58 (passed away Mar. 19th, 1974)
Feb. 14th, 1916
Staten Island, New York, USA
Edward Platt's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles1963 - Black Zoo
1962 - Cape Fear
1961 - Atlantis, the Lost Continent
1960 - Cash McCall
1960 - Pollyanna
1959 - North by Northwest
1959 - They Came to Cordura
1958 - Gunman's Walk
1957 - House of Numbers
1956 - Storm Center
1956 - Written on the Wind
1955 - Illegal
1955 - Rebel Without a Cause
1955 - Cult of the Cobra
1949 - I Was a Male War Bride
Guest TV Roles
John Wilbur Mason
Forever and fondly remembered as Don Adams (I)' foil on the popular Mel Brooks/Buck Henry spy series "Get Smart" (1965), character actor Ed Platt (also billed as Edward C. Platt) had been around for two decades prior to copping that rare comedy role. Born in Staten Island, New York, he inherited an appreciation of music on his mother's side. He spent a part of his childhood in Kentucky and in upstate New York where he attended Northwood, a private school in Lake Placid, and was a member of the ski jump team. He majored in romantic languages at Princeton University but left a year later to study at the Conservatory of Music in Cincinnati after his thoughts turned to a possible operatic career. He later was accepted into Juilliard.
Instead of opera, however, Ed first became a band vocalist with Paul Whiteman and Orchestra. He then sang bass as part of the Mozart Opera Company in New York. With the Gilbert and Sullivan Opera Company in 1942, he appeared in the operettas "The Mikado," "The Gondoliers" and "The Pirates of Penzance".
WWII interrupted his early career. Ed served as a radio operator with the army and would find himself on radio again in the post-war years where his deep, resonant voice proved ideal. A number of musical comedy roles also came his way again. In 1947, he made it to Broadway with the musical "Allegro." Star Josť Ferrer (I) took an interest in Ed while they both were appearing in "The Shrike" on Broadway in 1952. Around 1953, Edward moved to Texas to be near his brother and began anchoring the local news and kiddie birthday party show called "Uncle Eddie's Kiddie Party." Ferrer remembered Platt and invited him to Hollywood where Ferrer was starring in the film version of The Shrike (1955). Ed recreated his stage role. He also earned fine notices as James Dean (I)'s understanding juvenile officer in the classic film Rebel Without a Cause (1955). This led to a plethora of film and TV support offers where the balding actor made fine use of his dark, rich voice, stern intensity and pragmatic air, portraying a slew of professional and shady types in crime yarns, soap dramas and war pictures -- everything from principals and prosecutors to mobsters and murderers.
After years of playing it serious, which included stints on the daytime drama "General Hospital" (1963), Ed finally was able to focus on comedy as "The Chief" to Don Adams (I) klutzy secret agent on "Get Smart" (1965), a show that inevitably found a cult audience. Picking up a few occasional guest spots in its aftermath, he later tried producing. He was married twice and the father of four. He died in 1974 at the age of 58.
- Platt's death is somewhat of a mystery. For years it was reported he died from a heart attack at age 58. More recently it has been alleged (the information found on-line) that his son Jeff spoke out and stated in an interview that his father died as the result of suicide in 1974 after two previous attempts while suffering from an undiagnosed and untreated depression that was further sparked by financial troubles.
- Had one daughter by his first wife; two sons and a daughter by second wife Suzanne.
- Best remembered by the public for his starring role as the C.O.N.T.R.O.L. Chief in Get Smart (1965).
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