74 (passed away Sep. 20th, 1973)
Aug. 16th, 1899
Weed, New Mexico, USA
Glenn Strange's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles1991 - Frankenstein: A Cinematic Scrapbook
1959 - Last Train from Gun Hill
1959 - Alias Jesse James
1959 - The Jayhawkers!
1958 - Terror in a Texas Town
1957 - Gunfight at the O.K. Corral
1957 - The Halliday Brand
1956 - The Fastest Gun Alive
1955 - Marty
1953 - Calamity Jane
1952 - The Lusty Men
1951 - Texas Carnival
1951 - Vengeance Valley
1951 - Comin' Round the Mountain
1948 - Red River
1948 - Bud Abbott Lou Costello Meet Frankenstein
1947 - Sinbad the Sailor
1947 - Brute Force
1947 - The Wistful Widow of Wagon Gap
1945 - House of Dracula
1944 - House of Frankenstein
1943 - Action in the North Atlantic
1942 - The Mummy's Tomb
1942 - The Spoilers
1940 - The Fargo Kid
1939 - Rough Riders' Round-up
1937 - Arizona Days
1934 - The Star Packer
Guest TV Roles
At various times in his life a rancher, deputy sheriff and rodeo performer, this huge, towering (6' 5") beast of a man was born George Glenn Strange in Weed, New Mexico, on August 16, 1899, but grew up a real-life cowboy in Cross Cut, Texas. Of Irish and Cherokee Indian descent, he taught himself (by ear) the fiddle and guitar at a young age and started performing at local functions as a teen. In the late 1920s, Glenn and his cousin, Taylor McPeters, better known later as the western character actor Cactus Mack, joined a radio singing group known as the "Arizona Wranglers" that toured throughout the country.
They both started providing singing fillers in film westerns in the early 1930s. Glenn would play extra or bit roles for a number of years -- whether a cowhand, rustler, henchman, sidekick, or plain ol' warbling, harmonica-blowing cowboy. Eventually in the late 30s his billing improved and he evolved into a full-time bad guy in hundreds of "B" westerns. He was seen (or glimpsed) in many of the popular serials of the day, including The Hurricane Express (1932), Law of the Wild (1934), Flash Gordon (1936/I), The Lone Ranger Rides Again (1939), and Riders of Death Valley (1941). It was his massive build that helped him break into the Universal horror picture genre of the 1940s. Horror star Boris Karloff had grown weary and fearful of his Frankenstein Creature typecast and abandoned the role. Glenn was the perfect replacement for the job and made his monstrous debut with House of Frankenstein (1944), quickly followed by House of Dracula (1945). It was he who played the Creature in the cult horror/comedy classic Bud Abbott Lou Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948) as part of the monstrous trio of Bela Lugosi's Dracula and Lon Chaney Jr.'s Wolf Man.
As the "B" western started faded off into the sunset in the 1950s, Strange moseyed on over to TV work, capping off his career with a steady (12 years) role as Sam the bartender on the classic "Gunsmoke" (1955) series from 1962 until shortly before his death from lung cancer in 1973.
- He played Butch Cavendish, the chief nemesis of the Lone Ranger, in _"The Lone Ranger" (1949)_ (qv).
- 'Boris Karloff' (qv)'s obituary in 1969 was run in newspapers with Strange's picture as Frankenstein's monster.
- Before becoming an actor, he had various jobs, including singer and professional boxer.
- He was one of the first actors to be asked to play The Creature in _Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954)_ (qv).
- A singing, songwriting cowboy by trade, Glenn collaborated on various tunes with western actor 'Eddie Dean (I)' (qv), including the opening title song for Dean's oater _Tumbleweed Trail (1946)_ (qv). In 1973, Dean would sing at Glenn's funeral service.
- He is interred at Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills Cemetery, Hollywood, CA.
- He was the fourth child of William Russell Strange & Sarah Eliza Byrd. He is the great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great grandson of Pocahontas & John Rolfe.
- Though 'Boris Karloff' (qv) is more popular as the Frankenstein Monster, it is Strange's version that is often used by Universal Studios for marketing purposes.
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