Leo White Overview:

Character actor, Leo White, was born on Nov 10, 1873 in Graudenz, West Prussia. White died at the age of 74 on Sep 20, 1948 in Glendale, CA .

Leo White was born on November 10th, 1882 in Graudenz, Germany. As a young child, he moved with his family in England. He began his career in show business in the late 1890s doing comedy routines in music halls. He made his way to America in 1910, accompany his Daniel Frohman, well know Broadway producer. A year later White entered the film industry and in 1913 signed a contract with the Chicago based Essanay Studios. While there, he continued to work in the genre of comedy, often as a supporting player to Charlie Chaplin. He then followed Chaplin to Mutual Studios, where he not worked in comedy but also began playing dapper villains and pompous aristocrats, often of French background.

White would eventually remain type casted as the villain or continental nobleman for the rest of his career. Some of his more successful titles include the 1922's Blood and Sand starring Rudolph Valentino and Ben Hur: A Tale of the Christ with Ramon Novarro. Unlike most silent actors of his day, White managed to make the successful leap to silent era to talkies and was features in the Marx brothers film Monkey Business and A Night at the Opera. His final film with Chaplin was 1940's The Great Dictator in 1940. He continued to work in film into the late 1940's, his roles mostly uncredited. His final film was as an extra in the big screen adaptation of the Ayn Rand novel The Fountainhead. By the time of his death, he had appeared in over 400 films - many uncredited. Leo White died on September 20th, 1948. He was 74 years old. 

(Source: article by Minoo Allen for Classic Movie Hub).



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Leo White Facts
Played a wax-moustached villain in early silent movies, including some of the very first Charlie Chaplin shorts.

He had a personal log that indicated that he had worked in almost 2,000 films by the late 1930s, most not credited or recorded.

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