Stephen McNally

Active - 1948 - 1977  |   Born - Jul 29, 1913 in New York, NY  |   Died - Jun 4, 1994 in Beverly Hills, CA  |   Genres - Drama, Action, Western, Crime, Thriller

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Biography by Hal Erickson

Former lawyer Stephen McNally was pushing 30 when he made his first film appearance. As an MGM contract player in 1942 and 1943, McNally acted under his given first name of "Horace," playing antiseptic leading men in such lower-berth efforts as Grand Central Murder (1942) and Laurel and Hardy's Air Raid Wardens (1943). His career took a tremendous upswing when he changed from "Horace" to "Stephen," simultaneously coarsening his screen image. His hateful villains in such films as Johnny Belinda (1948) and Winchester 73 (1950) are among the most indelible bad-guy performances in cinema history. There were times that McNally showed up in a heroic role, but his fan following was seldom satisfied unless their idol was seen scowling at the heroine or threatening to kick the teeth out of the juvenile lead. On television, Stephen McNally starred in the 1961 TV series Target: The Corruptors and made occasional appearances as a TV-network chairman of the board in the 1978 weekly W.E.B..

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