Warren Hull

Active - 1935 - 2015  |   Born - Jan 17, 1903   |   Died - Sep 14, 1974   |   Genres - Drama, Comedy, Crime, Adventure, Action

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Biography by Hal Erickson

American actor Warren Hull left New York University to study voice and pursue a career in light operas and operettas. In 1935 Hull was signed to a contract by Warner Bros., and spent the next few years playing vapid leading men in such forgettables as Miss Pacific Fleet (1935) and Bengal Tiger (1936). His best film of this period was The Walking Dead (1936), though he and the rest of the cast were overshadowed by back-from-the-dead Boris Karloff. Hull left Warners for less money but larger parts in small-budget films, excelling as a serial hero. As the titular Mandrake the Magician (1939), Hull was impressively decked out in top hat and tails as he battled a disguised criminal called The Wasp, while in The Green Hornet Strikes Again (1941) Hull donned a disguise himself to battle crime. Perhaps his best serial appearance was in The Spider's Web (1938) in which he assumed three guises: the business-suited hero; the caped and cloaked Spider; and a lowlife information-gatherer with misshapen teeth named Blinky. As good film roles became scarce, Hull returned to radio announcing, which he'd been doing off and on since 1923. Throughout the '40s he popped up with frequency on such programs as The Hit Parade and Vox Pop. TV viewers of the '50s and '60s, as yet unfamiliar with old movie serials, knew Warren Hull only as the garrulous host of such programs as Strike it Rich and Who In the World.

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