|Born||Sebouh Der Abrahamian
July 14, 1924
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
|Died||December 12, 2009
Greenwich Village, New York, U.S.
|Spouse(s)||Margot Stevenson (m. 1953-2009; his death) 1 child|
Val Avery (July 14, 1924 – December 12, 2009), born Sebouh Der Abrahamian, was an American character actor who appeared in hundreds of movies and television shows since the 1950s. In a career that spanned 50 years, Avery appeared in over 100 films and had appearances in over 300 television series.
Avery was born in Philadelphia. In his early years he acted in plays with the Armenian Youth Federation. Following his service in World War II, he attended the Bessie V. Hicks School of Drama in Philadelphia.
Avery's pock-marked face and shifty appearance allowed him to frequently be cast as a gangster, or other menacing heavies. Avery's TV roles include the Columbo episodes A Friend in Deed (1974), Dead Weight (1971), The Most Crucial Game (1972) and Identity Crisis (1975). Other TV appearances include The Untouchables, Gunsmoke, The Asphalt Jungle, Daniel Boone, The Twilight Zone, The Munsters, The Odd Couple, Kojak, Quincy, M.E., Law & Order, and Friday the 13th: The Series.
Some motion pictures Avery appeared in are the John Cassavetes films, Too Late Blues (1961), Faces (1968), Minnie and Moskowitz (1971), The Killing of a Chinese Bookie (1976) and Gloria (1980). His many other film credits include The Long, Hot Summer (1958), The Magnificent Seven (1960), Requiem for a Heavyweight (1962), Hud (1963), The Hallelujah Trail (1965), Nevada Smith (1966), Assault on a Queen (1966), Hombre (1967), The Brotherhood (1968), A Dream of Kings (1969), The Traveling Executioner (1970), The Anderson Tapes (1971), Black Caesar (1973), Papillon (1973), The Laughing Policeman (1973), Russian Roulette (1975), Let's Do It Again (1975), Lucky Lady (1975), Harry and Walter Go to New York (1976), Love and Bullets (1979), The Wanderers (1979), The Amityville Horror (1979), Brubaker (1980), Continental Divide (1981), Sharky's Machine (1981), Jinxed! (1982), The Sting II (1983), The Pope of Greenwich Village (1984), Too Scared to Scream (1985), Cobra (1986) and Donnie Brasco (1997).
Avery died on December 12, 2009 at age 85 in his Greenwich Village home. His ashes were given to his daughter, actress Margot Avery.
- Grimes, William (December 15, 2009). "Val Avery, Tough-Guy Actor in Movies, Is Dead at 85". nytimes.com. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2009-12-15.
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