Robert J Wilke

While he looked as rugged as other Western television actors of his day, Robert J. Wilke never quite achieved the same level of stardom as some of his contemporaries. Nevertheless, he had a lengthy and prolific career ... Read more »
Born: 05/18/1914

Filmography

Actor (31)

Stripes 1981 (Movie)

General Barnicke (Actor)

The Texas Rangers 1980 - 1981 (TV Show)

Actor

Days of Heaven 1978 (Movie)

Farm Foreman (Actor)

The Sweet Creek County War 1977 (Movie)

Lucas K Derring (Actor)

Santee 1972 (Movie)

(Actor)

The Boy Who Cried Werewolf 1972 (Movie)

Sheriff (Actor)

A Gunfight 1970 (Movie)

Marshal (Actor)

The Resurrection of Zachary Wheeler 1970 (Movie)

Hugh Fielding (Actor)

Tony Rome 1967 (Movie)

Ralph Turpin (Actor)

Fate Is the Hunter 1964 (Movie)

Stillman (Actor)

The Hallelujah Trail 1964 (Movie)

Five Barrels (Actor)

Shock Treatment 1963 (Movie)

Technician Newton (Actor)

Maverick 1957 - 1962 (TV Show)

Actor

The Boston Terrier 1961 - 1962 (TV Show)

Actor

Spartacus 1960 (Movie)

Captain of Guard (Actor)

The Magnificent Seven 1960 (Movie)

Wallace (Actor)

Never Steal Anything Small 1959 (Movie)

Lennie (Actor)

Man of the West 1958 (Movie)

Ponch (Actor)

The Saga of Andy Burnett 1957 - 1958 (TV Show)

Actor

Night Passage 1957 (Movie)

Concho (Actor)

The Tarnished Angels 1957 (Movie)

Hank (Actor)

Gun the Man Down 1956 (Movie)

(Actor)

The Lone Ranger 1956 (Movie)

Cassidy (Actor)

The Rawhide Years 1956 (Movie)

Neal (Actor)

Written on the Wind 1956 (Movie)

Dan Willis (Actor)

Shotgun 1955 (Movie)

Bentley (Actor)

Wichita 1955 (Movie)

Ben Thompson (Actor)

20,000 Leagues Under the Sea 1954 (Movie)

First Mate of 'Nautilus' (Actor)

High Noon 1952 (Movie)

James Pierce (Actor)

The Desperate Mission (TV Show)

Actor

They Call It Murder (TV Show)

Actor

Biography

While he looked as rugged as other Western television actors of his day, Robert J. Wilke never quite achieved the same level of stardom as some of his contemporaries. Nevertheless, he had a lengthy and prolific career, beginning in the mid-'30s as a movie stuntman, which led to acting roles in features (in small parts, generally henchmen or ne'er do wells). By the early '50s, he was still appearing in minor Westerns when he had a breakthrough in "High Noon" as Jim Pierce, one of the three bad guys waiting for Gary Cooper's Will Kane at the train station. Although the vast majority of his subsequent film roles were also villains, "High Noon" led to a small part in "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea", as well as lots of television work. During the late '50s and the '60s, Wilke landed his first recurring characters, on two episodes of "Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color" and the "Zorro" series, and around this time he also became familiar to fans of Western shows, logging credits for "Gunsmoke", "Bonanza", and countless others. Toward the end of his career, his highlights included Terrence Malick's 1978 romance "Days of Heaven", in which he played the main characters' primary antagonist. Yet Wilke's farm foreman was something of a revelation, coming across more as a working man with responsibilities to carry out than the sneering villain one might have expected.

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