William Tannen

Active - 1934 - 1968  |   Died - Dec 2, 1976   |   Genres - Drama, Western, Action, Comedy, Musical

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The son of veteran vaudeville headliner Julius Tannen and the brother of actor Charles Tannen, William Tannen entered films as a Columbia contractee in 1934. Along with several other young stage-trained performers, Tannen was "discovered" by MGM in 1938's Dramatic School. During his subsequent years at MGM, he was briefly associated with three top comedy teams: He played Virginia Grey's brother in the Marx Brothers' The Big Store (1941), a Nazi flunkey in Laurel and Hardy's Air Raid Wardens (1943), and a "hard-boiled" assistant director in Abbott and Costello in Hollywood (1945). On TV, William Tannen was seen in the recurring role of Deputy Hal on the weekly Western Wyatt Earp (1955-1961).

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