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|Born||Sydney Woodrow Parfrey
October 5, 1922
New York City USA
|Died||July 29, 1984
Los Angeles, California, USA
|Children||Adam Parfrey, Jonathan Parfrey|
Parfrey was born Sydney Woodrow Parfrey on October 5, 1922, in New York City. He was orphaned as a teenager. He fought at the Battle of the Bulge during World War II and was wounded and captured by the Germans. He married Rosa Ellovich and trained under acting teacher Erwin Piscator at the New School for Social Research.
Parfrey acted almost entirely on Broadway or regional stage in the late 1940s and 50s, turning to TV and film substantially in the 60s. Though usually a supporting player, he played many focal TV guest-star roles, mainly in the late 60s when fantasy and spy shows relied heavily on distinctive guest players. He appeared five times on The Man From U.N.C.L.E., more than any other guest star except Jill Ireland (who also appeared five times). In 1967 he appeared as Brock in the 4th season of the sci-fi TV show "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea" in the episode named "Fatal Cargo". He is often remembered as "one of TV's great slimeball villains". He later appeared in the short-lived 1979 CBS series Time Express.
Parfrey also scored a few big A-movie parts, most notably as a prisoner in Papillon (1973). Parfrey's frequent association with that film's director, Franklin Schaffner, also included a bit as Maximus, one of the three "See No Evil" orangutan judges in Planet of the Apes (1968). He appeared in small parts in The Outlaw Josey Wales, Bronco Billy, Dirty Harry, and Charley Varrick.
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