Gene Barry - Rotten Tomatoes

Gene Barry

Highest Rated:   100% Forty Guns (1957)
Lowest Rated:   70% Thunder Road (1958)
Birthday:  
Birthplace:   New York City, New York, USA
The son of a New York jeweler, American actor Gene Barry emerged from his pinchpenny Depression-era childhood with an instatiable desire for the finer things in life. The acting profession seemed to hold out promise for fame and (especially) fortune. Making the rounds of theatrical agents in the 1940s, Barry, no matter his true financial situation, showed up dressed to the nines; grim reality soon set in, however, and the actor found himself clearing little more than $2000 a year -- on good years. When stage work seemed to yield nothing but bits, Barry turned to early television, then signed a movie contract in 1951. The only truly worthwhile film to star Barry was 1953's War of the Worlds, but even with top billing he had to play second banana to George Pal's marvelous special effects. Finally in 1956, Herb Gordon of Ziv Productions asked Barry if he'd like to star in a western. The actor resisted -- after all, everyone was doing westerns -- until Gordon pointed out that role would include a derby hat, a cane, and an erudite Eastern personality. Barry was enchanted by this, and from 1957 through 1961 he starred on the popular series Bat Masterson. The strain of filming a weekly western compelled Barry to declare that he'd never star on a series again - until he was offered the plum role of millionaire police detective Amos Burke on Burke's Law. This series ran from 1963 through 1965, and might have gone on longer had the producers not tried and failed to turn it into a Man From UNCLE type spy show. Barry's next series, Name of the Game, was another success (it ran from 1969 through 1971), and wasn't quite as grueling in that the actor only had to appear in one out of every three episodes. Always the epitome of diamond-in-the-rough masculinity, Barry astounded his fans in the mid 1980s by accepting the role of an aging homosexual in the stage musical version of the French film comedy La Cage Aux Follies. Yet another successful run followed, after which Barry went into semi-retirement, working only when he felt like it. In 1993, Gene Barry was back for an unfortunately brief revival of Burke's Law, which was adjusted for the actor's age by having him avoid the action and concentrate on the detecting; even so, viewers had a great deal of difficulty believing that Burke (or Barry) was as old as he claimed to be.

Highest Rated Movies

Filmography

MOVIES

RATING TITLE CREDIT BOX OFFICE YEAR
74% War of the Worlds
  • Grandfather
$234.2M 2005
No Score Yet H.G. Wells' The War of the Worlds: The Real Story
  • Actor
2005
No Score Yet These Old Broads
  • Mr. Stern
2001
No Score Yet The Gambler Returns: The Luck of the Draw
  • Bat Masterson
1991
No Score Yet Turn Back the Clock
  • John Forrest
1989
No Score Yet Perry Mason: The Case of the Lost Love
  • Glenn Robertson
1987
No Score Yet The Adventures of Nellie Bly
  • John Cockerill
1981
No Score Yet Guyana: Crime of the Century
  • Congressman Lee O'Brien
1980
No Score Yet Suzanne
  • Actor
1980
No Score Yet A Cry for Love
  • Actor
1980
No Score Yet Sodom and Gomorrah
  • Actor
1979
No Score Yet The Second Coming of Suzanne
  • Producer
  • Executive Producer
  • TV Commentator
1974
No Score Yet Subterfuge
  • Donovan
1969
No Score Yet Columbo: Prescription Murder
  • Actor
1967
No Score Yet Maroc 7
  • Simon Grant
1967
No Score Yet Hong Kong Confidential
  • Actor
1958
70% Thunder Road
  • Troy Barrett
1958
100% Forty Guns
  • Wes Bonnell
1957
No Score Yet The 27th Day
  • Jonathan Clark
1957
No Score Yet Back From Eternity
  • Ellis
1957
No Score Yet China Gate
  • Sgt. Brock
1957
No Score Yet The Houston Story
  • Actor
1956
No Score Yet Soldier of Fortune
  • Louis Hoyt
1955
No Score Yet The Purple Mask
  • Capt. Charles Laverne
1955
No Score Yet Red Garters
  • Rafael Moreno
1954
No Score Yet Naked Alibi
  • Actor
1954
No Score Yet Those Redheads from Seattle
  • Johnny Kisco
1953
85% The War of the Worlds
  • Dr. Clayton Forrester
1953
No Score Yet The Atomic City
  • Dr. Frank Addison
1952

TV

RATING TITLE CREDIT YEAR
No Score Yet The Twilight Zone
1985-1989
  • Devil
  • 1987

Quotes from Gene Barry's Characters

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