Jack Warden (born John Warden Lebzelter Jr., September 18, 1920 – July 19, 2006) was an American character actor of film and television. He was twice nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor—for Shampoo (1975), and Heaven Can Wait (1978). He received a BAFTA nomination for the former movie, and won an Emmy for his performance in Brian's Song (1971).
Warden in the 1950s
John Warden Lebzelter Jr.
September 18, 1920
Newark, New Jersey, United States
|Died||July 19, 2006 (aged 85)|
New York City, U.S.
|Other names||Johnny Costello|
|Height||5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)|
(m. 1958; his death 2006)
He was of Pennsylvania Dutch (German) and Irish ancestry. Raised in Louisville, Kentucky, he was expelled from high school for fighting and eventually fought as a professional boxer under the name Johnny Costello. He fought in 13 bouts as a welterweight, but earned little money.
In 1941, he joined the United States Merchant Marine but he quickly tired of the long convoy runs, and in 1942, he moved to the United States Army, where he served as a paratrooper in the 501st Parachute Infantry Regiment, with the 101st Airborne Division in World War II. In 1944, on the eve of the D-Day invasion (in which many of his friends died), Warden, then a staff sergeant, shattered his leg when he landed in a tree during a night-time practice jump in England. He spent almost eight months in the hospital recuperating, during which time he read a Clifford Odets play and decided to become an actor. Warden later portrayed a paratrooper from the 101st's rivals—the 82nd Airborne Division—in That Kind of Woman.
After leaving the military, he moved to New York City, and studied acting on the G.I. Bill. He joined the company of the Dallas Alley Theatre and performed on stage for five years. In 1948, he made his television debut on the anthology series The Philco Television Playhouse, and also appeared on the series Studio One. His first film role, uncredited, was in the 1951 film You're in the Navy Now, a film that also featured the screen debuts of Lee Marvin and Charles Bronson.
Warden appeared in his first credited film role in the 1951 in The Man with My Face. From 1952 to 1955, Warden appeared in the television series Mister Peepers with Wally Cox. In 1953, Warden was cast as a sympathetic corporal in From Here to Eternity. Warden's breakthrough film role was Juror No. 7, a salesman who wants a quick decision in a murder case, in 12 Angry Men.
Warden guest-starred in many television series over the years, including two 1960 episodes of NBC's The Outlaws, on Marilyn Maxwell's ABC drama series, Bus Stop, and on David Janssen's ABC drama, The Fugitive. He received a supporting actor Emmy Award for his performance as Chicago Bears coach George Halas in the television movie, Brian's Song, and was twice nominated for his starring role in the 1980s comedy/drama series Crazy Like a Fox.
Warden was nominated for Academy Awards as Best Supporting Actor for his performances in Shampoo and Heaven Can Wait. He also had notable roles in Bye Bye Braverman, All the President's Men, ...And Justice for All, Being There, Used Cars (in which he played dual roles), The Verdict, Problem Child and its sequel, as well as While You Were Sleeping, Guilty as Sin and the Norm Macdonald comedy Dirty Work. His final film was The Replacements in 2000, opposite Gene Hackman and Keanu Reeves.
Warden married French actress Vanda Dupré in 1958 and had one son, Christopher. Although they separated in the 1970s, the couple never divorced.
Warden suffered from declining health in his last years, which resulted in his retirement from acting in 2000. He died of heart and kidney failure in a New York hospital on July 19, 2006, at the age of 85.
|1950||The Asphalt Jungle||Bit Role||Uncredited|
|1951||You're in the Navy Now||Tommy Morse||Uncredited|
|1951||The Frogmen||Crew Member||Uncredited|
|1951||The Man with My Face||Walt Davis|
|1952||Red Ball Express||Undetermined Role||Uncredited|
|1953||From Here to Eternity||Corporal Buckley|
|1957||Edge of the City||Charles Malik||Alternate title: A Man Is Ten Feet Tall|
|1957||The Bachelor Party||Eddie Watkins, the Bachelor|
|1957||12 Angry Men||Juror #7|
|1958||Darby's Rangers||Master Sergeant Saul Rosen|
|1958||Run Silent, Run Deep||Yeoman 1st Class "Kraut" Mueller|
|1959||The Sound and the Fury||Ben Compson|
|1959||That Kind of Woman||George Kelly|
|1960||Wake Me When It's Over||Dave "Doc" Farrington|
|1961||The Lawbreakers||Captain/Acting Police Commissioner Matthew Gower||Film adaptation of The Asphalt Jungle television episode "The Lady and the Lawyer"|
|1962||Escape from Zahrain||Huston|
|1963||Donovan's Reef||Doctor William Dedham|
|1964||The Thin Red Line||First Sergeant Welsh|
|1968||Bye Bye Braverman||Barnet Weinstein|
|1971||The Sporting Club||Earl Olive|
|1971||Who Is Harry Kellerman and Why Is He Saying Those Terrible Things About Me?||Dr. Solomon F. Moses|
|1971||Welcome to the Club||General Strapp|
|1973||The Man Who Loved Cat Dancing||Dawes|
|1974||Billy Two Hats||Sherriff Henry Gifford|
|1974||The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz||Max|
|1975||Shampoo||Lester Karpf||First Academy Award nomination|
|1976||All the President's Men||Harry M. Rosenfeld|
|1977||Raid on Entebbe||Lt. Gen. Mordechai Gur|
|1977||The White Buffalo||Charlie Zane|
|1978||Heaven Can Wait||Max Corkle||Second Academy Award nomination|
|1978||Death on the Nile||Doctor Ludwig Bessner|
|1979||Beyond the Poseidon Adventure||Harold Meredith|
|1979||...And Justice for All||Judge Francis Rayford|
|1979||Being There||President "Bobby" of the United States|
|1980||Used Cars||Roy L. Fuchs
|1981||The Great Muppet Caper||Mike Tarkenian, the News Editor|
|1981||Carbon Copy||Nelson Longhurst|
|1981||Chu Chu and the Philly Flash||The Commander|
|1981||So Fine||Jack Fine|
|1982||The Verdict||Mickey Morrissey|
|1985||Alice in Wonderland||Owl|
|1986||The Cosmic Eye||Rocko||Voice|
|1988||Dead Solid Perfect||Hubert 'Bad Hair' Wimberly|
|1988||The Presidio||Sergeant Major Ross Maclure|
|1990||Everybody Wins||Judge Harry Murdoch|
|1990||Problem Child||"Big" Ben Healy|
|1991||Problem Child 2||"Big" Ben Healy|
|1992||Passed Away||Jack Scanlan|
|1992||Night and the City||Al Grossman|
|1992||Toys||Old General Zevo|
|1993||Guilty as Sin||Moe|
|1994||Bullets over Broadway||Julian Marx|
|1995||While You Were Sleeping||Saul|
|1995||Things to Do in Denver When You're Dead||Joe Heff|
|1997||The Island on Bird Street||Boruch|
|1998||Chairman of the Board||Armand McMillan|
|1998||Dirty Work||'Pops' McKenna|
|1999||A Dog of Flanders||Jehan Daas|
|2000||The Replacements||Edward O'Neil||(final film role)|
|1952||Tales of Tomorrow||Steve||1 episode|
|1952||Mister Peepers||Chicago Cabbie||1 episode|
|1953||The Campbell Playhouse||1 episode|
|1953||Man Against Crime||Deck Hand||2 episodes|
|1954-55||Kraft Television Theatre||Various roles||2 episodes|
|1954-55||Studio One||Various roles||3 episodes|
|1955||Justice||Two roles||"Flight from Fear" and "Save Me Now"|
|1956||The Alcoa Hour||Frank Doran||1 episode|
|1956||Climax!||Lieutenant Ravenna||"Flame-Out in T-6"|
|1958-59||Playhouse 90||Various roles||3 episodes|
|1959||Five Fingers||Fitzgerald||"The Moment of Truth"|
|1959-60||Bonanza||Mike Wilson||"The Paiute War"|
|1959-60||The Twilight Zone||James A. Corry
"The Mighty Casey"
|1959-60||The Untouchables||Larry Halloran
|The George 'Bugs' Moran Story|
The Otto Frick Story
|1960||The Outlaws||2 episodes|
|1961||Route 66||Adam Darcy||The Clover Throne|
|Checkmate||Farrell||"Between Two Guns"|
|Bus Stop||Joe Harrison||"Accessory by Consent"|
|The Asphalt Jungle||Deputy Police Commissioner Matthew Gower||13 episodes|
|1962||Naked City||Cornelius Daggett||"Face of the Enemy"|
|Naked City||Steve Lollo||"The King of Venus Will Take Care of You"|
|Naked City||Sam Langen||"The Spectre of the Rose Street Gang"|
|Target: The Corruptors||Jerry Skala||"The Organizers, Parts 1 and 2"|
|Tales of Wells Fargo||Brad Axton||"The Traveler"|
|Route 66||Sandor Biro||"Feat of Strength"|
|Going My Way||Carl Wiczinski||"Not Good Enough for Mary"|
|1963||Route 66||Major Barbon||"Two Strangers and an Old Enemy"|
|77 Sunset Strip||Max Eames||"Flight 307"|
|1964||Breaking Point||Carlo Scotti||"No Squares in My Family Circle"|
|1964||The Great Adventure||Latham||1 episode|
|1964||Bewitched||Rex Barker||"It Shouldn't Happen to a Dog"|
|1965||The Virginian||John Conway||"Shadows of the Past"|
|1965||Dr. Kildare||Ernie Duffy||1 episode|
|1966||The Wackiest Ship in the Army||Major Simon Butcher||29 episodes|
|1967||The Fugitive||Alex Patton||"Concrete Evidence"|
|1967||The Invaders||Barney Cahill||1 episode|
|1967-69||N.Y.P.D.||Lieutenant Mike Haines||49 episodes|
|1971||The Face of Fear||Lieutenant George Coy||Television film|
|1971||Brian's Song||George Halas||ABC Movie of the Week|
|1972||What's a Nice Girl Like You...?||Lieutenant Burton||ABC Movie of the Week|
|1972||Lieutenant Schuster's Wife||Captain Patrick Lonergan||Television film|
|1973||Wheeler and Murdoch||Sam Wheeler||Television film|
|1974||The Godchild||Sergeant Dobbs||Television film|
|1975||Journey from Darkness||Fred Hartman||Television film|
|1976||Jigsaw John||"Jigsaw" John St. John||15 episodes|
|1979-80||The Bad News Bears||Morris Buttermaker||23 episodes|
|1983||Hobson's Choice||Henry Horatio Hobson||Television film|
|1984||Helen Keller: The Miracle Continues||Mark Twain||Television film|
|1984-86||Crazy Like a Fox||Harrison "Harry" Fox Sr.||35 episodes|
|1987||Hoover vs. the Kennedys: The Second Civil War||J. Edgar Hoover||Television film|
|1988||Police Story: The Watch Commander||Joe Wilson||Television film|
|1989||Knight & Daye||Hank Knight||1 episode|
|1990||Judgment||Claude Fortier||Television film|
|1995||Problem Child 3: Junior in Love||Big Ben||Television film|
|1997||Ink||Timothy Logan||1 episode|
|1999||The Norm Show||Harry||1 episode|
|Year||Award||Result||Category||Film or series|
|1972||Emmy Award||Won||Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in Drama||Brian's Song|
|1985||Nominated||Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series||Crazy Like a Fox|
|1986||Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series||Crazy Like a Fox|
|1976||Academy Award||Best Actor in a Supporting Role||Shampoo|
|1979||Best Actor in a Supporting Role||Heaven Can Wait|
|1976||BAFTA Award||Best Supporting Actor||Shampoo|
Billy Two Hats is a 1974 Western film directed by Ted Kotcheff. It stars Gregory Peck, Jack Warden and Desi Arnaz, Jr.
Filmed on-location in Israel, Billy Two Hats is from a script by Scottish writer Alan Sharp, the screenwriter of Rob Roy and Ulzana's Raid.Brian's Song
Brian's Song is a 1971 ABC Movie of the Week that recounts the details of the life of Brian Piccolo (played by James Caan), a Chicago Bears football player stricken with terminal cancer after turning pro in 1965, told through his friendship with Bears teammate Gale Sayers (Billy Dee Williams). Piccolo's and Sayers's sharply differing temperaments and racial backgrounds made them unlikely to become as close friends as they did, including becoming the first interracial roommates in the history of the National Football League, and the film chronicles the evolution of their friendship, ending with Piccolo's death in 1970. The production was such a success on ABC that it was later shown in theaters by Columbia Pictures with a major premiere in Chicago; however, it was soon withdrawn due to a lack of business. Critics have called the movie one of the finest telefilms ever made. A 2005 readers poll taken by Entertainment Weekly ranked 'Brian's Song' seventh in its list of the top "guy-cry" films ever made.
The movie is based on Sayers' account of his friendship with Piccolo and coping with Piccolo's illness in Sayers' autobiography, I Am Third. The film was written by veteran screenwriter William Blinn, whose script, one Dallas television critic called, "highly restrained, steering clear of any overt sentimentality [yet conveying] the genuine affection the two men felt so deeply for each other."Although based on a true story, the film did include some fictional scenes. One example was when George Halas (played by Jack Warden) told Gale Sayers that he wanted to bench Brian Piccolo when he suspected that there may be a problem affecting his performance. He later learned of Brian's cancer. In reality, Jim Dooley was the head coach at that time, as Halas had retired from the position following the 1967 season.Bulworth
Bulworth is a 1998 American political satire comedy film co-written, co-produced, directed by, and starring Warren Beatty. It co-stars Halle Berry, Oliver Platt, Don Cheadle, Paul Sorvino, Jack Warden, and Isaiah Washington. The film follows the title character, California Senator Jay Billington Bulworth (Beatty), as he runs for re-election while trying to avoid a hired assassin. The film received generally positive reviews and a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay but was a box office failure grossing $29.2 million on a $30 million budget.Carbon Copy (film)
Carbon Copy is a 1981 British-American comedy film directed by Michael Schultz. The film stars George Segal, Susan Saint James, Jack Warden, and features Denzel Washington in his feature-film debut and produced by RKO Pictures and Hemdale Film Corporation and released by Avco Embassy Pictures on September 25, 1981. It was the first feature film produced by RKO Pictures after a break of many years.Crackers (1984 film)
Crackers is a 1984 American comedy crime film directed by Louis Malle. It was entered into the 34th Berlin International Film Festival.Written by Jeffrey Fiskin, the film is about a group of small-time out-of-luck thieves, led by the unemployed Weslake (Donald Sutherland), who attempt to rob the neighborhood pawn shop owned by the greedy Garvey (Jack Warden). It's a remake of the Italian film Big Deal on Madonna Street (1958) directed by Mario Monicelli.Donovan's Reef
Donovan's Reef is a 1963 American Technicolor film starring John Wayne. It was directed by John Ford and filmed on location on Kauai, Hawaii.
The cast included Elizabeth Allen, Lee Marvin, Jack Warden, Dorothy Lamour, and Cesar Romero. The film marked the last time Ford and Wayne collaborated.Escape from Zahrain
Escape from Zahrain is a 1962 American action film directed by Ronald Neame and starring Yul Brynner, Sal Mineo, Jack Warden, Madlyn Rhue and Anthony Caruso. The film is based on the novel Appointment in Zahrain by Michael Barrett (1960).Flashing Spikes
"Flashing Spikes" is a 1962 television play directed by John Ford and starring James Stewart, with a lengthy surprise appearance by John Wayne, billed in the credits as "Michael Morris" (apparently based on Wayne's birth name "Marion Michael Morrison"). The hour-long drama revolving around a disgraced ex-baseball player (Stewart) was broadcast as an episode of the anthology series Alcoa Premiere hosted by Fred Astaire.
The script was based upon a novel by Frank O'Rourke and the supporting cast includes Jack Warden, Tige Andrews, Patrick Wayne, Don Drysdale, Vin Scully, Harry Carey, Jr., and Edgar Buchanan. The Director of Photography was William H. Clothier.
This show's director John Ford, actors James Stewart and John Wayne, and cinematographer William H. Clothier also filmed The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance together the same year.
Flashing Spikes remains available for public viewing at the Paley Center for Media in New York City and Los Angeles.Heaven Can Wait (1978 film)
Heaven Can Wait is a 1978 American fantasy-comedy film co-directed by Warren Beatty and Buck Henry which opens with the central story line of Joe Pendleton (played by Warren Beatty) being mistakenly taken to heaven by his guardian angel, and the resulting complications of how this mistake can be un-done (given that Joe Pendleton's body is no longer available) providing the basis of the film's plot. It was the second film adaptation of Harry Segall's play of the same name, being preceded by Here Comes Mr. Jordan (1941).
The film was nominated for nine Academy Awards. The cast reunites Beatty with Julie Christie and Jack Warden, who also starred together in Shampoo (1975). Beatty and Christie had earlier occupied the lead roles in McCabe & Mrs. Miller (1971).
In 2001, a third film adaptation of the play was done, titled Down to Earth, sharing its name with the sequel to Here Comes Mr. Jordan (1941).Problem Child (film)
Problem Child is a 1990 American comedy film directed by Dennis Dugan and produced by Robert Simonds. It stars John Ritter, Michael Oliver, Amy Yasbeck, Gilbert Gottfried, Jack Warden, and Michael Richards.September (1987 film)
September is a 1987 film written and directed by Woody Allen. The film is modeled on Anton Chekhov's play Uncle Vanya, though the gender roles are often subverted.Allen's intention for September was that it be like "a play on film," hence the great number of long takes and few camera effects. The film does not use Allen as an actor, and is one of his straightforwardly dramatic films. The cast includes Mia Farrow, Sam Waterston, Dianne Wiest, Elaine Stritch, Jack Warden, and Denholm Elliott.
Critical response to September was generally lukewarm.Shampoo (film)
Shampoo is a 1975 American satirical comedy-drama film written by Robert Towne and Warren Beatty, and directed by Hal Ashby. It stars Warren Beatty, Julie Christie, Goldie Hawn, Lee Grant, Jack Warden, Tony Bill, and Carrie Fisher in her film debut.
The film is set on Election Day 1968, the day Richard Nixon was first elected as President of the United States, and was released soon after the Watergate scandal had reached its conclusion. The political atmosphere provides a source of dramatic irony, since the audience, but not the characters, are aware of the direction the Nixon presidency would eventually take. However, the main theme of the film is not presidential politics, but sexual politics; it is renowned for its sharp satire of late-1960s sexual and social mores.
The lead character, George Roundy, is reportedly based on several actual hairdressers, including Jay Sebring, Jack Sahakian, and film producer Jon Peters, who is a former hairdresser. Sebring was murdered by Charles "Tex" Watson in 1969. According to the 2010 book Star: How Warren Beatty Seduced America by Peter Biskind, the screenwriter Towne based the character on Beverly Hills hairdresser Gene Shacove.The Sporting Club (film)
The Sporting Club is a 1971 American comedy film directed by Larry Peerce and written by Lorenzo Semple Jr. It is based the 1968 novel The Sporting Club by Thomas McGuane. The film stars Robert Fields, Nicolas Coster, Maggie Blye, Jack Warden, Richard Dysart and William Roerick. The film was released on February 28, 1971, by Embassy Pictures.The Thin Red Line (1964 film)
The Thin Red Line is a 1964 Cinemascope film directed by Andrew Marton and starring Keir Dullea, Jack Warden, James Philbrook, and Kieron Moore. Based on James Jones's 1962 novel of the same name, the film follows the life of a number of American soldiers during the battle of Guadalcanal.
The black-and-white film was filmed in Spain. Bernard Gordon's screenplay of Jones's work concentrates on the relationship between the young rule-breaking, "survival-at-any-cost", Private Doll (Keir Dullea) and the older veteran 1st Sgt Welsh (Jack Warden).
Another film adaptation of the novel was released in 1998.The Verdict
The Verdict is a 1982 American legal drama film directed by Sidney Lumet and written by David Mamet from Barry Reed's novel of the same name. It stars Paul Newman, Charlotte Rampling, Jack Warden, James Mason, Milo O'Shea, and Lindsay Crouse. In the story, a down-on-his-luck alcoholic lawyer accepts a medical malpractice case to improve his own situation, but discovers along the way that he is doing the right thing.
The Verdict garnered critical acclaim and box office success. The film was nominated for five Academy Awards, including Best Actor in a Leading Role (Paul Newman), Best Actor in a Supporting Role (James Mason), Best Director (Sidney Lumet), Best Picture, and Best Adapted Screenplay (David Mamet).The White Buffalo
The White Buffalo is a 1977 western film starring Charles Bronson, Kim Novak, Jack Warden, Slim Pickens and Will Sampson. The film is directed by J. Lee Thompson, who frequently teamed with Bronson. It was also the final film Bronson made for United Artists.
The movie marks the second collaboration between Bronson and director J. Lee Thompson (following 1976's St. Ives).Used Cars
Used Cars is a 1980 American satirical black comedy film written by Robert Zemeckis and Bob Gale and directed by Zemeckis. Rudy Russo (Kurt Russell) is a devious car salesman working for affable but monumentally unsuccessful used car dealer Luke Fuchs (Jack Warden). Luke's principal rival, located directly across the street, is his more prosperous brother, Roy L. Fuchs (also played by Warden), who is scheming to take over Luke's lot. The film also stars Deborah Harmon and Gerrit Graham, and the supporting cast includes Frank McRae, David L. Lander, Michael McKean, Joe Flaherty, Al Lewis, Dub Taylor, Harry Northup, Dick Miller, and Sarah Wills.
Steven Spielberg and John Milius act as executive producers on the project, while the original musical score was composed by Patrick Williams. Filmed primarily in Mesa, Arizona, the film was released on July 11, 1980.
Although not a box office success at the time, it has since developed cult film status due to its dark, cynical humor and the Zemeckis style. It was marketed with the tagline "Like new, great looking and fully loaded with laughs." It was the only Zemeckis film to be rated R by the Motion Picture Association of America until Flight in 2012.While You Were Sleeping (film)
While You Were Sleeping is a 1995 American romantic comedy film directed by Jon Turteltaub and written by Daniel G. Sullivan and Fredric Lebow. It stars Sandra Bullock as Lucy, a Chicago Transit Authority token collector, and Bill Pullman as Jack, the brother of a man whose life she saves, along with Peter Gallagher as Peter, the man who is saved, Peter Boyle and Glynis Johns as members of Peter's family, and Jack Warden as longtime family friend and neighbor.
While You Were Sleeping was a critical and commercial success, grossing over $182 million at the box office. Bullock and Pullman received praise for their performances. Bullock also garnered a nomination for the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Comedy or Musical.You're in the Navy Now
You're in the Navy Now is a Hollywood film released in 1951 by Twentieth Century Fox about the United States Navy in the first months of World War II. Its initial release was titled USS Teakettle. Directed by Henry Hathaway, the film is a comedy starring Gary Cooper as a new officer wanting duty at sea but who is instead assigned to an experimental project without much hope of success.
Filmed in black-and-white aboard PC-1168, an active Navy patrol craft, You're in the Navy Now featured the film debuts of Charles Bronson, Jack Warden, Lee Marvin, and Harvey Lembeck in minor roles as crewmen. Screenwriter Richard Murphy was nominated by the Writers Guild of America for "Best Written American Comedy", basing his script on an article written by John W. Hazard in The New Yorker. Hazard, a professional journalist and naval reservist, had served during World War II as executive officer of the PC-452, a similar craft that served in 1943-44 as a test bed for steam turbine propulsion.