John Ericson (1926 - 2020)

John Ericson
1926 - 2020
updated May 05, 2020
John Ericson was born on September 25, 1926 in Germany. He died on May 3, 2020 in at age 93.

September 25, 1926 – May 3, 2020) was a German-American film and television actor.
Years active‎: ‎1950–2008

John Ericson Biography

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John Ericson
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John Ericson was born on in Germany
John Ericson died on in United States
John Ericson was born on in Germany
John Ericson died on in United States
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German and Swedish.
American Citizen.


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Born September 25, 1926 in Düsseldorf, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany
Died May 3, 2020 in Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA (pneumonia)
Birth Name Joseph Meibes
Height 6' 2" (1.88 m)
Ericson was born in Düsseldorf, the son of a German chemist and a Swedish actress and opera singer. Escaping from the Nazi regime, his family emigrated to the U.S. when he was three. At first living in Detroit, they eventually settled in New York where his dad (according to a 1955 newspaper article) found lucrative employment as president of a food extract company. After graduating from Newton High School, John enrolled at the Academy of Dramatic Arts, financially supporting his studies working at a Walgreen drug store.

Most sources incorrectly cite his acting debut as being Stalag 17 on Broadway, but Ericson himself stated (in a 1989 interview with Skip E. Lowe) that his career kick-started with the romantic wartime drama Teresa (1951), filmed in Italy by Metro Goldwyn Mayer. Afterwards, he made the decision not to sign a studio contract for fear of being typecast as 'boy-next-door' types. On the strength of his performance in Teresa, producer/director José Ferrer offered Ericson not only what amounted to being the nominal lead in Stalag 17, but the opportunity to play an initially unsympathetic part as the slick, cynical gambler J. J. Sefton (the coveted motion picture role was eventually assigned to William Holden and won the star an Academy Award).

Between 1954 and 1955, Ericson was under contract at MGM and made for four films for the studio: Rhapsody (1954) (opposite Elizabeth Taylor), Green Fire (1954) (co-starring Grace Kelly who had been in his class at the Academy) and the seminal Spencer Tracy western Bad Day at Black Rock (1955) (as a nervy hotel clerk). During the next three decades, he worked as a free-lance actor, his wavy-haired good looks and athletic build not lost on the industry. He co-starred with Anne Francis in Honey West (1965), a short-lived series -- apparently modelled on The Avengers (1961) -- which featured a crime-solving, judo savvy lady detective (even wearing Diana Rigg-style jumpsuits) and her right hand man. The show only lasted for 30 episodes but has since gained a minor cult following.

Ericson's frequent TV guest appearances included Rawhide (1959), Burke's Law (1963), Bonanza (1959), The Invaders (1967) and The F.B.I. (1965). For the big screen, he starred in several James Bond pastiches and spaghetti westerns, produced in Italy and Spain. In the U.S., he had leads in thrillers (The Money Jungle (1967) ), westerns (notably, The Return of Jack Slade (1955) and the High Noon (1952)-lookalike Day of the Badman (1958) ) and science fiction B-graders (The Destructors (1968) and Dan Duryea's last film, The Bamboo Saucer (1968)). He also starred as the titular 1930s depression-era gangster in Pretty Boy Floyd (1960). On the stage, he played King Arthur to Kathryn Grayson's Guinevere in a 1967 production of the musical Camelot. A reviewer commented that what Ericson lacked in the vocal department he more than made up for by a 'masterful performance'. His dramatic theatrical credits included Richard III, Mr. Roberts and A Streetcar Named Desire.

In his spare time, John Ericson sidelined as a painter of landscapes and still life, a sculptor and a keen amateur photographer. Until his death on May 3 2020, he resided in New Mexico with his second wife Karen Huston whom he married in 1974. He has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Personal Life & Organizations

Spouse (2)
Karen Ericson (1974 - present)
Milly Coury (12 September 1953 - 1971) ( divorced) ( 2 children)
Trivia (6)
Children, with Coury, Brett and Nicole
Studied at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York City. Was in the same class as Grace Kelly, Jack Palance, Don Murray and Don Rickles.
Posed for the nude centerfold in Playgirl magazine's January 1974 issue.
Currently living in New Mexico [2003]
In 1951 appeared on Broadway in the hit drama Stalag 17.
Was in a relationship with Anne Bancroft in the early 1950s before his 1st marriage.

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John Ericson passed away on May 3, 2020 in at 93 years of age. He was born on September 25, 1926 in Germany. We are unaware of information about John's family or relationships.
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1926 - 2020 World Events

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In 1926, in the year that John Ericson was born, on November 15th, NBC was founded. It was the U.S.'s first major broadcast network. Ownership of the network was split between RCA (a majority partner at 50%), its founding corporate parent General Electric (which owned 30%), and Westinghouse (which owned the remaining 20%).

In 1939, he was merely 13 years old when in May, Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, the first full-length animated film, reached a total international gross of $6.5 million which made it (to then) the most successful sound film of all time. First released in December 1937, it was originally dubbed "Disney's Folly" but the premiere received a standing ovation from the audience. At the 11th Academy Awards in February 1939, Walt Disney won an Academy Honorary Award - a full-size Oscar statuette and seven miniature ones - for Snow White.

In 1948, he was 22 years old when on January 30th, Mahatma Gandhi was assassinated in New Delhi by a member of a Hindu nationalist party who thought that Gandhi was too accommodating to Muslims. The man, Nathuram Godse, shot Gandhi 3 times. He died immediately. The shooter was tried, convicted, and hung in November 1949.

In 1989, John was 63 years old when on January 20th, George Herbert Walker Bush became the 41st President of the United States. Previously Ronald Regan's Vice President, he ran against Michael Dukakis and won the popular vote by 53.4% to 45.6%.

In 1995, when he was 69 years old, on October 16th, the Million Man March took place on the National Mall in Washington DC. The March was organized to address "the ills of black communities and call for unity and revitalization of African American communities". An estimated 850,000 people attended.

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