In the 1930s, while studying at Princeton, Lex Barker dropped out to join a stock theater company--a situation that did not please his wealthy upper-class family. After some brief appearances on the stage throughout the decade, including a role in Orson Welles's flop "Five Kings," he was offered a contract by talent scouts from 20th Century-Fox in 1939; but being underage, he needed his parents to sign it. They refused. After being wounded in World War II, Barker ventured to Los Angeles and by 1945, appeared in his first film with a bit part in the musical comedy "Doll Face." Several other small roles followed, but in 1949 he had his biggest success when he became the 10th actor to play the character Tarzan in "Tarzan's Magic Fountain." Barker went on to star in five Tarzan films, and became one of the actors best known for the role. Playing the jungle man gave him opportunities to play more heroic roles in Westerns and war films, but by 1957 he was having difficulty finding work in the United States, so he moved to Europe. There, he became incredibly successful, starring in over 40 films. In Germany alone, he was such a big star he even recorded a single and was named Best Foreign Actor in 1966. He never returned to live in the United States, but continued to make occasional guest appearances on television here.