Harold Vernon Gould (December 10, 1923 – September 11, 2010) was an American character actor. He appeared as Martin Morgenstern on the sitcom Rhoda (1974–78) and Miles Webber on the sitcom The Golden Girls (1989–92). A five-time Emmy Award nominee, Gould acted in film and television for nearly 50 years, appearing in more than 300 television shows, 20 major motion pictures, and over 100 stage plays. He was known for playing elegant, well-dressed men (as in The Sting), and he regularly played Jewish characters and grandfather-type figures on television and in film.
Gould shortly before his death in 2010
Harold Vernon Goldstein
December 10, 1923
Schenectady, New York, U.S.
|Died||September 11, 2010 (aged 86)|
Lea (Shampanier) Vernon (m. 1950)
Gould was born to a Jewish family in Schenectady, New York. He was the son of Louis Goldstein, a postal worker, and Lillian, a homemaker who did part-time work for the state health department. Gould was raised in Colonie, New York and was valedictorian of his high school class. He enrolled at Albany Teachers College upon graduation (now known as University at Albany, SUNY), and studied to become a social studies or English teacher.
After two years in college, Gould enlisted in the United States Army, during World War II, and saw combat in France in a mortar battalion. He developed trench foot, and was sent to England to recover. After convalescence, Gould served in a rail transport unit in France.
After the war, Gould returned to Albany Teachers College to study drama, and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1947. He performed in summer stock theatre on Cape Cod, then decided to enroll at Cornell University to study drama and speech. Gould earned a master of arts degree in 1948 and a Ph.D. in theatre in 1953 from Cornell, and also met his future wife, Lea Vernon.
Upon graduation, Gould accepted a position at Randolph-Macon Woman's College in Lynchburg, Virginia, where he spent three years teaching and doing stage work. He made his professional theatre debut in 1955 as Thomas Jefferson in The Common Glory in Williamsburg.
In 1956, Gould was offered a professorship in the drama department at the University of California, Riverside, which he accepted. He taught there until 1960, when he decided to try professional acting himself. He had difficulty finding acting jobs at first, and had to take work as a security guard and as a part-time acting teacher at UCLA.
Gould made his film debut in Two for the Seesaw but was not credited for his work; his first credited role was a small part in The Coach (both 1962). He gradually found more work and gained roles in The Yellow Canary, a Rod Serling movie with Pat Boone, Jack Klugman, and Barbara Eden; The Satan Bug; Inside Daisy Clover; and Harper, starring Paul Newman.
Gould worked steadily in television in the 1960s and early 1970s, including roles in Dennis the Menace, Dr. Kildare, Hazel, The Twilight Zone, The Donna Reed Show, Get Smart, Hogan's Heroes, I Dream Of Jeannie, The F.B.I., The Big Valley, Cannon. Get Smart and Mission: Impossible. Gould originated the role of Marlo Thomas's father Lou in the 1965 pilot for That Girl, but the series role went to Lew Parker. He appeared in The Long, Hot Summer and He & She, two short-lived television series. Gould also acted in a pilot, later broadcast as a 1972 episode of Love, American Style titled "Love and the Happy Days" as Howard Cunningham, the frustrated father of a young man named Richie Cunningham (played by Ron Howard).
When ABC turned that episode into a series called Happy Days, Gould was tabbed to reprise the Howard Cunningham role. However, when production was delayed, he went abroad to perform in a play. Midway through the play's run, after learning Happy Days was ready to begin shooting, he decided to honor his commitment to the stage production and passed on the part, which led to Tom Bosley being cast as the family patriarch. Gould would later state that a requirement to shave his beard was also a factor in his declining the role.
Gould had worked in television and film for almost fifteen years before his career really took off with his portrayal of Kid Twist in The Sting (1973); he appeared in Woody Allen's Love and Death (1975); as the villainous head of a conglomerate in Silent Movie (1976, directed by Mel Brooks), and made guest appearances on television shows such as Hawaii Five-O (multiple appearances as Honore Vashon, one of the series' most memorable villains), Petrocelli, The Love Boat and Soap, where he played the hospital roommate of Jody Dallas (Billy Crystal) who has suicidal feelings while deciding whether or not to undergo a sex change.
In 1972, Gould was cast as Martin Morgenstern, the father of Mary's best friend Rhoda, in an episode of The Mary Tyler Moore Show. He reprised the role the following year and was hired as a regular when Rhoda became a spin-off in 1974. Gould appeared in the short-lived 1977 series The Feather and Father Gang, starring as Harry Danton, a smooth-talking ex-con man, with Stefanie Powers as Toni "Feather" Danton, his daughter and a hard-working, successful lawyer. The show was canceled after 13 episodes, and Gould returned to Rhoda for the remainder of its run.
Gould also appeared in the miniseries Washington: Behind Closed Doors. In the 1980 NBC miniseries The Scarlett O'Hara War, he portrayed Louis B. Mayer and gained an Emmy nomination. He appeared as Chad Lowe's grandfather in Spencer, and played a Jewish widower wooing the Christian Katharine Hepburn in Mrs. Delafield Wants to Marry. Other roles included a married man having an affair with another member of his Yiddish-speaking club in an episode of the PBS series The Sunset Years, and as the owner of a deli grooming two African-American men to inherit his business in Singer & Sons. Gould received Emmy nominations for his roles in Rhoda, Mrs. Delafield Wants to Marry and Moviola.
Gould played Miles Webber, the steadfast suitor of Rose Nylund (Betty White) on the NBC series The Golden Girls (he also played another of Rose's boyfriends, Arnie, in the show's first season). He portrayed the father of a villain called The Prankster on Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman and made guest appearances on television series such as Felicity, The King of Queens, Touched by an Angel, and Judging Amy. Gould's film roles in the 1990s and 2000s include appearances in Stuart Little, Patch Adams, The Master of Disguise, the 2003 remake of Freaky Friday, Nobody's Perfect, and Whisper of the Heart.
His stage credits include Broadway theatre plays such as Jules Feiffer's Grown Ups, Neil Simon's Fools, Richard Baer's Mixed Emotions, and Tom Stoppard's Artist Descending a Staircase. Gould won an Obie Award in 1969 for his work in The Increased Difficulty of Concentration, written by Václav Havel, and reprised the role for a 1988 PBS version of the play. Gould was an early and longtime (48 years) member of Theatre West, the oldest membership theatre company in Los Angeles. He played Mr. Green in Jeff Baron's Visiting Mr. Green" at the Pasadena Playhouse.
|1951||The Man from Planet X||Frightened Villager||Uncredited|
|Two for the Seesaw||Bit||Uncredited|
|1963||The Yellow Canary||Ponelli|
|1964||Marnie||Mr. Garrett - Manager of Farm||Uncredited|
|1965||The Satan Bug||Dr. Ostrer||Uncredited|
|The Spy with My Face||Doctor|
|Inside Daisy Clover||Cop on Pier|
|An American Dream||Ganucci's Attorney|
|1968||Project X||Col. Holt|
|1969||The Arrangement||Dr. Leibman|
|1970||The Lawyer||Eric P. Scott|
|1972||Where Does It Hurt?||Dr. Zerny|
|1973||The Sting||Kid Twist|
|1974||The Front Page||The Mayor|
|1975||The Strongest Man in the World||Regent Dietz|
|Love and Death||Anton|
|The Big Bus||Professor Baxter|
|1978||The One and Only||Hector Moses|
|1980||Seems Like Old Times||Judge John Channing|
|1984||The Dream Chasers||Telford Stampley|
|1986||Playing for Keeps||Rockefeller|
|1991||Birch Street Gym||Jack||Short|
|1995||Whisper of the Heart||Shiro Nishi||English version, Voice|
|Killer: A Journal of Murder||Old Henry Lesser|
|Lover's Knot||Alan Smithee|
|1998||My Giant||Milt Kaminski|
|1998||Beloved||Barber Shop Man #4||Uncredited|
|1998||Patch Adams||Arthur Mendelson|
|1998||Brown's Requiem||Solly K|
|1999||Stuart Little||Grandpa Spencer|
|2001||Dying on the Edge||Arthur|
|2002||The Master of Disguise||Grandfather Disguisey|
|Brother Bear||Old Denahi||Voice|
|2005||English as a Second Language||Wayne|
|1961–1963||Dennis the Menace||Mr. Sparks / Tramp||2 episodes|
|1961–1965||Dr. Kildare||Earl McCloskey / Dr. Peter Duey / Frank the Cop||3 episodes|
|1962||National Velvet||Episode: "The Rumor"|
|1962||The Donna Reed Show||Cal Winslow||Episode: "Rebel with a Cause"|
|1962–1963||The Eleventh Hour||Judge / Eric Stanger / Paul Brauner||3 episodes|
|1962–1965||Hazel||Judge Winston / Mr. Wheeler / TV Announcer / Mr. Prior||4 episodes|
|1962–1965||The Virginian||Lacey / John Marshall Harrison / John Anderson / Adam Pendleton / Prosecutor Black / Prosecutor Tom Finney||6 episodes|
|1963||Empire||Judge Will||Episode: "Stopover on the Way to the Moon"|
|1963||The Twilight Zone||General Larrabee||Episode: "Probe 7, Over and Out"|
|1963||The Alfred Hitchcock Hour||District Attorney||Episode: "How to Get Rid of Your Wife"|
|1964||The Man from U.N.C.L.E.||Doctor||Episode: "The Double Affair"|
|1964||Perry Mason||Lawrence West||Episode: "The Case of the Latent Lover"|
|1964–1965||The Jack Benny Show||Director / Mr. Hunter, First IRS Man / DMV Clerk - Corrects Exam||5 episodes|
|1964–1967||The Fugitive||Tom Crailer / Dr. Willis / Eller - Interviewer||3 episodes|
|1964–1974||Gunsmoke||Lucius Shindrow / Hadley Boake||3 episodes|
|1965||That Girl||Lew Marie||Episode: "What's in a Name?"|
|1965||Mister Ed||Psychiatrist||Episode: "Ed the Pilot"|
|1965–1972||The F.B.I.||George Hale / Vincent Millard / Israel Jacobs / Martin Eldon / Doctor / Arnold Bruzzi / Dave Rice / Hans Hunter||7 episodes|
|1966||The Green Hornet||Calvin Ryland||Episode: "May the Best Man Lose"|
|1966–1970||Hogan's Heroes||General von Schlomm / General von Scheider / General Von Lintzer||4 episodes|
|1967||The Invaders||Allen Slater / Dr. Paul Mailer||2 episodes|
|1967–1968||The Flying Nun||Rabbi Mendez / Father Sweeney||2 episodes|
|1967–1968||The Wild Wild West||John Taney / Victor Freemantle||2 episodes|
|1967–1969||The Big Valley||Captain Crawford / Judge William Daggett / Major Wilson||3 episodes|
|1967–1980||Insight||God (Old Man) / Beggar / God / Jonathan / Morris Gertz / Eddie||7 episodes|
|1969||The Debbie Reynolds Show||Whitaker||Episode: "That's Debbie"|
|1969||Mission: Impossible||Vincente Bravo||Episode: "The Code"|
|1969||I Dream of Jeannie||General Whetherby / Mr. Winkler||2 episodes|
|1971||Columbo||Agent Carlson||Episode: "Ransom for a Dead Man"|
|1971||The Mod Squad||Lester Chennery||Episode: "Real Loser"|
|1971||A Death of Innocence||Alexander Weisberg||TV movie|
|1971–1975||Cannon||Colonel Mirza / Robert L. Jardine / Nicholas Troas||3 episodes|
|1972–1973||The Mary Tyler Moore Show||Martin Morgenstern||2 episodes|
|1972–1974||The Streets of San Francisco||Joseph Francis / Arthur Lavery||2 episodes|
|1972–1975||Hawaii Five-O||Honore Vashon||4 episodes|
|1973||The Partridge Family||Walter Yost||Episode: "Beethoven, Brahms and Partridge"|
|1973||Ironside||Martin Geller||Episode: "The Armageddon Gang"|
|1973||Needles and Pins||Joe||Episode: "Union Trouble"|
|1974–1976||Petrocelli||Haskell Fox||3 episodes|
|1974–1977||Police Story||Emmett Parnell / Sam Grossman / Andrea Basic||3 episodes|
|1974–1978||Rhoda||Martin Morgenstern||17 episodes|
|1976–1977||The Feather and Father Gang||TV Series (co-starring Stefanie Powers) as Harry Danton||14 episodes|
|1977||Soap||Barney Gerber||4 episodes|
|1979||The Rockford Files||Mr. Brockelman||2 episodes|
|1979||11th Victim||Benny Benito||TV movie|
|1979||The Man in the Santa Claus Suit||Dickie Dayton||TV movie|
|1980||Kenny Rogers as The Gambler||Stowbridge||TV movie|
|1980||The Scarlett O'Hara War||Louis B. Mayer||TV movie|
|1980||King Crab||Mr. Campana|
|1984||St. Elsewhere||Melvin Millstein||2 episodes|
|1985–1992||The Golden Girls||Miles Webber / Arnie Peterson||13 episodes|
|1986||Mrs. Delafield Wants to Marry||Dr. Marvin Elias||TV movie|
|1986||Scarecrow and Mrs. King||Andrei Zernov||Episode: "One Bear Dances, One Bear Doesn't"|
|1986||L.A. Law||Harry Finneman||Episode: "Simian Chanted Evening"|
|1986||Night Court||Walter Wise||Episode: "New Year's Leave"|
|1989||Empty Nest||Dr. Stanfield Weston||Episode: "Man of the Year"|
|1989–1992||The Ray Bradbury Theater||Colonel Stonesteel / Old Man||2 episodes|
|1990||Dallas||Dr. Wexler||2 episodes|
|1990||Singer & Sons||Nathan Singer||4 episodes|
|1992–1993||The Golden Palace||Miles, Rose's boyfriend||2 episodes|
|1994–1995||Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman||Edwin Griffin||2 episodes|
|1996||The Outer Limits||Gerry||Episode: "Paradise"|
|1996||For Hope||David 'Dave' Altman||TV movie|
|1996–2001||Touched by an Angel||Albert Einstein / Sam Moskowitz||2 episodes|
|1997||The Love Bug||Dr. Gustav Stumpfel||TV movie|
|1998||Felicity||Dr. William Garibay||Episode: "Hot Objects"|
|1999||Pacific Blue||Episode: "Hostile Witness"|
|2000||The King of Queens||Irv Glassman||Episode: "Surprise Artie"|
|2003||Judging Amy||Arthur||Episode: "Maxine Interrupted"|
|2010||Nip/Tuck||Walter Krieger||Episode: "Walter and Edith Krieger"|
- The House of Blue Leaves (1970) - Artie Shaughnessy - Truck and Warehouse Theatre, New York City, NY
- The Skin of Our Teeth (1983) - Mr. Antrobus - Old Globe Theatre, San Diego, CA
- Visiting Mr. Green (1999) - Mr. Green - Pasadena Playhouse
- Old Wicked Songs (2002) - Professor Josef Mashkan - Rubicon Theatre Company
- Tuesdays With Morrie (2005) - Morrie Schwartz - Rubicon Theatre Company
- "Harold Gould". New York State Writers Institute. Retrieved 2014-06-20.
- Harold Gould, What A Character!. Retrieved on 2006-08-13. Archived June 19, 2006, at the Wayback Machine
- "Harold Gould". Filmbug. Retrieved 2014-06-20.
- "Harold Gould". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved 2014-06-20.[permanent dead link]
- Weber, Bruce (September 13, 2010). "Harold Gould, Character Actor, Dies at 86". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-06-20.
- McLellan, Dennis (14 September 2010). "Harold Gould dies at 86; veteran character actor". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2014-06-20.
- "History". Theatre West. Archived from the original on 2014-11-27. Retrieved 2014-06-20.