John Craven (actor)

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Frank Craven, Martha Scott and John Craven in the original Broadway production of Our Town (1938)

John Craven (June 22, 1916 – November 24, 1995) was an American actor in films and plays and on television.

Craven was born on June 22, 1916, in New York City. He was a third-generation actor, following in the profession of his father, Frank Craven, and his grandfather, John T. Craven.[1] His mother, Mary Blythe, was an actress prior to marriage.[2]

Craven originated the role of George Gibbs in the original stage version of Our Town, in which his father played the stage manager.[1] Craven was overlooked in the movie version, however, with the part going to the then-unknown William Holden. Other Broadway shows in which Craven appeared included They Knew What They Wanted (1949), Spring Again (1941), Village Green (1941), Delicate Story (1940), Two On An Island (1940), Aries Is Rising (1939), and The Happiest Days (1939).[3]

Craven was stationed in Naples during World War II and put on shows for the USO.[1]

Though born in New York City, he attended Beverly Hills High School, in the early 1930s. His stage family had a long history of alternating generations of men named John with subsequent generations of men named Frank.

On November 24, 1995, Craven died at his home in Salt Point, New York.[4][5]


Year Title Role Notes
1943 For God and Country Danny Brewer Short
1944 The Purple Heart Sgt. Martin Stoner
1944 Meet the People John Swanson
1944 In the Meantime, Darling Sleeping Soldier Uncredited
1946 Flight to Nowhere Claude Forrest
1946 Swell Guy Mike O'Connor
1953 Count the Hours! George Braden
1954 Security Risk Dr. Lanson
1955 The Green Mountain Boys Remeber Baker TV movie
1955 Battle Stations Cmdr. James Matthews
1956 Navy Wife Dr. Carter
1956 Hold Back the Night Maj. Bob MacKay
1956 Friendly Persuasion Band Leader Uncredited
1958 Revolt in the Big House Guard Uncredited
1960 Ocean's 11 Cashier Uncredited
1960 Let's Make Love Comstock Uncredited
1964 The Brass Bottle 2nd Psychiatrist Uncredited
1970 The Wild Scene Morton

Selected Television[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1956 The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp Harry Drew / Dolan Episode "One of Jesse's Gang"
1960 Wanted Dead or Alive Zack Dawson Season 3, Episode 9 "Criss-Cross"


  1. ^ a b c "John Craven, 79, Who Played George in Original 'Our Town'". The New York Times. November 28, 1995. p. B 12. Retrieved February 19, 2021 – via ProQuest.
  2. ^ Drutman, Irving (February 25, 1940). "Yes, He's Frank Craven's Son But He's Making His Own Way". Miami Daily News. New York Herald Tribune. p. 48. Retrieved February 19, 2021 – via
  3. ^ "John Craven". Internet Broadway Database. The Broadway League. Archived from the original on February 19, 2021. Retrieved February 19, 2021.
  4. ^ Willis, John; Monush, Barry (January 1997). Screen World 1996. Hal Leonard Corporation. p. 294. ISBN 978-1-55783-252-8. Retrieved February 19, 2021.
  5. ^ (27 November 1995). Actor John Craven Dies at 79, Buffalo News

External links[edit]