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Lyle Bettger

​From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Lyle S. Bettger (February 13, 1915 – September 24, 2003) was a character actor known most for his Hollywood roles from the 1950s, typically portraying villains. He is perhaps most recognisable as the wrathfully jealous elephant handler Klaus from the Oscar winning film The Greatest Show on Earth (1952). Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Lyle was the son of Frank Bettger, who was an infielder for the St Louis Cardinals. An enthusiastic fan of cinema, Lyle left school in his late teens with the ambition of becoming an actor. Bettger graduated from the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York. His theatrical debut was in Brother Rat at the Biltmore Theatre in New York City in 1936. After a period languishing in small-time theatre he landed the lead role in the Broadway production of The Flying Gerardos in 1940. When Paramount sent a talent scout to see the show, Bettger was signed on a three-year contract. Bettger's movie career began when he was cast as the lead in the film noir No Man of Her Own (1950). He soon became a regular on the set of Westerns such as Denver and Rio Grande (1952), The Great Sioux Uprising (1953), Drums Across the River (1954), The Lone Ranger (1956) and Gunfight at the O.K. Corral (1957). Lyle developed a reputation for playing the bad guy and excelled in villainous roles such as the menacing Joe Beacom in Union Station (1950) and the cold-blooded Nazi Chief Officer Kirchner in The Sea Chase (1955). Bettger also made many appearances in dramatic roles on television, starring in the 1957 series The Court of Last Resort as well as guesting on Hawaii Five-O, Rawhide, The Rifleman, Bonanza and The Time Tunnel. Lyle was married to Mary Rolfe (1940–1996) until her death. They had three children: Lyle Jr., Frank and Paula. He was also survived by a sister, Lee Morgan. Lyle Bettger died on September 24, 2003 in San Luis Obispo County, California. Description above from the Wikipedia article Lyle Bettger, licensed under CC-BY-SA, full list of contributors on Wikipedia.

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Feb 13, 1915 In Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Movie/TV Credits:
First Appeared:
In the movie No Man of Her Own 1950-02-21
Latest Project:
Movie La Classe américaine 1993-12-31
Known For
Movie La Classe américaine Famous Man (archive footage) (uncredited) 1993-12-31
Movie The Hawaiians Janders 1970-06-17
Movie Impasse Hansen 1969-05-07
Movie The Fastest Guitar Alive Charlie 1967-09-01
Movie Return of the Gunfighter Clay Sutton 1967-01-29
Movie Johnny Reno Jess Yates 1966-03-09
Movie Nevada Smith Jack Rudabough 1966-06-10
Movie Town Tamer Lee Ring 1965-07-07
Movie Guns of the Timberland Clay Bell 1960-02-01
Movie Gundown at Sandoval 1959-01-01
Movie Gunfight at the O.K. Corral Ike Clanton 1957-05-30
Series The Court of Last Resort Sam Larsen 1957-10-04
Movie The Lone Ranger Reece Kilgore 1956-02-25
Movie The Sea Chase Chief Officer Kirchner 1955-06-04
Movie Drums Across the River Frank Walker 1954-06-01
Movie Carnival Story Frank Colloni 1954-04-16
Movie Destry Phil Decker 1954-12-01
Movie The Great Sioux Uprising Stephen Cook 1953-07-17
Movie Forbidden Justin Keit 1953-12-02
Movie The Greatest Show on Earth Klaus 1952-02-16
Movie Hurricane Smith Clobb 1952-10-02
Movie Denver and Rio Grande Johnny Buff 1952-05-16
Movie The First Legion Dr. Peter Morrell 1951-05-04
Movie Dear Brat Baxter 1951-05-30
Movie No Man of Her Own Stephen 'Steve' Morley 1950-02-21
Movie Union Station Joe Beacom 1950-10-04
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