Leonard Stone (November 3, 1923 – November 2, 2011) was an American character actor who played supporting roles in over 120 television shows and 35 films.
Life and career
In 1961 and 1962, he was twice cast in different roles on ABC's The Real McCoys in the episodes "Money from Heaven" and "You Can't Beat the Army". Between 1962 and 1966, Stone made four guest appearances on CBS's Perry Mason. In his 1962 role, he played murderer Jerel Leland in "The Case of the Hateful Hero." In 1966, he had a supporting role as Morton on the short-lived CBS sitcom The Jean Arthur Show starring Jean Arthur and Ron Harper. He played popular and memorable characters on The Outer Limits, Lost in Space, and M*A*S*H. He appeared twice on ABC's The Donna Reed Show as Mr. Trestle in "The Good Guys and the Bad Guys" (1961) and as Harlan Carmody, Jr., in "Joe College" (1965).
In the 1965-1966 season, he appeared as Doc Joslyn in thirteen episodes of Camp Runamuck on NBC.
One of his most notable roles came in 1971, when he played Sam Beauregarde, the father of Golden Ticket winner Violet Beauregarde, in Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory. He was the last surviving parents from the movie.
Between 1988 and 1994, he was cast as Judge Paul Hanson in twelve episodes of the NBC legal drama L.A. Law.
Stone started his career as a young actor studying at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London. He performed in the West End, on Broadway, and toured the world. He traveled for eight years in Australia and New Zealand with the musical South Pacific. He was nominated for a Tony Award in 1959 for Best Supporting Actor in Redhead, a Bob Fosse musical. He also was in theTony Award-nominated cast of Look Homeward, Angel in 1957, which premiered at the Ethel Barrymore Theater in New York. Based on the Thomas Wolfe novel, it won a Pulitzer Prize.
Stone's final role came in 2006 at the age of 83, when he played a minor character in Surrender Dorothy.
He died on November 2, 2011 in Encinitas, California, after a brief bout with cancer, one day shy of his 88th birthday.
Stone married Carole Kleinman in 1964, and together they raised four children and eight grandchildren. In 1983, Stone moved to San Diego from his longtime home in Los Angeles, but continued to commute for work.
Stone was a contestant on an episode of Wheel of Fortune which aired September 22, 2000. He placed second, winning $4,250 in cash and a trip to Bermuda valued at $5,310.
In the early 1950s, Stone began writing a children's story about a kangaroo who never grew. In 2011, Keepy was published on Kindle and Nook.