From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
|Born||April 5, 1912|
Alden, Iowa, U.S.
|Died||June 20, 1963 (aged 51)|
Tarzana, California, U.S.
|Alma mater||University of California at Los Angeles|
|Spouse(s)||Lucile Van Winkle (1935–1940)|
Gordon Wynnivo Jones (April 5, 1912 – June 20, 1963) was an American character actor, a member of John Wayne's informal acting company best known for playing Lou Costello's TV nemesis "Mike the Cop" and appearing as The Green Hornet in the first of two movie serials based on that old-time radio program.
Iowa-born Jones had been a student athlete and star football guard ("Bull" Jones) at University of California, Los Angeles, and had also played a few seasons of professional football. He started out playing small roles in Wesley Ruggles' and Ernest B. Schoedsack's The Monkey's Paw (1933), his first credited role in Sam Wood's Let 'Em Have It (1935), and Sidney Lanfield's Red Salute (1935). By 1937, he had moved on to a contract at RKO Radio Pictures. In 1940, Jones had the title role in The Green Hornet but did not reprise the role in the sequel.
Jones held a reserve commission in the Army and was called into the service after filming his roles as "The Wreck" in My Sister Eileen (1942) and "Alabama Smith" in Flying Tigers (1942), a John Wayne vehicle that was one of the most popular action films of the war. This picture began Jones' 20-year onscreen association with Wayne, who was also a former football player at the University of Southern California.
Jones remained associated with the service after the war, encouraging college students to consider the Reserve Officers' Training Corps. After resuming his acting career in the late 1940s, Jones appeared in prominent roles in the John Wayne features Big Jim McLain (1952) and Island in the Sky (1953).
By the end of the 1940s, Jones had aged into a beefier screen presence and into very physical character roles. He was no longer a leading man but he had developed a comic villain persona which meshed with the work of Bud Abbott and Lou Costello. Jones' association with the duo began in The Wistful Widow of Wagon Gap (1947) with the role of the film's heavy, Jake Frame, and continued through their television series The Abbott and Costello Show. Jones played "Mike the Cop", Costello's hulking, loud-voiced antagonist. The program was produced for only two seasons, but ensured continued recognition for Jones via frequent reruns and a 21st Century DVD release.
Jones also remained busy in films and on television throughout the 1950s, in pictures that ranged from the sci-fi chiller The Monster That Challenged the World to the Tony Curtis/Janet Leigh sex comedy The Perfect Furlough, and on TV series ranging from The Real McCoys to The Rifleman. In 1956 Jones appeared as C. R. Tatum in the western TV series Cheyenne on the episode titled "The Last Train West." Jones also appeared in two very successful Disney movies during the early '60s, The Absent-Minded Professor and Son of Flubber. He played harried school coaches in both pictures. He also starred with Mitzi Green and Virginia Gibson in the short-lived TV sitcom So This Is Hollywood (1955), and had a recurring role as neighbor Butch Barton during the early years of The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet
Jones returned to the John Wayne stock company portraying Douglas, the bureaucrat antagonist to Wayne's G.W. McLintock in the Western comedy McLintock! (1963). Jones unexpectedly succumbed to a heart attack on June 12, 1963, five months before the release of that movie.
Jones has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on the West side of the 1600 block of Vine Street.
- Cimarron (1931) - Teamster (uncredited)
- Wild Girl (1932) - Vigilante (uncredited)
- The Monkey's Paw (1933) - Soldier (uncredited)
- Car 99 (1935) - Mechanic (uncredited)
- Let 'Em Have It (1935) - Tex
- Red Salute (1935) - Michael (Lefty) Jones
- Strike Me Pink (1936) - Butch Carson
- Captain Calamity (1936) - Henchman (uncredited)
- Devil's Squadron (1936) - Tex
- Walking on Air (1936) - Joe
- Don't Turn 'Em Loose (1936) - Joe Graves
- Night Waitress (1936) - Martin Rhodes
- We Who Are About to Die (1937) - Slim Tolliver
- They Wanted to Marry (1937) - Jim
- Sea Devils (1937) - Puggy
- China Passage (1937) - Joe Dugan
- There Goes My Girl (1937) - Reporter Dunn
- Forlorn River (1937) - Lem Watkins (uncredited)
- The Big Shot (1937) - Chester 'Chet' Scott
- Fight for Your Lady (1937) - Mike Scanlon
- Quick Money (1937) - Bill Adams
- Night Spot (1938) - Riley
- Rich Man, Poor Girl (1938) - Tom Grogan
- I Stand Accused (1938) - Blackie
- Out West with the Hardys (1938) - Ray Holt
- Long Shot (1939) - Jeff Clayton
- Pride of the Navy (1939) - Joe Falcon
- Big Town Czar (1939) - Chuck Hardy (uncredited)
- Invitation to Happiness (1939) - Dutch Arnold (uncredited)
- Grand Jury Secrets (1939) - Billy Hargraves (uncredited)
- When Tomorrow Comes (1939) - Radio Technician (uncredited)
- Disputed Passage (1939) - Bill Anderson
- Henry Goes Arizona (1939) - Tug Evans (uncredited)
- The Green Hornet (1940, Serial) - Britt Reid / The Green Hornet
- The Doctor Takes a Wife (1940) - O'Brien
- I Take This Oath (1940) - Steve Hanagan
- Up in the Air (1940) - Tex
- Girl from Havana (1940) - Tubby Waters
- Texas Rangers Ride Again (1940) - Ranger Radio Man (uncredited)
- Reaching for the Sun (1941) - Sailor (uncredited)
- The Blonde from Singapore (1941) - 'Waffles' Billings
- You Belong to Me (1941) - Robert Andrews
- The Feminine Touch (1941) - Rubber-Legs Ryan
- Among the Living (1941) - Bill Oakley
- True to the Army (1942) - Pvt. Dugan
- To the Shores of Tripoli (1942) - Military Policeman at Main Gate (uncredited)
- They All Kissed the Bride (1942) - Taxi Driver (uncredited)
- My Sister Eileen (1942) - 'The Wreck' Loomis
- Highways by Night (1942) - 'Footsy' Fogarty
- Flying Tigers (1942) - Alabama Smith
- Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo (1944)
- Buffalo Bill (1944) - Trooper (uncredited)
- Youth Runs Wild (1944) - Truck Driver (uncredited)
- Wanderer of the Wasteland (1945) - Sheriff (uncredited)
- The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (1947) - Tubby Wadsworth
- The Wistful Widow of Wagon Gap (1947) - Jake Frame
- A Foreign Affair (1948) - Military Policeman
- Sons of Adventure (1948) - Andy Baldwin
- Black Eagle (1948) - Benjy Laughton
- The Untamed Breed (1948) - Happy Keegan
- Take Me Out to the Ball Game (1949) - Senator Catcher (uncredited)
- Mr. Soft Touch (1949) - Muggles (uncredited)
- Easy Living (1949) - Bill Holloran
- Black Midnight (1949) - Roy
- Tokyo Joe (1949) - Idaho
- Dear Wife (1949) - Taxi Cab Driver
- Bodyhold (1949) - Pat Simmons
- Belle of Old Mexico (1950) - Tex Barnet
- The Palomino (1950) - Bill Hennessey
- The Arizona Cowboy (1950) - I.Q. Barton
- Trigger, Jr. (1950) - Splinters McGonagle
- Big Timber (1950) - Jocko
- Sunset in the West (1950) - Splinters McGonagle
- North of the Great Divide (1950) - Splinters McGonigle
- Trail of Robin Hood (1950) - Splinters McGonigle
- Spoilers of the Plains (1951) - Splinters McGonigle
- Heart of the Rockies (1951) - Splinters McGonigle
- Corky of Gasoline Alley (1951) - Elwood Martin
- Yellow Fin (1951) - Breck
- The Marrying Kind (1952) - Steve (uncredited)
- Gobs and Gals (1952) - CPO Mike Donovan
- Sound Off (1952) - Sgt. Crockett
- The Winning Team (1952) - George Glasheen
- Big Jim McLain (1952) - Olaf
- Wagon Team (1952) - Marshal Sam Taplin
- Woman They Almost Lynched (1953) - Yankee Sergeant
- Island in the Sky (1953) - Walrus
- Take the High Ground! (1953) - Moose (uncredited)
- The Outlaw Stallion (1954) - Wagner
- Treasure of Ruby Hills (1955) - Jack Voyle
- Smoke Signal (1955) - Cpl. Rogers
- Spring Reunion (1957) - Jack Frazer
- Shoot-Out at Medicine Bend (1957) - Pvt. Wilbur 'Will' Clegg
- The Monster That Challenged the World (1957) - Sheriff Josh Peters
- Live Fast, Die Young (1958) - Pop Winters
- The Perfect Furlough (1958) - 'Sylvia', MP #1
- The Shaggy Dog (1959) - Captain Scanlon, Police Chief
- Battle Flame (1959) - Sgt. McKelvey
- The Big Fisherman (1959) - Minor Role (uncredited)
- Battle of the Coral Sea (1959) - Torpedoman Bates
- The Rise and Fall of Legs Diamond (1960) - Sgt. Joe Cassidy
- Master of the World (1961) - Rutland Basketball Coach (uncredited)
- Son of Flubber (1963) - Rutland Coach (uncredited)
- McLintock! (1963) - Matt Douglas (final film role)
- "Famous Iowans - Gordon Jones | DesMoinesRegister.com". data.desmoinesregister.com.
- "Hollywood Gossip Covers Very Wide Field, It Seems". St. Petersburg (Fla.) Evening Independent. February 22, 1940. p. 8. Retrieved 10 July 2016.
- Longden, Tom. "Famous Iowans - Gordon Jones". demoinesregister.com. Des Moines Register. Retrieved 10 July 2016.
- Lidz, Franz (January 7, 2011). "Float Like a Franchise, Sting Like a ..." New York Times. Retrieved 2011-01-10.
- "The Green Hornet". DVD Talk. Retrieved 2011-03-28.
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 4.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.