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Theodore Strauss

Theodore Strauss

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Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Robert Strauss is an animal. Or rather, the "Animal" of Billy Wilder's subversive 1953 World War II POW yarn, "Stalag 17." Distinguished by his deep baritone croak, Strauss originated that role on Broadway several years before reprising it in Wilder's famous adaptation. Though he performed odd jobs throughout much of his young life, it was in the theater that Strauss finally found a home. The son of a costume designer, he took to the stage as a classical actor, performing the works of Shakespeare during the '30s. Strauss enjoyed only middling success until the following decade, however, when film roles began to materialize for him. He made his Hollywood debut in the 1942 Bill of Rights docudrama "Native Land," but true stardom would not be his until "Stalag." The role gained Strauss widespread recognition, including an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor. He went on to become one of the most recognizable faces of the '50s, popping up in TV and film roles alike. He appeared again under the direction of Wilder in his 1955 Marilyn Monroe comedy, "The Seven Year Itch," this time as Mr. Kruhulik, a gawking janitor. The character actor had the opportunity to work with other legendary...

Robert Strauss is an animal. Or rather, the "Animal" of Billy Wilder's subversive 1953 World War II POW yarn, "Stalag 17." Distinguished by his deep baritone croak, Strauss originated that role on Broadway several years before reprising it in Wilder's famous adaptation. Though he performed odd jobs throughout much of his young life, it was in the theater that Strauss finally found a home. The son of a costume designer, he took to the stage as a classical actor, performing the works of Shakespeare during the '30s. Strauss enjoyed only middling success until the following decade, however, when film roles began to materialize for him. He made his Hollywood debut in the 1942 Bill of Rights docudrama "Native Land," but true stardom would not be his until "Stalag." The role gained Strauss widespread recognition, including an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor. He went on to become one of the most recognizable faces of the '50s, popping up in TV and film roles alike. He appeared again under the direction of Wilder in his 1955 Marilyn Monroe comedy, "The Seven Year Itch," this time as Mr. Kruhulik, a gawking janitor. The character actor had the opportunity to work with other legendary performers as well, and played the shady Schwiefka opposite Frank Sinatra in "The Man with the Golden Arm" the same year. Strauss showed up on countless TV staples in the '60s, including the classic sitcom "Bewitched" as a crooked P.I.

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CAST: (feature film)

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