Job Actor, writer, producer, director
Years active 1934-96
Known for Brooklynesque gangsters (comic or serious)
Top Roles Harry the Horse, Nick, Grimes, Lt. Coyo, Lennie Garr
Top GenresComedy, Drama, Crime, Romance, Musical, Mystery
Top TopicsBook-Based, Screwball Comedy, Gangsters
Top Collaborators (Director), (Director), (Director), (Producer)
Shares birthday with Robert Young, George Haight, Fannie Ward  see more..

Sheldon Leonard Overview:

Character actor, Sheldon Leonard, was born Leonard Sheldon Bershad on Feb 22, 1907 in New York City, NY. Leonard died at the age of 89 on Jan 10, 1997 in Beverly Hills, CA .


Sheldon Leonard was an American actor of vaguely shifty looks, a 'Macdonald Carey from the other side of the tracks' and one of film's shadiest characters. Rarely seen without a trilby, his Brooklynesque gangsters were equally divided between the comic and the serious. He left acting all too soon to turn to production, but was seen in the late 1970s in a few cameo roles.


(Source: available at Amazon Quinlan's Illustrated Dictionary of Film Character Actors).



Leonard was inducted into the TV Hall of Fame .

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Sheldon Leonard Quotes:

Gus: I got an idea, boss.
Ace Miller: Brother, I need an idea to get out of this jam.
Gus: The cops find these two guys' bodies with a note pinned on 'em sayin' they committed suicide on account of they were so ashamed because they couldn't deliver a real zombie.
Ace Miller: Hey, that's a possibility!

Nick: [slamming a bottle on the bar] That's it! Out you two pixies go... through the door, or out the window!
George Bailey: Hold on, Nick! What's wrong?
Nick: That's another thing. Where do you come off calling me Nick?
George Bailey: Well... Nick, that's your name. Isn't it?
Nick: What does that have to do with anything? I don't know you from Adam's off Ox.

Camser: What kind of jungle is this?
Dalton Kraik: I don't know, but I could learn to like it. (Eats wild fruit off a bush) These things are looscious.
Camser: Looscious? You mean they're delicious.
Dalton Kraik: What's the difference? Either way, they're tasty.

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Sheldon Leonard Facts
Married to Frances Babor for 66 years. They had a son and daughter. Frances passed away two years later (1999) at age 91 and was buried beside Sheldon.

He said in an interview that the only reason he agreed to play Nick the bartender in the classic It's a Wonderful Life (1946) was so that he could buy Dodger baseball tickets.

1965: He cast Bill Cosby in the TV series "I Spy" (1965), making him one of TV's first black leading men.

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Television Hall of Fame

Also in the Television Hall of Fame

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