Frank Andrew Lovejoy Jr. (March 28, 1912 – October 2, 1962) was an American actor in radio, film, and television. He is perhaps best remembered for appearing in the film noir The Hitch-Hiker and for starring in the radio drama Night Beat.
Frank Lovejoy in 1960
|Died||October 2, 1962 (aged 50)|
New York City, New York, U.S.
|Resting place||Holy Cross Cemetery, Culver City|
(m. 1939; div. 1940)
(m. 1940; died 1962)
He was born in the Bronx, New York, but grew up in New Jersey. His father, Frank Andrew Lovejoy, Sr., was a furniture salesman from Maine. His mother, Nora, was born in Massachusetts, to Irish immigrant parents.
A successful radio actor, Lovejoy played Broadway Harry on the Gay Nineties Revue and was heard on the 1930s crime drama series Gang Busters. Lovejoy was a narrator (during the first season) for the show This Is Your FBI.
In radio soap operas, Lovejoy played Dr. Christopher Ellerbe in Valiant Lady, Sam Foster in This Day Is Ours, and he had the roles of Brad Forbes on Brave Tomorrow and Larry Halliday in Bright Horizon. He also played the title character on the syndicated The Blue Beetle in 1940, several episodes of The Whistler, and starred in the later newspaper drama series Night Beat in the early 1950s and in episodes of Suspense in the late 1950s. He also starred as John Malone in The Amazing Mr. Malone.
In films of the 1940s and 1950s, Lovejoy mostly played supporting roles. Appearing in movies such as Goodbye, My Fancy (1951) with Joan Crawford, and The Hitch-Hiker (1953) directed by Ida Lupino, Lovejoy was effective playing the movie's everyman in extraordinary situations. He was in several war movies, notably Stanley Kramer's Home of the Brave (1949), Breakthrough (1950), Joseph H. Lewis's Retreat, Hell! (1952) which portrayed the United States Marine Corps' retreat from the Chosin Reservoir (Changjin Reservoir) during the Korean War and as a Marine sergeant again in Beachhead (1954), and Strategic Air Command (1955) with James Stewart. In 1951, he had the title role in I Was a Communist for the FBI with co-stars Ron Hagerthy, Paul Picerni, and Philip Carey.
Lovejoy starred in two short-run TV series, Man Against Crime and Meet McGraw. Episodes of these two series have never been released commercially on DVD or VHS and never aired as reruns. Meet McGraw episodes were screened at the Mid-Atlantic Nostalgia Convention.
Lovejoy's final television performances include the episode "County General" (March 18, 1962) on the ABC series Bus Stop with Marilyn Maxwell in the role of Grace Sherwood. That same season, he appeared on the ABC crime drama Target: The Corruptors! about the efforts of a New York City reporter to expose organized crime.
Lovejoy was first married to Frances Williams (1901–59), but divorced in the late 1930s. In 1940, Lovejoy married actress Joan Banks (1918–1998), with whom he had a son and a daughter.
On October 2, 1962, Frank Lovejoy died of a heart attack in his sleep at his residence in New York City. His wife, Joan Banks, called for medical help after she was unable to wake him. The couple had been appearing in a New Jersey production of the Gore Vidal play The Best Man.
|1948||Black Bart||Mark Lorimer|
|1949||Home of the Brave||Sergeant Mingo|
|1950||In a Lonely Place||Detective Sergeant Brub Nicolai|
|South Sea Sinner||Doc|
|Three Secrets||Bob Duffy|
|Breakthrough||Sgt. Pete Bell|
|Try and Get Me!||Howard Tyler||aka The Sound of Fury|
|1951||I Was a Communist for the FBI||Matt Cvetic|
|Goodbye, My Fancy||Matt Cole|
|Force of Arms||Major Blackford|
|I'll See You in My Dreams||Walter Donaldson|
|1952||Retreat, Hell!||Lieutenant Colonel Steve L. Corbett|
|The Winning Team||Rogers Hornsby|
|1953||She's Back on Broadway||John Webber|
|The Hitch-Hiker||Gilbert Bowen|
|House of Wax||Lieutenant Thomas "Tom" Brennan|
|The System||John E. 'Johnny' Merrick|
|The Charge at Feather River||Sergeant Charlie Baker|
|Men of the Fighting Lady||Lieutenant Commander Paul Grayson|
|1955||The Americano||Bento Hermany|
|Strategic Air Command||General Ennis C. Hawkes|
|Top of the World||Maj. Brad Cantrell|
|Mad at the World||Police Capt. Tom Lynn|
|Finger Man||Casey Martin|
|Shack Out on 101||Professor Bastion|
|The Crooked Web||Stanley Fabian|
|1956||Julie||Detective Lieutenant Pringle|
|1958||Cole Younger, Gunfighter||Cole Younger|
|1957||Cavalcade of America||Inspector Ed McCook||Ep. 'Chicago 2-1-2'|
|1948||The Blue Beetle|
|1948||Box 13||Various support roles||-|
|1950||Escape||Episode: "Danger at Matecumbe"|
|1950–1952||Night Beat||Randy Stone|
|1952||Hollywood Sound Stage||Episode: "One Way Passage"|
|1952||Suspense||Joe Broady||Episode: "The Wreck of the Old 97"|
|1952||Suspense||Billy the Kid||Episode: "The Shooting of Billy the Kid"|
|1954||Suspense||Mr. Kedman||Episode: "The Man from Tomorrow"|
- US Census 1920, Woodridge, Bergen Co., New Jersey, enumerator's district 125, sheet 18A
- "Saturday's Highlights" (PDF). Radio and Television Mirror. 13 (4): 52. February 1940. Retrieved 22 February 2015.
- Buxton, Frank and Owen, Bill (1972). The Big Broadcast: 1920–1950. The Viking Press. ISBN 978-0810829572. p. 249.
- Senseney, Dan (September 1940). "What's New from Coast to Coast" (PDF). Radio and Television Mirror. 14 (5): 36–37, 72. Retrieved 8 March 2015.
- Dunning, John (1998). On the Air: The Encyclopedia of Old-Time Radio. Oxford University Press. pp. 111, 119. ISBN 978-0-19-507678-3.
- "Radio's Golden Age". Nostalgia Digest. 40 (1): 40–41. Winter 2014.
- Kirby, Walter (February 10, 1952). "Better Radio Programs for the Week". The Decatur Daily Review. p. 38. Retrieved June 2, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.
- Kirby, Walter (March 16, 1952). "Better Radio Programs for the Week". The Decatur Daily Review. p. 44. Retrieved May 23, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.
- Kirby, Walter (April 27, 1952). "Better Radio Programs for the Week". The Decatur Daily Review. p. 48. Retrieved May 9, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Suspense 1957 - Single Episodes" (MP3). Retrieved March 4, 2018 – via archive.org.