Harve Presnell

Singer, Actor
A tall (6'4"), imposing baritone with roots in the musical theater, Harve Presnell played the hubby of "The Unsinkable Molly Brown" on Broadway (1960), on tour (1962), and in the movie with Debbie Reynolds (1964). But ... Read more »
Born: 09/13/1933 in Modesto, California, USA

Filmography

Actor (52)

Glenn Martin, DDS 2010 (Tv Show)

Voice

Love Ranch 2010 (Movie)

Dr. Smathers (Actor)

Cold Case 2009 (Tv Show)

Actor

Andy Barker, P.I. 2006 - 2007 (TV Show)

Actor

Evan Almighty 2007 (Movie)

Congressman Burrows (Actor)

ER 2006 (Tv Show)

Actor

Flags of Our Fathers 2006 (Movie)

Dave Severance (Actor)

Monk 2005 (Tv Show)

Actor

Charmed 2004 (Tv Show)

Actor

Frasier 2003 (Tv Show)

Actor

Old School 2003 (Movie)

Mr Springbrook (Actor)

Strong Medicine 2003 (Tv Show)

Actor

Super Sucker 2003 (Movie)

Winslow Schnaebelt (Actor)

The Lyon's Den 2003 (Tv Show)

Actor

The Practice 2003 (Tv Show)

Actor

Mr. Deeds 2002 (Movie)

Blake (Actor)

The Pretender: The Island of the Haunted 2001 - 2002 (TV Show)

Actor

Walking Across Egypt 2001 - 2002 (TV Show)

Actor

Dawson's Creek 2000 - 2001 (Tv Show)

Actor

Escanaba in da Moonlight 2001 (Movie)

Albert Soady (Actor)

Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman 1995 - 1998, 2000 - 2001 (Tv Show)

Actor

Nash Bridges 1995 - 1998, 2000 - 2001 (Tv Show)

Actor

Star Trek: Voyager 1996 - 1998, 2000 - 2001 (Tv Show)

Actor

The Pretender 2001 2000 - 2001 (TV Show)

Actor

Two Guys, a Girl and a Pizza Place 1997 - 1998, 2000 - 2001 (Tv Show)

Actor

The Family Man 2000 (Movie)

Big Ed (Actor)

The Legend of Bagger Vance 2000 (Movie)

John Invergordon (Actor)

Payne 1998 - 1999 (TV Show)

Actor

George & Leo 1997 - 1998 (TV Show)

Actor

Patch Adams 1998 (Movie)

Dean Anderson (Actor)

Players 1997 - 1998 (TV Show)

Actor

Saving Private Ryan 1998 (Movie)

General Marshall (Actor)

Face/Off 1997 (Movie)

Lazzaro (Actor)

Julian Po 1997 (Movie)

Henry--Mayor (Actor)

Fargo 1996 (Movie)

Wade Gustafson (Actor)

John Grisham's The Client 1995 - 1996 (TV Show)

Actor

Larger Than Life 1996 (Movie)

Trowbridge Bowers (Actor)

The Chamber 1996 (Movie)

Attorney General Roxburgh (Actor)

The Whole Wide World 1996 (Movie)

Dr Howard (Actor)

Ryan's Hope 1974 - 1989 (TV Show)

Actor

Paint Your Wagon 1969 (Movie)

Rotten Luck Willie (Actor)

The Glory Guys 1964 (Movie)

Sol Rogers (Actor)

The Unsinkable Molly Brown 1964 (Movie)

Johnny Brown (Actor)

When the Boys Meet the Girls 1964 (Movie)

(Actor)

A Bright Shining Lie (TV Show)

Actor

Baitshop (TV Show)

Actor

Everything That Rises (TV Show)

Actor

From the Earth to the Moon (TV Show)

Actor

Life After Tomorrow (TV Show)

Actor

The Great Man's Whiskers (TV Show)

Actor

Tidal Wave: No Escape (TV Show)

Actor

Biography

A tall (6'4"), imposing baritone with roots in the musical theater, Harve Presnell played the hubby of "The Unsinkable Molly Brown" on Broadway (1960), on tour (1962), and in the movie with Debbie Reynolds (1964). But filmed musicals were on the wane, and he spent four decades on stage until such films as "Fargo" (1996) made him a viable character player of the big screen.

An operatic singer in the mold of Howard Keel, Presnell was performing throughout the country when composer Meredith Willson wrote the role of Johnny 'Leadville' Brown in "The Unsinkable Molly Brown" just for him. After earning kudos for his stage performance and his screen recreation, he seemed poised for a successful career. In 1965, he was cast alongside Liberace and the British rock group Herman's Hermits in "When the Boys Meet the Girls", a loose remake of the Gershwin musical "Girl Crazy" that was more showcase than movie; it died at the box office. But it was nothing compared with the misguided "Paint Your Wagon" (1969), which was a box office disaster. Presnell received good notices for his work, particularly for his rendition of "They Call the Wind Maria", but the film suffered from miscast leads (Jean Seberg, Lee Marvin and Clint Eastwood). The heyday of the Hollywood musical was nearly over and Presnell's feature career petered out.

Returning to the stage, Presnell appeared frequently in summer stock and on tour, playing roles like Frank Butler in numerous productions of Irving Berlin's "Annie, Get Your Gun". In 1979, he landed the role of Daddy Warbucks in the Broadway musical "Annie", and he later toured in the role, but lost the film version to Albert Finney. Presnell was tapped to reprise Warbucks in "Annie II: Miss Hannigan's Revenge" in 1990, but the show was plagued with problems and it never made it to New York. He also played Rhett Butler in a musical version of "Gone With the Wind" in London (Pernell Roberts had the dubious honor of appearing in the Los Angeles production.)

After more an absence of more than 25 years, Presnell was back in motion pictures. The Coen brothers cast him as an overbearing father-in-law whose stubborn streak costs him dearly in "Fargo" (1996). That same year, Presnell also co-starred opposite Bill Murray in "Larger Than Life", played the father of writer Robert E. Howard in "The Whole Wide World" (screened at the Sundance Film Festival) and portrayed the attorney general in James Foley's version of John Grisham's "The Chamber". Subsequent film roles have included 1997's "Face/Off", 1998's "Patch Adams" and "Saving Private Ryan" and 2000's "The Legend of Bagger Vance" and "Family Man".

Although he made some unsold pilots through the years, Presnell has rarely been seen on TV in dramatic roles. He played Matthew Crane on "Ryan's Hope" from 1984-85, during the waning days of the ABC soap opera. In 1995, he guest-starred on an episode of a dramatic primetime series for the first time with "John Grisham's The Client" (CBS). Also during the 1995-96 season, he played recurring role of Lois Lane's father in "Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman" (ABC).

Relationships

Sheri Presnell

Wife
Divorced

Veeva Presnell

Wife
Married from 1966 until his death in 2009

EDUCATION

University of Southern California

Los Angeles , California

Milestones

2007

Cast as Congressman Burrows in "Evan Almighty"

2007

Had a recurring role on NBC's "Andy Barker, P.I." as Lew Staziak

2001

Portrayed Joe Kennedy in the TV-movie "Jackie, Ethel, Joan: The Women of Camelot" (NBC)

2000

Co-starred with Nicholas Cage in "The Family Man" as Big Ed

2000

Had a recurring role on the WB's "Dawson's Creek" as Arthur Brooks

1998

"Saving Private Ryan" as Gen. George C. Marshall

1997

Played Mr. Parker on the NBC series "The Pretender"

1996

Returned to films, playing William H. Macy's father-in-law in "Fargo"

1995

Had recurring role as Lois' father on "Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman" (ABC)

1984

Cast on the ABC soap opera "Ryan's Hope"

1979

Appeared as Daddy Warbucks in the Broadway production of "Annie"; also toured with the production

1968

Featured in the disastrous big-screen musical "Paint Your Wagon"

1964

Made film debut reprising his role as Johnny Brown in "The Unsinkable Molly Brown"

1960

Broadway debut, "The Unsinkable Molly Brown"

1949

Made stage debut at age 16 singing in an opera

Bonus Trivia

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"I started as star, and now I have to climb the ladder again." - Presnell in USA Today, March 21, 1996

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On Broadway: "I'm not going back unless there's something exciting and new." - Presnell in USA Today, March 21, 1996

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