Sam Jaffe (actor)
name = Sam Jaffe
birthname = Shalom Jaffe
birthdate = birth date|1891|3|10
New York, New York, U.S.
deathdate = death date and age|1984|3|24|1891|3|10 (cancer)
Beverly Hills, California, U.S.
restingplace = Eden Memorial Park
Mission Hills, California, U.S.
restingplacecoordinates = coord|34.2825|-118.4658|display=inline,title
othername = Sam C. Jaffe
occupation = Actor
yearsactive = 1934 - 1984
spouse = Lillian Taiz
(1926-1941) (her death)
(1956-1984) (his death)
Sam Jaffe (
March 10, 1891– March 24, 1984) was an American actor, teacher and engineer. In 1951, he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actorfor his performance in " The Asphalt Jungle" (1950) and appeared in other classic films such as "Ben-Hur" (1959) and "The Day the Earth Stood Still" (1951). He may be best remembered for playing the title role in "Gunga Din" (1939), and the High Lama in the 1937 version of "Lost Horizon".
Born to a
Jewish family in New York City, New York, as a child he appeared in Yiddishtheater productions with his mother Ada Jaffe, who was a prominent actress and vaudeville star. He studied engineering at Columbia Universityand then worked for several years as a math teacher before turning to acting as a career. He began to work in film in 1934 and continued for the rest of his life.
For a time during the 1950s, Jaffe was blacklisted by the
Hollywood movie studiobosses, supposedly for being a Communist sympathizer. Despite this, he was hired by director William Wylerfor his role in the 1959 Academy Awardwinning version of ""Ben-Hur".
Jaffe co-starred in the American
TVseries " Ben Casey" as Dr. David Zorba from 1961 to 1965 and had many guest starring roles on other series, including the western " Alias Smith and Jones" starring Pete Dueland Ben Murphy.
Jaffe married American operatic soprano and musical comedy star Lillian Taiz in 1926 and they were married until her death from cancer in 1941. In 1956, he married actress
Bettye Ackerman, who later also starred with him in "Ben Casey". She died on November 20 2006. He had no children from either marriage.
Sam Jaffe died of
cancerin Beverly Hills, Californiaand was interred in Eden Memorial Park Cemeteryin Los Angeles, California.
The Scarlet Empress" (1934)
* "We Live Again" (1934)
* "Lost Horizon" (1937)
* "Gunga Din" (1939)
13 Rue Madeleine" (1947)
Gentleman's Agreement" (1947)
* "The Accused" (1949)
Rope of Sand" (1949)
The Asphalt Jungle" (1950)
* "Under the Gun" (1951)
* "I Can Get It for You Wholesale" (1951)
* "The Day the Earth Stood Still" (1951)This six-year gap in his work was due to him being blacklisted.
* "The Spies" (1957)
The Barbarian and the Geisha" (1958)
* "Ben-Hur" (1959)
* "A Guide for the Married Man" (1967)
Tarzan's Jungle Rebellion" (1967)
Guns for San Sebastian" (1968)
* "The Great Bank Robbery" (1969)
* "The Dunwich Horror" (1969)
* "Quarantined" (TV, 1970)
* "The Old Man Who Cried Wolf" (TV, 1970)
Bedknobs and Broomsticks" (1971)
* "The Tell-Tale Heart" (1971)
* "Enemies" (TV, 1971)
* "Ghost Story" (TV, 1972)
* "Saba of Sonora" (TV, 1973)
* "Columbo: Forgotten Lady" (TV, 1975)
* "Gideon's Trumpet" (TV, 1980)
Battle Beyond the Stars" (1980)
* "Rio Abajo" (1984)
* "Nothing Lasts Forever" (1984)
Ben Casey" (series, 1961-1965)
* "QB VII" (miniseries, 1974)
Alias Smith and Jones" (1971-1972)
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