Chester Morris

1901 - 1970

The actor Chester Morris grew up in an artistic family. His mother was the comedian Etta Hawkins, his father William Morris was an actor, also his brother Adrian Morris (1907-1941). His brother Gordon Morris (1898-1940) was an author. 
He began his film career already in the silent movie era but only in the 30's and 40's he became a big star.

He made his stage debut in 1917 on Broadway in Lionel Barrymore's play "The Copperhead", he also made his film debut in the same years with "An Amateur Orphan" (17). It followed the silent movies "The Beloved Traitor" (18) and "The Road to Yesterday" (25) before he was nominated for an Oscar for his first talky "Alibi" (29).

His breakthrough came in the 30's where he impersonated often tough fellows. To his well-known movies of those years belong "The Divorcee" (30), "The Big House" (30), "Red-Headed Woman" (32), "Infernal Machine" (33), "Public Hero #1" (35), "Three Godfathers" (36), "Frankie and Johnnie" (36), "Counterfeit" (36), "Sky Giant" (38) and "Blind Alley" (39).

He achieved huge popularity in the 40's with his role Boston Blackie" Black. He impersonated this character in more than a dozen movies and was able to live up his love doing careful carried out masquerades and to demonstrate his dexterity.
He appeared among others in in the productions "Wagons Westward" (40), "Meet Boston Blackie" (41), "Wrecking Crew" (42), "High Explosive" (43), "Secret Command" (44), "One Way to Love" (46), "The Phantom Thief" (46), "Blind Spot" (47) and "Bostson Blackie's Chinese Venture" (49).

The expressive actor usually appeared in TV productions from the 50's, normally in single episodes of successful serials.
To these serials belong "Suspense: Black Panther" (52), "Danger: Death Pulls the Strings" (52), "Frontier Justice: Black Is for Grief" (59), "Naked City: Make-Believe Man" (61), "Route 66: Child of a Night" (64), "Dr. Kildare: Dolly's Dilemma" (64) and "Cimarron Strip: Without Honor" (68).

He only appeared seldom on the big screen in those years, e.g. in "Unchained" (55) and "The She-Creature" (56).
He didn't live to see the first night of his last picture "The Great White Hope" (70) with James Earl Jones and Jane Alexander. Chester Morris died in 1970 because of a barbiturate overdose.

Other movies with Chester Morris: 
Loyal Lives (23) Fast Life (29) Woman Trap (29) The Show of Shows (29) Second Choice (30) She Couln't Say No (30) Playing Around (30) The Case of Sergeant Grischa (30) The Bat Whispers (30) Corsair (31) Cock of the Air (32) The Miracle Man (32) Sinners in the Sun (32) Breach of Primise (32) Blondie Johnson (33) Tomorrow at Seven (33) Golden Harvest (33) King for a Night (33) Let's Talk It Over (34) Gift of Gab (34) Embarrassing Moments (34) The Gay Bride (34) I've Been Around (34) Society Doctor (35) Princess O'Hara (35) Pursuit (35) Moonlight Murder (36) They Met in a Taxi (36) The Devil's Playground (37) I Promise to Pay (37)  Flight From Glory (37) Law of the Underworld (38) Smashing the Rackets (38) Pacific Liner (38) Five Came Back (39) Thunder Afloat (39) The Marines Fly High (40) Girl from God's Country (40) No Hands on the Clock (41) Confessions of Boston Blackie (41) Canal Zone (42) Alias Boston Blackie (42) I Live on Danger (42) Boston Blackie Goes Hollywood (42) After Midnight with Boston Blackie (43) Aerial Gunner (43) The Chance of a Lifetime (43) Tornado (43) Gambler's Choice (44) One Mysterious Night (44) Double Exposure (44) Rough, Tough and Ready (45) Boston Blackie Booked on Suspicion (45) Boston Blackie's Rendezvous (45) A Close Call for Boston Blackie (46) Boston Blackie and the Law (46) Trapped by Boston Blackie (48) Serie "Cameo Theatre: The Great Merlini" (50) Serie "Starlight Theatre: Act of God Nonwithstanding" (51) Serie "Danger: The Undertaker Calls" (51) Serie "Schlitz Playhouse of Stars: Billy Budd" (52) Serie "Tales of Tomorrow: The Exile" (52) Serie "Lights Out: The Intruder" (52) Serie "Lux Video Theatre: Welcome Home, Lefty" (52) Serie "Tales of Tomorrow: The Glacier Giant" (52) Serie "Robert Montgomery Presents: The Law-Abiding" (52) Serie "Robert Montgomery Presents: The Big Night" (53) Serie "Kraft Television Theatre: Final Edition" (53) Serie "Suspense: Point Blank" (53) Serie "Danger: Towerman" (53) Serie "The Web: Rock-Bound" (54) Serie "Robert Montgomery Presents: The Greatest Man in the World" (53) Serie "The Philip Morris Playhouse: Walk in the Night" (54) Serie "Studio One: Jack Sperling; Forty-six" (54) Serie "Studion One: The Death and Life of Larry Benson" (54) Serie "Studio One: Blow Up at Cortland" (55) Serie "Appointment with Adventure: Time Bomb" (55) Unchained (55) The She-Creature (56) Serie "Kraft Television Theatre: Time Lock" (56) Serie "Studio One: The Arena" (56) Serie "Zane Grey Theatre: Black Is for Grief" (57) Serie "Kraft Television Theatre: Man of Prey" (57) Serie "Playhouse 90: Child of Trouble" (57) Serie "Oldsmobile Music Theatre: Too Bad About Sheila Troy" (59) Serie "The United States Steel Hour: Whisper of Evil" (59)Serie "Rawhide: Incident on the Road to Yesterday" (60) Serie "Diagnoses: Unknown" (60) A String of Beads (61) Serie "Checkmate: Portrait of a Man Running" (61) Serie "Ben Casey: An Expensive Glass of Water" (61) Serie "The Defenders: The Empty Chute" (62) Serie "Alcoa Premiere: The Contenders" (62) Serie "The Eleventh Hour: AlongAbout Late in the Afternoon" (62) Serie "The Defenders: The Bagman" (63) Serie "Alcoa Premiere: The Glass Palace" (63) Serie "Route 66: Soda Pop and Paper Flags" (63) Serie "East Side/West Side: The Name of the Game" (64) Serie "Espionage: Castles in Spain" (64) Serie "Kraft Suspense Theatre: Knight's Gambit" (64) Serie "Suspense: The Hunger" (64) Serie "Mr. Broadway: Don't Mention My Name in Sheboygan" (64) Serie "The Defenders: A Matter of Law and Disorder" (65) Serie "Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre: The Fliers" (65) Serie "Coronet Blue: A Time to Be Born, a Time to Die" (67) Serie "Gentle Ben: Busman's Holiday" (69)