|Herbert Marshall [Herbert Brough Falcon Marshall]
Birthplace: London, England, U.K.
Education: Harvard, Munich and Paris Art Institutes
1936 Shell Chateau
1936 Lux Radio Theatre
1938 Texaco Star Theatre
1939 Gulf Screen Guild Theatre
1939 Silver Theater
1939 Woodbury's Hollywood Playhouse
1940 Kraft Music Hall
1940 Canadian Red Cross Emergency Appeal
1940 Community Mobilization For Human Needs
1940 Information Please
1941 The Jell-O Program
1941 Old Gold Program
1942 The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show
1942 Over Here
1943 Lady Esther Screen Guild Theatre
1943 Command Performance
1944 What's New
1944 It's Time To Smile
1944 Columbia Presents Corwin
1945 The Star and the Story
1944 The Dinah Shore Program
1944 Cavalcade Of America
1944 Mail Call
1944 This Is My Best
1944 The Man Called X
1944 The First Nighter Program
1944 Christmas On the Blue
1944 The Harold Lloyd Comedy Theater
1945 Matinee Theater
1945 V-E Day Special
1945 The Pepsodent Show
1945 Theatre Of Romance
1945 Request Performance
1946 Stars In the Afternoon
1946 Hollywood Star Time
1947 Our Land Be Bright
1947 Lum 'n' Abner
1947 The Constant Invader
1948 Camel Screen Guild Theatre
1948 Hallmark Playhouse
1949 Giselle Of Canada
1949 NBC University Theatre
1950 U.N. Story
1950 Operation Tandem
1951 Guest Star
1951 Hollywood Sound Stage
1954 Hallmark Hall Of Fame
1957 CBS Radio Workshop
Meet Corliss Archer
Skippy Hollywood Theater
Herbert Marshall circa 1923
Herbert Marshal with his 2nd wife, Edna Best, and Rod LaRoque at a Hollywood fete circa 1932
A romantic Herbert Marshall with Miriam Hopkins in Trouble in Paradise (1932)
Herbert Marshall and Claudette Colbert in Four Frightened People for Cecil B. DeMille (1934)
Herbert Marshall and Constance Bennett from A Woman of The World (1935)
A suave, sophisticated Herbert Marshall circa 1936
Herbert Marshall publicity photo circa 1938
Herbert Marshall and Bette Davis in The Letter (1940)
Radio City marquee lit up for Herbert Marshall and Bette Davis in Little Foxes (1941)
Herbert Marshall and Joan Fontaine in Ivy (1947)
Herbert Marshall reviews script for A Man Called X at the CBS mike.
''Bart''and ''Boots''. Herbert Marshall and his beloved Boots Mallory at a party honoring Jeanette MacDonald's triumphal recital at The Hollywood Bowl circa 1948
Herbert Marshall and Vincent Price in The Fly (1958).
The beloved Herbert Marshall in one of his last publicity photos circa 1961
|From the Cedar Rapids Tribune of July 27, 1944:
Herbert Marshall Started Career As Forelegs of a Horse
By Station WMT
Here's one for Ripley.
Herbert Marshall, suave, cultured, man-of-the-world, who plays the title role in CBS' new dramatic series, "The Man Called X," began his theatrical career playing the front part of a horse. The records fail to state, however, who played the rear end.
Marshall the youth was a clerk for a firm of chartered accountants in London, his birthplace. At the age of 19, however, he entered the theater, first as an assistant stage manager, then as a boxoffice man, and finally as the forelegs of the horse.
Following that debut, Marshall played a succession of small parts--count, butler, soldier, sailor in repertory and stock companies. Finally he reached London, where in the role of Tommy in "Brewster's Millions" he first gained recognition.
While playing in "Brewster's Millions" Marshall caught the attention of Cyril Maude, subsequently joining the celebrated British actor in "Grumpy," both in London and in the United States. Marshall appeared as Ernest Haron, "a very nervous character." Marshall says he was so nervous at the audition, Maude thought he played the part to perfection.
During World War I, Marshall served with the British army and was severely wounded in the battle of Arras in 1915. Two months after the Armistice, he joined Sir Nigel Playfair's repertory troupe, and in the following years played in various productions with Marie Lohr, Tallulah Bankhead and other stars. His first appearance on he screen was with Pauline Frederick, in a silent film.
In 1925, Marshall appeared on Broadway in "These Charming People," and for the next seven years led the life of a transatlantic commuter, playing in both New York and London. "Interference" in London and "The High Road" in New York, were among his greatest successes during this period.
Marshall's final stage appearance was with his first wife, Edna Best, in "There's Always Juliet," on Broadway. In 1929 he was signed to a picture contract, making his first talking film with Jeanne Eagles in "The Letter." Last year he again appeared in "The Letter," this time with Bette Davis. Among his other films are "Rip Tide," with Norma Shearer, "The Painted Veil," with Greta Garbo, "Andy Hardy's Blonde Trouble," with Mickey Rooney, and innumerable others.
By his first marriage, Marshall has one daughter, Sarah. In February, 1930, the actor was married a second time to Lee Russell. His second child, Ann, was born June, 1942. Marshall, nicknamed "Bart" by his friends, is 6 feet tall, weighs 170 pounds, likes dogs, fishing and boating, and belongs to the Green Room club in New York and the Garrick club in London. He still maintains a family home in Cornwall, England, although he hasn't been there for the last eight years. "A Man Called X" is heard over WMT, Mondays at 8:30 p.m
As indicated above, Herbert Marshall had trained to become a certified accountant, but it was The Stage that intrigued him the most. What the article didn't mention--out of obvious deference to Marshall's ongoing successful career--is that he lost a leg while serving in World War I, rehabilitating himself with a wooden leg. This didn't dissuade him in the least from continuing to make The Stage his life's work. Marshall simply adjusted for it by employing a deliberately "square-shouldered and guided walk" which remained almost imperceptible to a growing number of his most ardent fans throughout the world.
Herbert Marshall spent fifteen years on The London Stage before making his first film appearance in the British silent film, Mumsie (1927). He seamlessly transitioned directly into talkies once they arrived, and never looked back.
Marshall's highly distinctive, smooth, baritone British accent, combined with an equally distinctive nonchalance in most of his deliveries created an on-screen persona that quickly propelled him onto the 'A' List of both leads and key supporting character roles. His blasé demeanor proved equally effective in light comedy, romantic drama, or in the most foreboding or villainous roles.
By the time he appeared in his first Hollywood film he was almost 40. That film was 1929's The Letter. The comparisons and contrasts between that early performance and his later, more famous and critically acclaimed performance with Bette Davis in 1940's The Letter make for some interesting observations about Marshall's range. In 1929's The Letter he was the murder victim, but by the 1940, at the age of 50, he portrayed the betrayed husband to even greater effect.
Herbert Marshall found himself in great demand throughout the 1930s, appearing in as many as five or six features a year during the period. His most affectionately remembered--and critically acclaimed--roles during the 1930s were Trouble in Paradise (1932) for Ernst Lubitsch and Blonde Venus (1932) with Marlene Dietrich.
Throughout the 1940s Marshall's Film roles naturally evolved into a string of character roles, albeit almost always highly effective and substantive. Alfred Hitchcock cast Marshall as the brilliantly devious pre-World War II peace leader secretly working against peace for the Third Reich. It was a predictably brilliant casting choice by Hitchcock and an equally brilliant opportunity for Marshall to perform against-type, in Hitch's 1940 classic Foreign Correspondent.
In yet another surprise for his adoring fans, Marshall portrayed the malevolent Scott Chavez in 1946's Duel In The Sun. With the nonchalance only a Herbert Marshall could deliver, Marshall quite casually shoots his Indian wife, a cantina entertainer, over her very public cheating.
Some reflection on Marshall's extraordinary Radio career might help to explain why these against-type performances were all the more effective, especially in Marshall's film roles.
Herbert Marshall's Radio career spanned the breadth and depth of The Golden Age of Radio. Indeed, if it's even possible, one might easily conclude that Herbert Marshall found an even more ardent and sympathetic audience over Radio than he ever acquired in Film. His appearances in the finest drama anthologies of the 1930s through 1950s were always greatly anticipated and highly promoted. Marshall's unstinting contributions to the War Effort were equally noteworthy--and utterly altruistic. One is reminded that Marshall lent his efforts to at least twenty Screen Guild Theatre performances in support of the Motion Picture Relief Fund. In addition, Marshall hosted the long-running Globe Theatre for the AFRS for some 180 performances.
Marshall also made Radio history by ushering in the long-running Suspense series with his stirring narration of The Lodger, as directed by Alfred Hitchcock, in 1940's CBS Forecast Season One, Week Two. Suspense wasn't immediately picked up for production, but within two years it was on its way to becoming a Radio legend.
But far and away Marshall's most engaging role was as Ken Thurston throughout the run of The Man Called X (1944-1952). Again, Marshall's nonchalance and unflappable demeanor lent a supreme confidence to Marshall's Ken Thurston character. Marshall's equal facility with the occasional light-comedy elements of the series, playing as he was off of the slippery, yet resourceful, Pegon Zellschmidt made for eight years of some of Radio's most compelling and entertaining espionage drama.
When the 1950s--and Television--arrived, Marshall was entering his 60s. Although his film appearances began to tend toward exploitation, he continued to deliver both highly sympathetic and highly effective performances for his age and maturity in Film. But it was Television through which Marshall found and even greater audience during the remainder of his performing years.
The proliferation of 1950s Playhouse-type drama anthologies seemed designed for his talents and throughout his Television career his performances were anticipated with the same excitement that his first Radio appearances had created. He didn't get the chance to reprise his Ken Thurston character over Television's The Man Called X (1956-57). That role fell to Barry Sullivan. But in one remarkable arc of five episodes of 77 Sunset Strip (1958) Marhsall's performances as Father Anthony, remain five of that series' most sought-after episodes.
Marshall's last Film performance was in 1965's The Third Day, released just a few months before Marshall's passing in January of 1966. His last Television role was in the made for TV movie The Presidency: A Splendid Misery (1964).
Herbert Marshall was married five times, the second time to Edna Best, an extraordinarily gifted actress in her own right. Their union produced the equally successful Sarah Marshall, most remembered for her 1960 Tony Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress for Goodbye Charlie. The spouse most associated with the era of Marshall's greatest successes in Radio and Film was Boots [Patricia] Mallory, to whom Marshall was married for eleven years until her passing in 1958.
With a career on The Stage of almost 25 years, a Film career of almost 40 years, a Radio career spanning the entire Golden Age of Radio, and a Television career of 15 years, it's easy to understand Herbert Marshall's almost universal appeal to a worldwide audience. The exemplars of his craft in Film, Radio and Television stand as an eduring tribute to Marshall's well-earned--and deserved--reputation as one of America's most beloved and respected actors.