Warren Albert Stevens (November 2, 1919 – March 27, 2012) was an American stage, screen, and television actor.
Early life and career
Born in Clarks Summit, Pennsylvania, Stevens began his acting career after serving in the U.S. Army Air Force as a pilot during World War II. A founding member of The Actor's Studio in New York, Stevens received notice on Broadway in the late 1940s, and thereafter was offered a Hollywood contract at 20th Century Fox. His first Broadway role was in The Life of Galileo (1947) and first movie role followed in The Frogmen (1951). As a young studio contract player, Stevens had little choice of material, and he appeared in films that included Phone Call from a Stranger (1952), Wait Till the Sun Shines, Nellie (1952), and Gorilla at Large (1954). His most memorable movie role was probably that of the ill-fated "Doc" Ostrow in the science fiction film Forbidden Planet (1956). He also had a supporting role in The Barefoot Contessa (1954) with Humphrey Bogart.
Despite occasional parts in big films, Stevens was unable to break out consistently into A-list movies, so he carved out a career in television as a journeyman dramatic actor.
He co-starred as Lt. William Storm in Tales of the 77th Bengal Lancers (NBC, 1956–1957), a prime-time adventure series set in India. Stevens also provided the voice of John Bracken in season one of Bracken's World (NBC, 1968-1970).
He appeared in over 150 prime time shows from the 1950s to the early 1980s, including:
- Golden Age anthology series (Actors Studio, Campbell Playhouse, Justice, Philco Television Playhouse, Studio One, The United States Steel Hour, Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre, Route 66),
- Mysteries Hawaiian Eye (4 episodes), Perry Mason, The Untouchables, Climax!, Checkmate (2 episodes), Surfside 6 (2 episodes), 77 Sunset Strip (2 episodes), Behind Closed Doors, I Spy, The Man from U.N.C.L.E., Ironside (3 episodes), The Mod Squad, Cannon (3 episodes), Griff,
- Horror and Sci Fi Inner Sanctum (3 episodes), Alfred Hitchcock Presents (2 episodes), The Twilight Zone (episode "Dead Man's Shoes"), One Step Beyond (episode "The Riddle"), Mission: Impossible (4 episodes), The Outer Limits (episode Keeper of the Purple Twilight), Star Trek(episode By Any Other Name), Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea (3 episodes), The Time Tunnel, Science Fiction Theater, Land of the Giants (2 episodes)
- Comedies The Donna Reed Show (2 episodes, 1965 and 1966)
- Westerns (Laramie, The Rebel, Wagon Train (2 episodes), The Alaskans, Gunsmoke (3 episodes), Bonanza (4 episodes), Daniel Boone (3 episodes), The Virginian (3 episodes), Rawhide, and Have Gun, Will Travel (3 episodes)).
On November 24, 1959, Stevens guest starred as the corrupt James Hedrick in "Dark Verdict" of NBC's Laramie. In the episode, L. Q. Jones portrays John MacLane, a friend of series regular Jess Harper (Robert Fuller) who is falsely accused of murdering a doctor. MacLane is apprehended by a lynch mob led by Hedrick, a son of Judge Matthew Hedrick. Judge Hedrick, portrayed byThomas Mitchell, stacks the trial against MacLane, who is quickly convicted and hanged with no recourse for an appeal. The mob is then cleared in a trial before the circuit judge, with Judge Hedrick acting as their defense attorney. Walter Coy plays the prosecutor, and Harry Dean Stanton portrays Vern Cowan, the doctor's real killer.
Stevens' appearances on Have Gun, Will Travel introduced him to Richard Boone, who hired him for a continuing television role in The Richard Boone Show, an award-winning NBC anthology series which lasted for the 1963-1964 season. Stevens was also a close friend of actor Richard Basehart, and helped him through a nasty divorce in the early 1960s. Stevens guest starred on a few episodes of Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea. He would also have a supporting role on another Irwin Allen production; 1978's Return of Captain Nemo.
In his later years, Stevens' appearances were infrequent. He made a guest appearance on ER in March 2006 and had two roles in 2007.
Stevens died on March 27, 2012, from complications of lung disease in his home in Sherman Oaks, Los Angeles, California, he is survived by 3 children.