• 23 June 1889
  •  Brooklyn, New York, USA

Donald MacBride


Best known for his work in slapstick comedy and detective whodunits, character actor Donald MacBride lent his serious, craggy mug and determined professionalism to scores of 30s and 40s crimers. Born in Brooklyn, he first appeared on the vaudeville and Broadway stages as a teenage singer in such shows as "George White's Scandals" and "Room Service." Taking a chance on Hollywood, he appeared in a few silents, then returned full time to films again in the 30s with a variety of interesting parts in over 100 comedies and dramas. These included the movie version of Room Service (1938) with the Marx Brothers, the flustered hotel manager in My Favorite Wife (1940), an ex-con and ringleader in High Sierra (1941) and an Irish politico in The Dark Horse (1946). However, his real prowess was playing by-the-book police inspectors and, while looking slightly less capable when at odds with a Charlie Chan, a Michael Shayne, or the Saint, he came off much more capable on his own in tracking down such hardened criminals as The Creeper. In the 50s he turned to TV as well, until his death in 1957.