Leander de Cordova

Active - 1919 - 1951  |   Born - Dec 5, 1877   |   Died - Sep 19, 1969   |   Genres - Drama, Mystery, Western, Crime, Romance

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Biography by Hans J. Wollstein

Born in Kingston, Jamaica, distinguished-looking Leander de Cordova began his screen career as an assistant director on such early dramas as the 1916 Francis X. Bushman version of Romeo and Juliet. He later co-directed, with producer G.B. Samuelson, the famous silent version of She (1925) starring Betty Blythe, and was solo director on silent screen actress Mary Philbin's final foray into sound films, the technically crude After the Fog (1929). Although he was credited as dialogue director on the 1930 Tiffany sound production Borrowed Wives and later helmed a cheap Buffalo Bill Jr. oater (Trail of the Golden West [1931]) for the small-scale studio Cosmos, talkies effectively put an end to de Cordova's directorial career. He spent the next two decades as an actor mostly playing bit parts, but remains very visible in two popular serials: Dick Tracy (1937) in which he played Stevens the dock superintendent and to an even higher degree Zorro's Fighting Legion as Felipe one of several imposing council members suspected of being the nefarious megalomaniac Don del Oro.

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