Norman Lloyd, Veteran Hollywood Actor, Dead at 106
Norman Lloyd, who starred in Alfred Hitchcock’s Saboteur and portrayed Dr. Daniel Auschlander on NBC’s St. Elsewhere, died on Tuesday at his home in Los Angeles, as Variety reports. Lloyd’s friend, producer Dean Hargrove, confirmed his death to Variety. He was 106.
The Hollywood veteran’s eight-decade career spanned theater, radio, film and TV, where he served in a variety of roles including director and producer. While his own name may not be widely recognized, he was deeply respected within industry circles and he worked with some of the most renowned names in the business through several generations, including Hitchcock, Orson Welles, Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, Jean Renoir, Martin Scorsese, and Judd Apatow.
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Born Norman Perlmutter on November 8th, 1914 in Jersey City, New Jersey, his interest in performing began at a young age with singing and dancing. By age 9, he was paid professionally. In 1935, at the age of 20, he made his Broadway debut. In the Thirties, he became involved in socially-conscious theater, including working with the Federal Theatre Project whose members included Welles and John Houseman. When they formed the Mercury Theater, Lloyd joined them as a charter member. Lloyd earned accolades for his role in 1937 as Cinna the Poet in Mercury Theater’s controversial first production, Julius Caeser. Written by Welles, it was set in fascist Italy.
The following year, Welles launched Mercury Theater on the Air, which featured Mercury members, including Lloyd, who went on to do more radio performances.
Welles and the company moved to Hollywood and Lloyd followed to perform in Welles’ rendition of Heart of Darkness. However, it ended before filming began. Welles’ next project was Citizen Kane, but Lloyd returned to New York.
He developed a professional relationship with Hitchcock, and he made his film debut starring in the director’s Saboteur. He was also cast in a supporting role in Spellbound. Lloyd worked with a variety of filmmakers over the years, including appearing in Jean Renoir’s The Southerner, Charlie Chaplin’s Limelight, Scorsese’s The Age of Innocence, and Peter Weir’s Dead Poet’s Society. In 2015, he appeared in Amy Schumer’s Trainwreck.
He also directed several Broadway productions during his career, including Madam, Will You Walk (1953-1954), 1957’s The Golden Apple and 1957’s The Taming of the Shrew.
Lloyd’s impact in the television realm continued to resonate late into his career. From 1982-1988 he portrayed one of his most famous roles as Dr. Auschlander in St. Elsewhere. But his television work began decades prior. In 1939 he appeared in NBC’s The Streets of New York, and he continued to work steadily in television beginning in the Fifties. In the early Fifties, he directed a five-part miniseries about Abraham Lincoln for the TV anthology Omnibus, where Stanley Kubrick served as a second unit director in his first installment.
In 1957, Lloyd served as associate producer in Hitchcock’s television series, Alfred Hitchcock Presents and he also executive produced The Hitchcock Hour. He directed several episodes of both series as well as acted in them.
In the Sixties he produced and directed television, which he continued to do into the early Eighties. He was nominated for and won an Emmy for his work alongside other producers on the series The Name of the Game in 1970.
Lloyd’s late career TV appearances include Star Trek: the Next Generation, Wings, and The Practice. He served as a regular on Seven Days and in 2010, he appeared in an episode of ABC’s Modern Family.
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