John Bleifer

John Melvin Bleifer (July 26, 1901 – January 24, 1992) was an American actor whose career began at the end of the silent film era, and lasted through the mid-1980s. He appeared in feature films and film serials, and in a number of television series and miniseries. Bleifer also acted on stage, and appeared in several Broadway productions.

John Bleifer
JohnBleifer.1945.jpg
Bleifer ca. 1945
Born
John Melvin Bleifer

(1901-07-26)July 26, 1901
Zawiercie, Poland
DiedJanuary 24, 1992(1992-01-24) (aged 90)
OccupationActor
Years active1927–86
Spouse(s)Grace Klestick

Life and careerEdit

Bleifer was born in Zawiercie, Poland. After moving to the United States, he began his acting career in 1927, with a small role in the Edward Sloman film, Surrender.[citation needed] Over the course of his career, he would appear in well over 100 films, serials, television shows and Broadway plays. His European accent allowed him to play several different nationalities, while using essentially the same accent.[1] Bleifer did not make many silent films, but his career took off in 1933, after the advent of sound pictures.

The 1940s saw Bleifer's career continue on the same path he had taken in the prior decade. He had numerous small roles, many nameless and un-credited, as in: Archie Mayo's 1940 version of Four Sons, starring Don Ameche;[2] the war film Paris Calling (1942), starring Basil Rathbone, Randolph Scott, and Elisabeth Bergner;[3] the comedy They Got Me Covered (1943), starring Bob Hope and Dorothy Lamour;[4] Mr. Lucky, starring Cary Grant and Laraine Day;[5] the classic For Whom the Bell Tolls, starring Gary Cooper and Ingrid Bergman;[6] and the 1946 comedy Without Reservations, starring John Wayne and Claudette Colbert.[7] He also had several featured roles, such as: Pedro in the classic 1940 swashbuckler, The Mark of Zorro, starring Tyrone Power;[8] as Oscar Zimmerman in the spy drama Waterfront, starring J. Carrol Naish and John Carradine;[9] and as Franz Leiber in The Bowery Boys comedy, Smugglers' Cove (1948).[10] During this decade Bleifer appeared in several film serials, including Perils of Nyoka (1942),[citation needed] and Secret Service in Darkest Africa (1943),[citation needed]

During the 1950s Bleifer's film career slowed down, as he became more involved with the new medium of television. He only had a few featured roles in film, such as in: Lew Landers' State Penitentiary (1950), starring Warner Baxter, where Bleifer had the role of Jailbreak Jimmy;[11] and in the role of Jake Haberman in the 1957 police drama, Chain of Evidence.[12] He continued to appear in smaller roles in a number of features, including: the 1951 Humphrey Bogart film noir, Sirocco;[13] 1953's The Juggler, starring Kirk Douglas and directed by Edward Dmytryk;[14] the 1955 musical Kismet, starring Howard Keel and Ann Blyth;[15] the 1955 Bowery Boys comedy, Spy Chasers;[16] the 1957 musical Silk Stockings, starring Fred Astaire and Cyd Charisse;[17] and Edward Dmytryk's 1959 remake of The Blue Angel.[18] In the 1950s Bleifer appeared in numerous television shows, such as Dangerous Assignment (1952), Navy Log (1956), I Love Lucy (1956), The Count of Monte Cristo (1956), The Adventures of Jim Bowie (1956), Shirley Temple's Storybook (1958), Perry Mason (1958), Peter Gunn (1959), and Rawhide (1959).

Bleifer continued working through the 1960s, 1970s, and into the 1980s. He made numerous television appearances on shows such as Death Valley Days (1960), The Lawless Years (1961), The Untouchables (1961), Dr. Kildare (1962-3), The Man from U.N.C.L.E. (1966), Marcus Welby, M.D. (1969), Adam-12 (1971), Kolchak: The Night Stalker (1974), S.W.A.T. (1975), Police Woman (1976), Little House on the Prairie (1979), The White Shadow (1979), and Highway to Heaven (1984). Bleifer also appeared in the television miniseries QB VII, in the role of Ben-Dan.[citation needed] While his activity in films decreased, he did continue in the medium, with roles in such films as: the tobacconist in the 1962 comedy If a Man Answers, starring Bobby Darrin and Sandra Dee;[19] the Steward in The Hook, starring Kirk Douglas;[20] a small role in W.C. Fields and Me (1976), starring Rod Steiger and Valerie Perrine;[21] as Mishka in F.I.S.T. (1978), starring Sylvester Stallone, Rod Steiger, and Peter Boyle;[22] and as one of the Rabbis in the Robert Aldrich comedy, The Frisco Kid, starring Gene Wilder and Harrison Ford.[23] Bleifer's final performance was in the featured role of Hyman in 1986's Inside Out, starring Elliott Gould.[citation needed] Bleifer died on January 24, 1992 in Los Angeles County, California, and was interred in the Hillside Memorial Park, in Culver City, California, next to his wife, Grace, who had died three years previously, in 1989.[24]

FilmographyEdit

(Per AFI database)[25][26][27]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Erickson, Hal. "John Bleifer: Biography". AllMovie. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  2. ^ "Four Sons: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  3. ^ "Paris Calling: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  4. ^ "They Got Me Covered: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  5. ^ "Mr. Lucky: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  6. ^ "For Whom the Bell Tolls: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  7. ^ "Without Reservations: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  8. ^ "The Mark of Zorro: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  9. ^ "Waterfront: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  10. ^ "Smugglers' Cove: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  11. ^ "State Penitentiary: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  12. ^ "Chain of Evidence: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  13. ^ "Sirocco: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  14. ^ "The Juggler: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  15. ^ "Kismet: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  16. ^ "Spy Chasers: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  17. ^ "Silk Stockings: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  18. ^ "The Blue Angel: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  19. ^ "If a Man Answers: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  20. ^ "The Hook: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  21. ^ "W.C. Fields and Me: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  22. ^ "F.I.S.T.: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  23. ^ "The Frisco Kid: Detail View". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  24. ^ "John Bleifer". Find a Grave. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  25. ^ "John Bleifer: Filmography". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  26. ^ "John Bleiffer: Filmography". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  27. ^ "John Blieffer: Filmography". American Film Institute. Retrieved July 26, 2015.

External linksEdit