Fredric March was a great American actor in the 1930s. He was one of the most acclaimed stars of the time. His career spanned the decade, and he was versatile in his roles.
Fredric March was a distinguished actor of both stage and cinema. He was a talented, classically trained performer who made his mark with a range of memorable roles. But his career faltered in the 1960s.
March’s early life was not easy. His father ran a wholesale hardware business, and his mother was a schoolteacher. In addition to his acting, March was also active in Democratic Party politics. While in the army, he served as an artillery lieutenant during World War I.
When he returned from the war, March decided to pursue a career as an actor. He had a chance to work as an extra in a New York film. Then, he found himself starring in a light comedy. This led to a full-time acting career.
By the mid-1930s, he had starred in a series of classic films based on stage hits. These included ‘The Barretts of Wimpole Street’, ‘Death Takes a Holiday’, ‘Les Miserables’, ‘A Star Is Born’, ‘Nothing Sacred’, ‘Bedtime Story’, and ‘I Married a Witch’.
When March became an extra in some New York movies, he met actress Florence Eldridge. They began a long-term relationship that would last until March’s death from prostate cancer in 1975. Both of them were devoted to each other. Throughout their marriage, they adopted two children together.
Throughout his career, March was able to keep his body in shape by swimming, riding horses, and keeping fit with tennis. Even as his fame faded in the 1950s, he still kept in touch with his acting roots.
He had an intense passion for performing. During his years on the stage, he received considerable acclaim. He also was a fan of reading and photography. And he even volunteered for the USO in 1943. A few years later, President John F. Kennedy invited him to read the Gettysburg Address at the 150th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s birth.
For the rest of his career, March alternated between Hollywood and the stage. It was during this time that he was able to build a reputation as a prestigious theatrical team.
March won two Academy Awards. One was for his role as John Barrymore in ‘The Royal Family of Broadway’, which was filmed at Astoria Studios in New York.
Fredric March was an American actor who starred in more than sixty movies. He also worked in television and Broadway theater. A handsome, talented actor, March had an eloquent, classically trained voice. His performances in a variety of films and plays ranged from romantic leads to satirical comedies. He won two Oscars and was nominated for four more.
Born in Wisconsin in 1897, March moved to New York to pursue his career. After graduating from the University of Wisconsin with a degree in economics, he served as an artillery lieutenant in the United States Army during World War I. In 1920, he began acting as an extra in silent films in New York. Later, he made his film debut in ‘The Great Adventure’ (1921) starring Lionel Barrymore.
During the late 1920s, March made several appearances on the stage. This was where he first met his second wife, Florence Eldridge. They married in Mexico in 1927. The couple remained married for 47 years. Eventually, they adopted two children together.
March branched out into television and theater during the late 1940s and 1950s. Although his career faltered during this period, he stayed active in the screen acting arena for the remainder of his life. As a result, he acted in many different roles and appeared in some of the classic films of the 1930s and 40s.
During the early part of his career, March played bit roles in east coast films and on Broadway. Eventually, he moved to Hollywood. During this period, he adapted quickly to the change from silent films to talking ones. By 1929, he had made his first talking picture.
March received his first Academy Award nomination in 1931 for the screen adaptation of George S. He was awarded his second Oscar in 1946 for The Best Years of Our Lives. However, his film career began to sputter in the 1960s. Despite his success as a character actor, March was still not receiving a lot of positive attention from critics.
The rest of his acting career saw him making occasional guest appearances on television and playing supporting roles in several films. Nonetheless, he was nominated for an Emmy Award in 1954 for his performance as ‘The Royal Family’ in ‘The Best of Broadway.
Ku Klux Klan membership
The University of Wisconsin renamed two theaters in recognition of Fredric March. However, the University of Virginia removed the name of March after the Charlottesville white supremacist march.
As the controversy over the naming of theaters raged, UW-Madison’s Union Council considered community feedback. The students, faculty, and alumni were asked to submit input regarding the name change. After studying the matter for two days, the council decided to remove the name.
This move was a response to students’ concerns. They were concerned that the UW honorary society branded as the Ku Klux Klan was connected to the national Klan. Students did not think the group should have an affiliate on campus. In addition, the campus honorary society was a non-tradition and bound to contain all positions on the racial enlightenment spectrum.
The yearbook page featured an image of the Klan. The motto and shield of the organization were on the page.
Although the Klan is not the “sinister” name of a college society, some were known by ghoulish names. Some societies wore names like Skull & Bones.
It’s possible that March knew the Ku Klux Klan through Birth of a Nation. In fact, March was invited to join several honor societies. But he did not seek to be distinguished. He was a staunch Liberal who believed in racial justice.
During his years at UW-Madison, March was a member of the “Klu” Klux Klan. But, the student group did not actually have a connection to the national Ku Klux Klan.
A study conducted by the University of Wisconsin-Madison found that the yearbook page was not the only “moment” for March. His civil rights career was also acknowledged.
There was no investigation into his racial activism. But, the UW’s Union Council took into account his involvement with the Ku Klux Klan.
The New York Times weighed in on the issue. In a column titled “UW-Madison’s Legacy of Fredric March,” Rebecca Blank outlined the reasons behind the renaming. She noted that the Klan is now diminished.
Fredric March was a prominent actor. When he died in 1975, he was buried under a favorite tree on his family’s New Milford farm.
Death of a Salesman
Death of a Salesman is a play that has been tackled by many actors over the years. The play is a powerful indictment of American values. It explores three important themes: denial, failure, and the power of dreams.
When he’s not in the theatre, Willy Loman is a middle-class, traveling salesman. He’s about to lose his job, and he’s struggling to make peace with his family. But, his own life is falling apart.
Death of a Salesman was based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning play by Arthur Miller. This iconic play has been tackled by some of the biggest names in theatrical history. In the past few years, Death of a Salesman has been revived on stage, and it is a popular choice with audiences.
In the play, Willy Loman tries to make peace with his wife Linda. As he tries to reach out to her, he begins to lose touch with reality.
When the play opens, Willy Loman is sixty-three years old. A commercial traveler tells him that buyers are dying off. Willy is ashamed of his inability to pay his bills. However, he still believes that charm will make him rich.
Fredric March played Willy in the film. He received an Oscar nomination for his performance, and he won a Best Actor Award at the Venice Film Festival.
Dustin Hoffman and Kate Reid also reprised their roles in the film. They both won an Academy Award, and Hoffman also received a Golden Globe.
John Malkovich was nominated for two Screen Actors Guild Awards, and he was nominated for a BAFTA. He was also nominated for the Golden Globe for his role as Biff.
Brian Dennehy has starred in many films. He was nominated for a Tony Award, and he starred in the third Broadway revival of Death of a Salesman in 1999.
For those looking to watch the movie, there are DVDs available. You can get a copy on paper sleeves or you can get a DVD-R. There are also several resources available to help you enjoy the play.
One of the most compelling qualities of the Death of a Salesman is the creative use of shadow and light. Director Mike Nichols used original set design in his revival of the play.