Frank Faylen - Rotten Tomatoes

Frank Faylen



American actor Frank Faylen was born into a vaudeville act; as an infant, he was carried on stage by his parents, the song-and-dance team Ruf and Clark. Traveling with his parents from one engagement to another, Faylen somehow managed to complete his education at St. Joseph's Prep School in Kirkwood, Missouri. Turning pro at age 18, Faylen worked on stage until getting a Hollywood screen test in 1936. For the next nine years, Faylen played a succession of bit and minor roles, mostly for Warner Bros.; of these minuscule parts he would later say, "If you sneezed, you missed me." Better parts came his way during a brief stay at Hal Roach Studios in 1942 and 1943, but Faylen's breakthrough came at Paramount in 1945, where he was cast as Bim, the chillingly cynical male nurse at Bellevue's alcoholic ward in the Oscar-winning The Lost Weekend. Though the part lasted all of four minutes' screen time, Faylen was so effective in this unpleasant role that he became entrenched as a sadistic bully or cool villain in his subsequent films.



TV fans remember Faylen best for his more benign but still snarly role as grocery store proprietor Herbert T. Gillis on the 1959 sitcom Dobie Gillis. For the next four years, Faylen gained nationwide fame for such catch-phrases as "I was in World War II--the big one--with the good conduct medal!", and, in reference to his screen son Dobie Gillis, "I gotta kill that boy someday. I just gotta." Faylen worked sporadically in TV and films after Dobie Gillis was canceled in 1963, receiving critical plaudits for his small role as an Irish stage manager in the 1968 Barbra Streisand starrer Funny Girl. The actor also made an encore appearance as Herbert T. Gillis in a Dobie Gillis TV special of the 1970s, where his "good conduct medal" line received an ovation from the studio audience. Faylen was married to Carol Hughes, an actress best-recalled for her role as Dale Arden in the 1939 serial Flash Gordon Conquers the Universe, and was the father of another actress, also named Carol.

Photos

Filmography

MOVIES

RATING TITLE CREDIT YEAR
92% Funny Girl
  • Keeney
1968
No Score Yet The Monkey's Uncle
  • Mr. Dearborne
1965
43% North to Alaska
  • Arnie
1960
82% Gunfight at the O.K. Corral
  • Cotton Wilson
1957
No Score Yet Dino
  • Frank Mandel
1957
No Score Yet Three Brave Men
  • Enos Warren
1956
No Score Yet 7th Cavalry
  • Sgt. Kruger
1956
No Score Yet Away All Boats
  • Chief `Pappy' Moran
1956
No Score Yet The McConnell Story
  • Sykes
1955
No Score Yet Red Garters
  • Billy Buckett
1954
100% Riot in Cell Block 11
  • Commissioner Haskell
1954
100% 99 River Street
  • Stan Hogan
1953
No Score Yet Hangman's Knot
  • Cass Browne
1952
100% The Lusty Men
  • Al Dawson
1952
83% The Sniper
  • Inspector Anderson
1952
No Score Yet My Favorite Spy
  • Newton
1951
67% Detective Story
  • Gallagher
1951
No Score Yet Passage West
  • Curly
1951
100% 14 Hours
  • Waiter
1951
100% Father's Little Dividend
  • Policeman
1951
No Score Yet Copper Canyon
  • Mullins
1950
No Score Yet Convicted
  • Convict Ponti
1950
No Score Yet Francis
  • Sgt. Chillingbacker
1950
No Score Yet The Nevadan
  • Jeff
1950
No Score Yet Whispering Smith
  • Whitey DuSang
1948
No Score Yet Blood on the Moon
  • Jake Pindalest
1948
No Score Yet Variety Girl
  • Stage Manager
1947
No Score Yet The Perils of Pauline
  • Joe Gurt
1947
No Score Yet Welcome Stranger
  • Bill Walters
1947
100% Road to Rio
  • Trigger
1947
94% It's a Wonderful Life
  • Ernie Bishop
1946
No Score Yet California
  • Whitey
1946
80% Blue Skies
  • Mack
1946
100% The Blue Dahlia
  • The Man
1946
No Score Yet To Each His Own
  • Babe
1946
No Score Yet Two Years Before the Mast
  • Hansen
1946
100% The Lost Weekend
  • Bim
1945
83% The Canterville Ghost
  • Lt. Kane
1944
No Score Yet A Guy Named Joe
  • Major
1944
100% The Gang's All Here
  • Marine
1943
No Score Yet The Mystery of the 13th Guest
  • Speed Dugan
1943
No Score Yet Thank Your Lucky Stars
  • Sailor
1943
No Score Yet Mission to Moscow
  • Reporter
1943
No Score Yet The Falcon Strikes Back
  • Cecil
1943
No Score Yet Slightly Dangerous
  • Gateman
1943
No Score Yet The Hard Way
  • Policeman
1943
No Score Yet Star Spangled Rhythm
  • "Black Magic" Number
1942
96% The Palm Beach Story
  • Taxi driver
1942
83% Wake Island
  • Wounded Marine
1942
92% Yankee Doodle Dandy
  • Sergeant
1942
No Score Yet Across the Pacific
  • Barker
1942
92% The Pride of the Yankees
  • Third Base Coach
1942
No Score Yet Two Mugs from Brooklyn
  • Silk
1942
No Score Yet Joe Smith, American
  • Expectant Father
1942
No Score Yet Somewhere I'll Find You
  • Slim
1942
No Score Yet H.M. Pulham, Esq.
  • Sergeant
1941
No Score Yet Unholy Partners
  • Roger Ordway
1941
84% Sergeant York
  • Gunnery Spotter
1941
No Score Yet Tanks a Million
  • Skivic
1941
No Score Yet Let's Go Collegiate
  • Speed
1941
No Score Yet The Reluctant Dragon
  • Orchestra Leader
1941
No Score Yet Affectionately Yours
  • Ambulance Driver
1941
No Score Yet Knockout
  • Fighter
1941
No Score Yet Footsteps in the Dark
  • Gus
1941
No Score Yet Come Live with Me
  • Waiter
1941
No Score Yet City Limits
  • Actor
1941
No Score Yet Knockout
  • Actor
1941
No Score Yet No Time for Comedy
  • Cab Driver
1940
95% They Drive by Night
  • Driver
1940
No Score Yet Brother Orchid
  • Superintendent of Service
1940
80% Edison, the Man
  • Galbreath
1940
100% The Grapes of Wrath
  • Tim Wallace
1940
No Score Yet Castle on the Hudson
  • Guard who is slugged
1940
No Score Yet The Fighting 69th
  • Engineer Sergeant
1940
No Score Yet Invisible Stripes
  • Steve the Henchman
1939
94% Gone With the Wind
  • Soldier Aiding Dr. Meade
1939
No Score Yet The Star Maker
  • Reporter #1
1939
No Score Yet Five Came Back
  • Press Photographer
1939
No Score Yet Women in the Wind
  • Mechanic
1939
No Score Yet Idiot's Delight
  • Ed
1939
No Score Yet Nick Carter, Master Detective
  • Pete Foley
1939
No Score Yet Lucky Night
  • Announcer
1939
No Score Yet Reno
  • Hezzy Briggs
1939
No Score Yet Too Hot to Handle
  • Assistant Dubber
1938
No Score Yet They Won't Forget
  • Bill Price
1937
No Score Yet That Certain Woman
  • Reporter
1937
No Score Yet San Quentin
  • Convict
1937
No Score Yet Ever Since Eve
  • Bandit Leader
1937
No Score Yet Kid Galahad
  • Barney
1937
100% Marked Woman
  • Taxi Driver
1937
No Score Yet Cherokee Strip
  • Joe Brady
1937
No Score Yet Bullets or Ballots
  • Gatley
1936
No Score Yet Border Flight
  • Jimmie
1936
No Score Yet The Golden Arrow
  • Reporter
1936
No Score Yet Many Loves Of Dobie Gillis
  • Actor

Quotes from Frank Faylen's Characters