Thursday, August 11, 2016

Lloyd "Michael Shayne" Nolan

Lloyd Nolan was one of those blessed people who were instantly likeable on the screen, and I will guess in person as well.  An early Darren McGavin (the "old man" in A Christmas Story). 

                                     Lloyd Nolan in 1939
Lloyd was born August 11, 1902.  From his first movie in 1935 until his death in 1985, Lloyd kept very busy in movies and later TV.  He portrayed a lot of cops, his role as Lt. DeGarmot in Lady in the Lake for example. 

      Bob, Lloyd Nolan and Audrey Totter in Lady in the Lake (1946)

In 1940 Lloyd made his first Michael Shayne movie, the start of a very successful series for 20th Century Fox in which Lloyd got to demonstrate his knack for humor, as well as being the hard-boiled detective.

The still below is from Buy Me That Town (1941), a movie based on a Damon Runyon story.  It is the perfect Lloyd Nolan role.   Ricky Deane is a racketeer who buys out a small bankrupt town and makes it into a safe haven for criminals, for a price of course.  By the end of the movie, he becomes a good guy and wins the hand of Virginia Paradise.  One of the really bad guys is Chink Moran, as played by Sheldon Leonard.  (Now that's type-casting!) 

                Lloyd Nolan, Constance Moore and Sheldon Leonard
                                in Buy Me That Town (1941)

Lloyd also made some classic war films such as Bataan and Guadalcanal Diary.  His last movie was Hannah and Her Sisters (1986), directed by Woody Allen.  Not a bad movie to go out in.  Happy Birthday, Mr. Nolan.  

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