James Gregory (actor)

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James Gregory
Gregory, James.jpg
Gregory in 1948
Born(1911-12-23)December 23, 1911
New York City, U.S.
DiedSeptember 16, 2002(2002-09-16) (aged 90)
Resting placeSedona Community Cemetery
Years active1939–1998
Ann Miltner
(m. 1944⁠–⁠2002)

James Gregory (December 23, 1911 – September 16, 2002) was an American character actor known for his deep, gravelly voice and playing brash roles such as Schaffer in Al Capone (1959), the McCarthy-like Sen. John Iselin in The Manchurian Candidate (1962), the audacious General Ursus in Beneath the Planet of the Apes (1970), and crusty Inspector Frank Luger in the television sitcom Barney Miller (1975–1982).


In 1939, he made his Broadway debut in a production of Key Largo[1] and worked in about 25 more Broadway productions over the next 16 years.[citation needed]

He served three years in the United States Navy and United States Marine Corps during World War II.[2] His early acting work included army training films; one such appearance is excerpted in The Atomic Café (1982). He also worked in radio, including a year (1955–1956) on 21st Precinct.

Gregory was the lead in The Lawless Years, a 1920s-era crime drama which aired 45 episodes on NBC. In the series, which ran from 1959 to 1961, he played NYPD Detective Barney Ruditsky.[3]: 588 

After his appearance as the McCarthyistic Senator Iselin in The Manchurian Candidate (1962), Gregory starred in the film PT 109 (1963) with Cliff Robertson. He played Dean Martin's spy boss MacDonald, in the Matt Helm film series; in the original Star Trek series in the episode "Dagger of the Mind" (1966), as Dr. Tristan Adams; and in the Elvis Presley film Clambake (1967). In the pilot movie for the 1968 Hawaii Five-O series, Gregory became the first actor to portray State Department official Jonathan Kaye, a recurring character on the series.

Gregory portrayed Nick Hannigan on Detective School.[3] He was a semiregular on the TV series Barney Miller as Deputy Inspector Frank Luger. His final acting credit was in a 1986 episode of Mr. Belvedere.


Gregory died of natural causes in Sedona, Arizona, in 2002, aged 90.[4] His wife, Anne Miltner, and he are interred together at the Sedona Community Cemetery.[5]

Selected TV and filmography[edit]


  1. ^ "James Gregory". Internet Broadway Database. The Broadway League. Archived from the original on November 5, 2020. Retrieved November 5, 2020.
  2. ^ Olive, Myrna (September 19, 2002). "James Gregory, 90; Veteran Player of Cops and Generals in Movies and Television". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on 2019-04-13.
  3. ^ a b Terrace, Vincent (2011). Encyclopedia of Television Shows, 1925 through 2010 (2nd ed.). Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers. p. 255. ISBN 978-0-7864-6477-7.
  4. ^ "James Gregory, Actor, 90, Dies". The New York Times. Associated Press. September 19, 2002.
  5. ^ see headstone photo and text at https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/6797096/james-gregory accessed 4/12/2023

External links[edit]