipscomb
1978 FM Carl Billings
1980 The Nude Bomb Carruthers
1989 Amityville 4 Father Manfred TV film
Dead Poets Society Mr. Nolan
1993 The Age of Innocence Mr. Letterblair
2000 The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle Wossamotta U. President
2001 The Song of the Lark Madison Bowers TV film
2005 In Her Shoes The Professor
2015 Trainwreck Forthcoming

TV[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]