Tom Ewell - Rotten Tomatoes

Tom Ewell

Highest Rated:   100% Adam's Rib (1949)
Lowest Rated:   14% State Fair (1962)
Birthday:  
Birthplace:   Not Available
His parents wanted him to be lawyer, but S. Yewell Tompkins decided instead to major in liberal arts at the University of Wisconsin. A professional actor from 1928, he toured in stock companies then spent several lean years in New York, during which time he changed his name to Tom Ewell. He appeared in the first of a string of Broadway flops in 1934, occasionally enjoying longer runs in such productions as Brother Rat and Family Portrait. A trip to Hollywood in 1940 led to a handful of bit parts but little else. After four years in the Navy, Ewell finally landed a bona fide Broadway hit starring in John Loves Mary in 1947. This led to his "official" screen debut as Judy Holliday's philandering husband in Adam's Rib (1949). Hardly the romantic lead type, Ewell's crumpled "everyman" countenance served him well in such screen roles as Bill Mauldin's archetypal G.I. Willie in Up Front (1951) and Willie and Joe Back at the Front (1952). Back on Broadway in 1954, he won a Tony Award for his peerless performance as a "summer bachelor" in George Axelrod's The Seven Year Itch, repeating this characterization opposite Marilyn Monroe in the 1955 screen version. He went on to play wry variations of this role in Frank Tashlin's The Lieutenant Wore Skirts (1955) and The Girl Can't Help It (1956), in which his screen partners included such lovelies as Sheree North, Rita Moreno, and Jayne Mansfield. In 1960, he starred in The Tom Ewell Show, a one-season sitcom in which he played a standard harried suburbanite. Various illnesses and recurrent alcoholism made it increasingly difficult for Ewell to find work in the 1970s; his best showing during this period was as Robert Blake's disheveled pal Billy on the weekly TVer Baretta. Tom Ewell retired in 1983, after a brief stint as Doc Killian in TV's Best of the West and a character role in the Rodney Dangerfield film Easy Money.

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Highest Rated Movies

Filmography

MOVIES

RATING TITLE CREDIT BOX OFFICE YEAR
56% Easy Money
  • Scrappleton
1983
39% The Great Gatsby
  • Mourner
1974
No Score Yet They Only Kill Their Masters
  • Walter
1972
No Score Yet To Find a Man
  • Dr. Hargrave
1972
No Score Yet Suppose They Gave a War and Nobody Came?
  • Billy Joe
1970
No Score Yet Tender Is the Night
  • Abe North
1962
14% State Fair
  • Able Frake
1962
No Score Yet The Lieutenant Wore Skirts
  • Gregory Whitcomb
1956
75% The Girl Can't Help It
  • Tom Miller
1956
86% The Seven Year Itch
  • Richard Sherman
1955
No Score Yet Lost in Alaska
  • Nugget Joe McDermott
1952
No Score Yet Up Front (Up Front with Mauldin)
  • Willie
1951
No Score Yet Mr. Music
  • Haggerty
1950
63% American Guerrilla in the Philippines
  • Jim Mitchell
1950
No Score Yet A Life of Her Own
  • Tom Caraway
1950
100% Adam's Rib
  • Warren Attinger
1949
No Score Yet Back in the Saddle
  • Spectator
1941
No Score Yet They Knew What They Wanted
  • New hired hand
1940

Quotes from Tom Ewell's Characters