Ralph Meeker

Actor, Producer, Stage manager
Rugged, no-nonsense character actor (usually in action films) who made his screen debut in 1951; memorable as Mike Hammer in the Robert Aldrich classic, "Kiss Me Deadly" (1955).
Born: 11/20/1920 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA

Filmography

Actor (41)

Without Warning 1980 (Movie)

Dave (Actor)

The Alpha Incident 1978 (Movie)

(Actor)

The Hi-Riders 1978 (Movie)

(Actor)

Winter Kills 1978 (Movie)

Gameboy Baker (Actor)

The Food Of The Gods 1976 (Movie)

Bensington (Actor)

Brannigan 1975 (Movie)

Captain Moretti (Actor)

The Dead Don't Die 1974 - 1975 (TV Show)

Actor

Johnny Firecloud 1974 (Movie)

(Actor)

Night Games 1973 - 1974 (TV Show)

Actor

Birds of Prey 1972 - 1973 (TV Show)

Actor

The Police Story 1972 - 1973 (TV Show)

Actor

You'll Never See Me Again 1972 - 1973 (TV Show)

Actor

Angela 1972 (Movie)

Ben Hoeksema (Actor)

The Night Stalker 1971 - 1972 (TV Show)

Actor

The Happiness Cage 1971 (Movie)

Major (Actor)

I Walk the Line 1970 (Movie)

(Actor)

The Anderson Tapes 1970 (Movie)

Captain Delaney (Actor)

Gentle Ben 1967 - 1969 (TV Show)

Actor

The Detective 1968 (Movie)

Curran (Actor)

The Dirty Dozen 1967 (Movie)

Captain Stuart Kinder (Actor)

The St. Valentine's Day Massacre 1967 (Movie)

George "Bugsy" Moran (Actor)

Gentle Giant 1966 (Movie)

Fog Hanson (Actor)

Alfred Hitchcock Presents 1955 - 1965 (TV Show)

Actor

Ada 1961 (Movie)

Colonel Yancey (Actor)

Something Wild 1960 (Movie)

Mike (Actor)

The Lux Video Theater 1950 - 1960 (TV Show)

Actor

Jane Wyman Presents the Fireside Theater 1954 - 1958 (TV Show)

Actor

Paths of Glory 1958 (Movie)

Corporal Paris (Actor)

Run of the Arrow 1957 (Movie)

Lieutenant Driscoll (Actor)

The Fuzzy Pink Nightgown 1957 (Movie)

Mike Valla (Actor)

Big House, U.S.A. 1955 (Movie)

Jerry Barker (Actor)

Desert Sands 1955 (Movie)

David Malcolm (Actor)

Kiss Me Deadly 1955 (Movie)

Mike Hammer (Actor)

Jeopardy 1953 (Movie)

Lawson (Actor)

The Naked Spur 1953 (Movie)

Roy Anderson (Actor)

Cry Panic (TV Show)

Actor

Glory Alley (Movie)

Socks Barbarrosa (Actor)

Shadow in the Sky (Movie)

Burt (Actor)

Teresa (TV Show)

Actor

The Reluctant Heroes (TV Show)

Actor

Biography

Rugged, no-nonsense character actor (usually in action films) who made his screen debut in 1951; memorable as Mike Hammer in the Robert Aldrich classic, "Kiss Me Deadly" (1955).

Relationships

Ralph Rathgeber

Father

Magnhild Senovia Haavig Meeker Rathgeber

Mother

Salome Jens

Wife
co-starred together in the stage production of "After the Fall" in NYC married on July 20, 1964 divorced in 1966

Colleen Meeker

Wife

EDUCATION

Northwestern University

Evanston , Illinois 1938 - 1942

Northwestern University

Evanston , Illinois 1938 - 1942

Leelanau School for Boys

Glen Arbor , Michigan

Milestones

1980

Final film, "Without Warning"

1978

Made last TV appearance in an episode of "The Eddie Capra Mysteries" (NBC)

1977

Last stage appearances in the L.A. production of David Rabe's "Streamers"

1972

Co-starred in the ABC movie "The Night Stalker"

1970

Acted in "The Anderson Tapes"

1969

Was featured in the ABC movie "Lost Flight"

1968

Played featured role in the NBC "Hallmark Hall of Fame" presentation "A Punt, a Pass, and a Prayer"

1967

Had co-starring turn in "The Dirty Dozen"

1965

Final Broadway appearance, "Mrs. Dally" opposite Arlene Francis

1964

Played featured role in the NYC premiere of Arthur Miller's play "After the Fall"; future wife Salome Jens co-starred

1961

Starred opposite Carroll Baker in "Something Wild"

1961

Appeared on Broadway in Ionesco's "Rhinocerous"

1959

Had lead role of a police detective in Hawaii in the syndicated TV series "Not for Hire"

1958

Had pivotal role as one of three French soldiers sentenced to the firing squad in "Paths of Glory", directed by Stanley Kubrick

1958

Was in Broadway production of "Cloud 7" opposite Martha Scott

1957

Once again appeared opposite Rule in the "Playhouse 90" production of "Four Women in Black"

1956

Reunited with "Picnic" co-star Janice Rule in "A Woman's Devotion", helmed by actor Paul Henried

1955

Starred in the pre-Broadway tour of "Top Man", co-starring Lee Remick; show opened in New Haven and closed in Philadelphia

1955

Portrayed Mike Hammer in "Kiss Me Deadly"

1953

Returned to Broadway to star in "Picnic" by William Inge; acted opposite Janice Rule

1953

Appeared in the Western "The Naked Spur"

1951

Feature film debut in "Teresa"

1949

Replaced Marlon Brando as Stanley Kowalski in "A Streetcar Named Desire" on Broadway and later toured in the role opposite Judith Evelyn as Blanche

1947

Breakthrough stage role in "Mister Roberts"; also understudied Henry Fonda in lead role

1946

Served as assistant stage manager and bit player in "Cyrano de Bergerac", directed by and starring Jose Ferrer

1944

Broadway debut in "Strange Fruit", directed by Jose Ferrer

1944

Moved to NYC

1942

Professional stage debut in small role of national touring company of "The Doughgirls" in Chicago

1924

At age three, moved with family to Chicago (date approximate)

After graduating from Northwestern, enlisted in the US Navy; military service ended after a shipboard accident left him with a neck injury

Reportedly turned down opportunity to recreate stage role in film version of "Picnic" because he didn't want to sign long-term contract with Columbia Pictures

Toured in play "Up in Mabel's Room"

Put under contract by MGM

Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota

Appeared in a USO tour of Italy in "Ten Little Indians" during WWII

During 1950s, appeared frequently as guest performer on TV programs like "Kraft Television Theatre", "Goodyear Playhouse", "Studio One", "Alfred Hitchcock Presents", "Playhouse 90" and "The Loretta Young Show"

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