Turhan Bey

Active - 1941 - 2007  |   Born - Mar 30, 1922 in Vienna  |   Died - Sep 30, 2012 in Vienna, Austria  |   Genres - Adventure, Action, Mystery, Drama, Spy Film

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Handsome, dapper leading man Bey was born Turhan Selahattin Sahultavy to a Turkish father and Czech mother in Vienna. He came to the U.S. in the '30s and studied acting at Ben Bard's School of Dramatic Arts and at the Pasadena Playhouse. With available actors depleted by World War Two, he began finding work in Hollywood in 1941, usually in exotic Arabian Nights-type films in which he co-starred with Maria Montez, Jon Hall, and Sabu. When that genre dried up in the late '40s, so did Bey's career, a problem exacerbated when he was called up for an extended term of military service; after 1950 he appeared in only one film, Prisoners of the Casbah (1953), and produced another, Stolen Identity (1953). Bey did become a well-respected photographer in his native Vienna, and he directed plays at the Marionette Theater in Salzburg.

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