B bábi, Tibor

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Bromberg, J. Edward (a.k.a. Joe Bromberg) (Temesvár, Hungary, now Timişoara, Romania, 25 December 1903 - London, 6 December 1951) – Actor. His family moved to the USA in his infancy. From his boyhood he was determined to pursue an acting career, first working in odd jobs, like silk salesman, candy maker and laundry worker to finance his training. He studied with the Moscow Art Theater and made his first American stage appearance at the age of 23 at the Greenwich Village Playhouse. He worked extensively with the Theater Guild. With his play Men in White he won the Pulitzer Prize in 1934 and attracted Hollywood’s attention. In 1936, with his film Under Two Flags, he began his long association with 20th Century-Fox playing a vast array of foreign villains, blustering buffoons, and the occasional gentle philosopher. Short, dark and stocky, he played father figures, villains and ethnic types. The corpulent Bromberg conveyed a perpetual air of middle-aged tension, allowing him to play characters much older than himself. His other Hollywood films include Jesse James, The Return of Frank James, Phantom of the Opera, Cloak and Dagger, Son of Dracula, and Mark of Zorro. He gained critical acclaim on Broadway in 1948 in Clifford Odets’ The Big Knife. Elia Kazan described him as an immensely talented actor who could play a great variety of character parts. He refused to answer questions before the House Committee on Un-American Activities; but others testified that he was a member of the Communist Party. He refused to cooperate in the enquiry, was blacklisted from Hollywood, and he was forced to seek work in England in 1950, where he died. – B: 1081, T: 7456.

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