The son of famed Yiddish actor Maurice Moscovitch (1871-1940), Noel Madison was educated at the University of Laussane in Switzerland and Loudoun House in London. At first billed as Nat Madison, he established his reputation on Broadway as an actor and director. In films from 1930, he was usually cast as a smooth-talking gangster. He left Hollywood in 1937 for a brief sojourn to England, where he was prominently featured in three Jessie Mathews musicals. Once back in America, it was business as usual for Madison, who returned to screen villainy. During World War II, the actor's unique facial features permitted him to play both German and Japanese bad guys. One of Noel Madison's rare sympathetic roles was Carl Rothschild in the 1934 George Arliss vehicle House of Rothschild.