Ramon Novarro

Actor, Director, Singer
An engaging Latin American vaudevillian and singer who began his film career during the silent era, actor Ramn Novarro took over the role of Hollywood's top Latin Lover when Rudolph Valentino died in 1926, only to ... Read more »
Born: 02/06/1899 in Durango, MX

Filmography

Actor (19)

Heller in Pink Tights 1960 (Movie)

De Leon (Actor)

Crisis 1950 (Movie)

(Actor)

The Big Steal 1949 (Movie)

Colonel Ortega (Actor)

Mata Hari 1931 (Movie)

(Actor)

The Student Prince in Old Heidelberg 1926 (Movie)

Prince Karl Heinrich (Actor)

Ben Hur, A Tale of the Christ 1924 (Movie)

Ben-Hur (Actor)

Scaramouche 1922 (Movie)

André-Louis Moreau (Actor)

Across to Singapore (Movie)

Joel Shore (Actor)

Devil May Care (Movie)

Armand (Actor)

Joan the Woman (Movie)

Starving Peasant (Actor)

My American Wife (Movie)

(Actor)

Son of India (Movie)

Karim (Actor)

The Barbarian (Movie)

Jamil (Actor)

The Flying Fleet (Movie)

Tommy (Actor)

The Little American (Movie)

(Actor)

The Outriders (Movie)

Don Antonio Chaves (Actor)

The Pagan (Movie)

Henry Shoesmith, Jr. (Actor)

We Were Strangers (Movie)

Revolutionary Leader (Actor)

Biography

An engaging Latin American vaudevillian and singer who began his film career during the silent era, actor Ramón Novarro took over the role of Hollywood's top Latin Lover when Rudolph Valentino died in 1926, only to stagnate once talkies came of age. Novarro first came to prominence as a villainous henchman in "The Prisoner of Zenda" (1922), which led to starring roles in popular films like "Scaramouche" (1923) and "The Arab" (1924). He had his greatest success playing wealthy man-turned slave Judah Ben-Hur in "Ben-Hur: A Tale of Christ" (1925), a troubled, but successful epic that served as a precursor to William Wyler's 1959 classic. From there, Novarro starred opposite Norma Shearer in "The Student Prince in Old Heidelberg" (1927) and Joan Crawford in "Across to Singapore" (1928). But once he made the transition to talkies after "Devil May Care" (1929), Novarro saw his popularity plummet. By the end of the decade, he was out of a contract and lucky to find work in bit parts or character roles. Meanwhile, he fell into alcoholism - due in part to his lifelong struggle with his homosexuality - and his career suffered even more. Novarro did have a bit of a revival with character work on popular TV series like Dr. Kildare" (NBC, 1961-66) and "Bonanza" (NBC, 1959-1973), but his murder in 1968 by two prostitute brothers ended his life in a tawdry fashion. Still, Novarro remained a popular figure from the silent era whose contributions to film were undeniable.

Relationships

Father

Sibling
Novarro was the oldest of 13 children four had died in childhood two brothers and five sisters survived him

Herbert Howe

Companion
covered Hollywood began relationship in 1923 separated c. 1926

Milestones

1960

Last film, "Heller in Pink Tights"

1936

Only film as producer and director, "Contra la Corriente"

1934

Last MGM film, "The Night is Young"

1929

First talkie, "Devil May Care"

1926

Most famous role, "Ben Hur"

1922

Breakthrough role in "The Prisoner of Zenda"

1922

Signed with Metro (later MGM)

1917

Probable film debut, "The Hostage"

1914

Moved to Los Angeles with family

Did character work in television in 1960s

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