Friday, February 24, 2012

Russell Arms R.I.P.

Russell Arms, who appeared in the classic movie The Man Who Came to Dinner (1942) and spent four years on the TV series Your Hit Parade, passed on 13 February 2012 at the age of 92.

Russell Arms was born on 3 February 1920 in Berkeley, California. He studied acting at the Pasadena Playhouse in California. In 1941 he signed with Warner Brothers.  His first movie role was in The Man Who Came  to Dinner, in which he played Richard Stanley, the son of Ernest and Daisy Stanley (Grant Mitchell and Billie Burke), the poor couple whose household is thrown into chaos by radio personality Sheridan Whiteside (Monty Woolley). In the Forties he went onto appear in such movies as Captains of the Clouds (1942), Wings for the Eagle (1942), Deception (1946), Life with Father (1947), Quick on the Trigger (1948), and Cover Up (1949). He made his television debut on The Chevrolet Tele-Theatre in 1948. During World War II he served in the United States Army Signal Corps from 1941 to 1944.

Russell Arms began the Fifties once more serving in the Signal Corps from 1951 to 1953. It was in 1952 that he joined the cast of Your Hit Parade. Your Hit Parade was a transplant from radio to television on which the show's regular cast would perform the top songs of the week. Mr. Arms remained with the show from 1952 to 1956. He also appeared on such shows as Robert Montgomery Presents, The Gale Storm Show, The Lineup, December Bride, and Buckskin. He appeared in the movie By the Light of the Silvery Moon (1953).

From the Sixties into the Eighties, Russell Arms appeared on such television shows as Gunsmoke, The Barbara Stanwyck Show, Surfside 6, Have Gun--Will Travel, Rawhide, The Rogues, Dragnet, Perry Mason, The Mod Squad, Adam-12, Harry O., Man From Atlantis, and Hardcastle & McCormick.

Russell Arms also had a career in music. His single "Cinco Robles (Five Oaks)" went to #22 on the Billboard chart in 1957. He released an album, Where Can a Wanderer Go, the same year.

Russell Arms was a reliable actor, guaranteed to give a good performance in any show or movie. He was also a talented singer with a very pleasant voice. Indeed, he was the only member of the cast of Your Hit Parade to have a hit single while the show was on the air. While most people today remember him from his very first film, The Man Who Came to Dinner, and his many guest appearances, he should perhaps be remembered for much more.

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