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Will Geer

Actor
Died April 22, 1978 (76 years)
​From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Will Geer (March 9, 1902 – April 22, 1978) was an American actor and social activist. His original name was William Aughe Ghere. He is remembered for his portrayal of Grandpa Zebulon Tyler Walton in the 1970s TV series, The Waltons.

Geer made his Broadway debut as Pistol in a 1928 production of Much Ado About Nothing, created the role of Mr. Mister in Marc Blitzstein's The Cradle Will Rock, played Candy in John Steinbeck's theatrical adaptation of his novella Of Mice and Men, and appeared in numerous plays and revues throughout the 1940s. From 1948 to 1951, he appeared in more than a dozen movies, including Winchester '73 (as Wyatt Earp), Broken Arrow, Comanche Territory (all 1950) and Bright Victory (1951).

Geer became a member of the Communist Party of the United States in 1934. Geer was also influential in introducing Harry Hay to organizing in the Communist Party. In 1934, Geer and Hay gave support to a labor strike of the port of San Francisco; the 1934 West Coast waterfront strike which lasted 83 days. Though marred by violence, it was an organizing triumph, one that became a model for future union strikes Geer became a reader of the West Coast Communist newspaper People's World.

Geer became a dedicated activist, touring government work camps in the 1930s with folk singers like Burl Ives and Woody Guthrie (whom he introduced to the People's World and the Daily Worker; Guthrie would go on to write a column for the latter paper). In 1956, the duo released an album together on Folkways Records, titled Bound for Glory: Songs and Stories of Woody Guthrie. In his biography, fellow organizer and homosexual rights pioneer Harry Hay described Geer's activism and outlined their activities while organizing for the strike. Geer is credited with introducing Guthrie to Pete Seeger at the 'Grapes of Wrath' benefit Geer organized in 1940 for migrant farm workers.

Geer acted with the Group Theatre (New York) studying under Harold Clurman, Cheryl Crawford and Lee Strasberg. Geer also acted in radio, appearing as Mephistopheles (the Devil) in the 1938 and 1944 productions of Norman Corwin's The Plot to Overthrow Christmas. He also acted in the radio soap opera Bright Horizon.

Geer was blacklisted in the early 1950s for refusing to testify before the House Committee on Un-American Activities. As a result, Geer appeared in very few films over the next decade. Among them was Salt of the Earth (1954) which was produced, directed, written, and starring blacklisted Hollywood personnel and told the story of a miners' strike in New Mexico from a pro-union standpoint. The film was denounced as "subversive" and faced difficulties in its production and distribution as a consequence.

Description above from the Wikipedia article Will Geer, licensed under CC-BY-SA, full list of contributors on Wikipedia.
Movies & Shows on Plex
  • Bonanza
  • Broken Arrow
  • Salt of the Earth
  • Becky Sharp
  • The Mafu Cage
  • Savage
  • The Hanged Man
Known For
  • Seconds
  • In Cold Blood
  • Winchester '73
  • The Waltons
  • Broken Arrow
  • Salt of the Earth
  • Executive Action
  • Bandolero!
  • Brother John
  • The Reivers
  • Intruder in the Dust
  • The President's Analyst
  • The Tall Target
  • To Please a Lady
  • Lust for Gold
  • Napoleon and Samantha
  • Dear Dead Delilah
  • The Mafu Cage
  • Convicted
  • A Woman Called Moses
  • Johnny Allegro
  • Eight is Enough
  • The Kid from Texas
  • Black Like Me

Filmography

2019
1993
A Walton Thanksgiving Reunion · as Grandpa Zebulon Walton
1987
James Stewart: A Wonderful Life - Hosted by Johnny Carson · as Wyatt Earp (clip From Winchester '73 (1950))
1980
The Waltons: A Decade of the Waltons · as Grandpa Zebulon 'zeb' Walton
1979
1978
1978
A Woman Called Moses (TV Series) · as Thomas Garrett
1978
1978
Unknown Powers · as Host
1977
The Billion Dollar Hobo · as Choo-Choo Trayne
1977
The Love Boat (TV Series) · as Franklyn Bootherstone
1977
Eight is Enough (TV Series)
1977
1976
1976
Moving Violation · as Rockfield
1976
Law and Order · as Pat Crowley
1976
The Blue Bird · as Grandfather
1975
The Night That Panicked America · as Reverend Davis
1975
Starsky & Hutch (TV Series) · as Commodore Atwater
1975
1974
1974
Hurricane · as Dr. Mccutcheon
1974
The Memory of Us · as Motel Manager
1974
Silence · as Crazy Jack
1974
Honky Tonk · as Judge Cotton
1974
1973
Executive Action · as Ferguson
1973
Isn't It Shocking? · as Lemuel Lovell
1973
Savage · as Joel Ryker
1973
Harry O (TV Series) · as Len Mcneil
1973
Brock's Last Case · as J. Smiley Krenshaw
1972
The ABC Afternoon Playbreak (TV Series) · as Ben
1972
The Waltons (TV Series) · as Grandfather Walton
1972
Jeremiah Johnson · as Bear Claw
1972
Napoleon and Samantha · as Grandpa
1972
The Rowdyman · as Stan
1972
Dear Dead Delilah · as Roy Jurroe
1972
Kung Fu (TV Series)
1972
The Sixth Sense (TV Series)
1972
The Scarecrow · as Justice Gilead Merton
1971
The Jimmy Stewart Show (TV Series) · as Uncle Everett
1971
Cade's County (TV Series) · as Hurley Gaines
1971
Columbo (TV Series) · as Edmund Hidemann
1971
Owen Marshall, Counselor At Law (TV Series) · as Ben Hale
1971
Brother John · as Doc Thomas
1971
O'Hara, U.S. Treasury (TV Series) · as Singlefoot
1971
Alias Smith and Jones (TV Series) · as Seth
1970
The Moonshine War · as Mr. Baylor
1970
Pieces of Dreams · as The Bishop
1970
The Young Rebels (TV Series) · as Mayor Larkin
1970
The Brotherhood of the Bell · as Mike Patterson
1970
The Bold Ones: The Senator (TV Series) · as Senator Homer Bryant Wydell
1969
Witchcraft '70 · as Narrator
1969
The Reivers · as Boss
1969
Night Gallery (TV Series) · as Walt Peckinpah
1969
Love, American Style (TV Series) · as Desk Clerk (segment "love And The Pulitzer Prize")
1969
The Bold Ones: The Lawyers (TV Series) · as Elliot Leveridge
1969
The Courtship of Eddie's Father (TV Series) · as Harry I. Madison
1969
The Bill Cosby Show (TV Series) · as Mr. Kane
1969
Medical Center (TV Series)
1969
Then Came Bronson (TV Series)
1969
My Friend Tony (TV Series) · as Cast
1968
Here Come the Brides (TV Series) · as Benjamin Pruitt
1968
Mayberry R.F.D. (TV Series) · as Captain Charles Wolford
1968
The Name of the Game (TV Series) · as Mac
1968
Hawaii Five-O (TV Series) · as Professor Harold Lochner
1968
Bandolero! · as Pop Chaney
1968
Of Mice and Men · as Candy
1967
The President's Analyst · as Dr. Lee-Evan
1967
In Cold Blood · as Prosecutor
1967
1967
The Crucible · as Giles Corey
1967
The Invaders (TV Series) · as Hank Willis
1966
Seconds · as Old Man
1966
Mission: Impossible (TV Series) · as Doc
1965
Trials of O'Brien (TV Series) · as Judge Lindemann
1965
I Spy (TV Series) · as Uncle Harry
1965
Run for Your Life (TV Series) · as Judge David P. Andrews
1964
Daniel Boone (TV Series) · as Adam Jarrett
1964
Bewitched (TV Series)
1964
Black Like Me · as Truckdriver
1963
East Side/West Side (TV Series) · as Brian Lincoln
1962
Advise & Consent · as Senate Minority Leader
1959
Bonanza (TV Series) · as Calvin Butler
1955
Gunsmoke (TV Series) · as Slocum
1954
1951
The Barefoot Mailman · as Dan Paget - Miami Mayor / Postmaster
1951
F.B.I. Girl · as Mcallister
1951
The Tall Target · as Homer Crowley
1951
Bright Victory · as Mr. Nevins
1951
Double Crossbones · as Tom Botts
1950
Racket Squad (TV Series)
1950
To Please a Lady · as Jack Mackay
1950
Convicted · as Convict Mapes
1950
Broken Arrow · as Rancher
1950
Winchester '73 · as Wyatt Earp
1950
It's a Small World · as William Musk - Father
1950
Comanche Territory · as Dan'l Seeger
1950
The Kid from Texas · as O'fallon
1949
Intruder in the Dust · as Sheriff Hampton
1949
Anna Lucasta · as Noah
1949
Lust for Gold · as Deputy Ray Covin
1949
Johnny Allegro · as Schultzy
1948
Deep Waters · as Nick Driver
1948
The Chevrolet Tele-Theatre (TV Series) · as Sam Hobbs
1940
The Fight for Life · as Ballou
1939
Union Pacific · as Foreman (uncredited)
1935
Becky Sharp · as Spectator (uncredited)
1935
Mystery of Edwin Drood · as Village Lamplighter
1934
Wild Gold · as Poker Player (uncredited)
1934
Spitfire · as West Fry
1932
The Misleading Lady · as Mcmahon - Asylum Guard

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