71 (passed away May. 15th, 1994)
Nov. 16th, 1922
New York City, New York, USA
Royal Dano's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles
Guest TV Roles[none found]
Royal Dano was undoubtedly one of the best, most quirky and striking character actors to ever grace the big and small screen alike in a lengthy and impressive career which spanned 42 years. Dano was born on November 22nd, 1922 in New York. He ran away from home at age 12 and lived in such states as Texas, Florida and California. He struck a deal with his father to continue his education, but still be able to travel around the country. Dano eventually attended New York University. His performing career began as part of the 44th Special Service Provisional Company during World War II. Dano soon branched out to the New York stage and made his Broadway debut with a small role in the hit musical "Finian's Rainbow." He was nominated by the New York Critic's Circle as one of the Promising Actors of 1949. Tall and lean, with a gaunt face, dark hair, a rangy build, and a very distinctive deep croaky voice, Dano was usually cast in both movies and TV shows as gloomy and/or sinister characters. He appeared most often in westerns and worked several times with James Stewart and director Anthony Mann. He made his film debut in "Undercover Girl." Dano's more memorable roles include the Tattered Soldier in "The Red Badge of Courage," a sickly bookworm bad guy in "Johnny Guitar," Elijah in "Moby Dick," Peter in "King of Kings," a cattle rustler in "The Culpepper Cattle Company," a coroner in "Electra Glide in Blue," a profanity-spewing preacher in "Big Bad Mama," Ten Spot in "The Outlaw Josey Wales," a weary factory line worker in "Take This Job and Shove It," a lightening rod salesman in "Something Wicked This Way Comes," a minister in "The Right Stuff," a stuffy high school teacher in "Teachers," rascally zombified old-timer Gramps in "House II: The Second Story," a cantankerous farmer in "Killer Klowns from Outer Space," and, in his last part, a cemetery caretaker in George Romero's "The Dark Half." Among the numerous TV shows Dano did guest spots on are "Twin Peaks," "Amazing Stories," "CHiPs," "Quincy M.E.," "Fantasy Island," "Little House on the Prairie," "Kung Fu," "Ben Casey," "Planet of the Apes," "Cannon," "Playhouse 90," "Lost in Space," "Gunsmoke," "Bonanza," "Wagon Train," "The Virginian," "Hawaii Five-O," "Alfred Hitchcock Presents," "Wanted; Dead or Alive," "Night Gallery," "Route 66," "The Rifleman," and "Rawhide." Moreover, Dano did the voice of the audioanimatronic Abraham Lincoln for Walt Disney's Hall of Presidents for both Disneyland and Disney World. Dano also portrayed Lincoln on the "Omnibus" television series. He's the father of actor Richard Dano. Royal Dano died at age 71 of a heart attack on May 15th, 1994.
- Was nominated by the New York Critic's Circle as one of the promising actors of 1949.
- Father of actor 'Rick Dano' (qv).
- Began his performing career as a part of the US Army's 44th Special Service Provisional Company during World War II.
- Dano provided the voice for Disney's audioanimatronic 'Abraham Lincoln (I)' (qv) in "Great Moments with Mister Lincoln," presented as part of the State of Illinois pavilion during the 1964-65 New York World's Fair. It was later turned into the Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln attraction at Disneyland. He was also voiced Lincoln for the Hall of Presidents at DisneyWorld. His voice is still in use today.
- Died in 1994 of a heart attack after a car accident. He was 71.
- Profiled in Names You Never Remember, With Faces You Never Forget by Justin Humphreys (BearManor Media).
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