Osgood Perkins as Walter Burns in
The Front Page (1928)
|Born||James Ripley Osgood Perkins
May 16, 1892
West Newton, Massachusetts, U.S.
|Died||September 21, 1937
Washington, D.C., U.S.
|Cause of death||Heart attack|
|Spouse(s)||Janet Esselstyn Rane
James Ripley Osgood Perkins (May 16, 1892 – September 21, 1937) was an American actor.
Life and career
James Ripley Osgood Perkins was born in West Newton, Massachusetts, son of Henry Phelps Perkins, Jr., and his wife, Helen Virginia (née Anthony). His maternal grandfather was wood engraver Andrew Varick Stout Anthony. He was a descendant of Mayflower passenger John Howland. Perkins made his Broadway debut in 1924 in the George S. Kaufman – Marc Connelly play Beggar on Horseback. In the next twelve years he would appear in 24 Broadway productions, including The Front Page and Uncle Vanya.
Despite his success as a leading man in the theatre, Hollywood viewed him as a character actor. He appeared in 12 silent films, including Puritan Passions, before moving to talkies such as Scarface and Gold Diggers of 1937.
"The best actor I ever worked with was Osgood Perkins," Louise Brooks told Kevin Brownlow. "You know what makes an actor great to work with? Timing. You don't have to feel anything. It's like dancing with a perfect dancing partner. Osgood Perkins would give you a line so that you would react perfectly. It was timing -- because emotion means nothing." Brooks and Perkins appeared together in Love 'Em and Leave 'Em (1926).
His grandson Oz Perkins is now a film writer-director.
- Puritan Passions (1923)
- Wild, Wild Susan (1925)
- Love 'Em and Leave 'Em (1926)
- Syncopation (1929)
- Mother's Boy (1929)
- Tarnished Lady (1931)
- Scarface (1932)
- Kansas City Princess (1934)
- Madame DuBarry (1934)
- The President Vanishes (1934)
- I Dream Too Much (1935)
- Gold Diggers of 1937 (1936)
- Winecoff, Charles (2009). Split File: The Life of Anthony Perkins. Diane Pub Co. p. 10. ISBN 078819870X.
- "26 Elected to the Theater Hall of Fame." The New York Times, March 3, 1981.
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