Jose Ferrer (1912 - 1992)

Jose Ferrer
1912 - 1992
updated November 08, 2019
Jose Ferrer was born on January 8, 1912 in San Juan, San Juan Puerto Rico. He died on January 26, 1992 in Coral Gables, Florida at age 80.

José Vicente Ferrer de Otero y Cintrón (January 8, 1912 – January 26, 1992), known as José Ferrer, was a Puerto Rican actor and theatre and film director. He was the first Puerto Rican-born actor, as well as the first Hispanic actor, to win an Academy Award (in 1950 for Cyrano de Bergerac).
Relatives‎: ‎Tessa Ferrer‎ (granddaughter) Years active‎: ‎1935–1992
Awards‎: ‎National Medal of Arts‎ (1985) Born‎: ‎José Vicente Ferrer de Otero y Cintrón; J...
‎Uta Hagen · ‎Phyllis Hill · ‎Cyrano de Bergerac · ‎Santa María Magdalena de ...
José Ferrer - IMDb

Jose Ferrer Biography

Vital facts & highlights of Jose's life to share with the world.

Jose Ferrer
Most commonly known name
First name
Middle name
Last name(s)
Nickname(s) or aliases
Unknown. Did Jose move a lot? Where was his last known location?
Last known residence
Jose Ferrer was born on in San Juan, El Cinco County, San Juan Puerto Rico
Jose Ferrer died on in Coral Gables, Miami-Dade County, Florida United States
Jose Ferrer was born on in San Juan, El Cinco County, San Juan Puerto Rico
Jose Ferrer died on in Coral Gables, Miami-Dade County, Florida United States
There is no cause of death listed for Jose.
Cause of death
Cementerio Santa María Magdalena de Pazzi, Calle Cementerio, in San Juan, San Juan Puerto Rico 00926
Burial / Funeral

Ethnicity & Lineage

Ferrer was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico, the son of María Providencia Cintrón, who was from the small coastal town of Yabucoa, Puerto Rico, and Rafael Ferrer, an attorney and writer from San Juan. He was the grandson of Gabriel Ferrer Hernández, a doctor and advocate of Puerto Rican independence from Spain. He had two younger sisters, Elvira and Leticia.

Nationality & Locations Lived

Puerto Rico.
Princeton, NJ
New York


Unknown. Was Jose a religious man?


The family moved to New York in 1914. Ferrer studied at the Swiss boarding school Institut Le Rosey.
In 1933, Ferrer began his university studies at the age of 16, and completed his bachelor's degree in architecture at Princeton University, where he wrote his senior thesis on "French Naturalism and Pardo Bazán". Ferrer was also a member of the Princeton Triangle Club and played piano in a band, "José Ferrer and His Pied Pipers". Ferrer then studied Romance languages at Columbia University for 1934-35.


He was awarded a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6541 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California on February 8, 1960.
In real life, the actor pierced his left ear in 1972 at age 60 at the urging of his girlfriend (later wife). For the rest of his career, he often enjoyed incorporating an earring into a role, even if it was anachronistic in certain productions. Among the roles in which he wears jewelry in his pierced ear: Paco (1976); The Amazing Captain Nemo (1978); Fedora (1978); The Fifth Musketeer (1979); Tales of the Unexpected: The Man from the South (1979); Battle Creek Brawl (1980); Evita Peron (1981); and Dune (1984). In Fedora (1978), a joke about it is even included in the dialog: "Don't let this earring fool you.".
He spoke Italian quite well.
Is one of 13 actors who have received an Academy Award nomination for his portrayal of a real-life king.
Appears in three Oscar Best Picture nominees: Moulin Rouge (1952), The Caine Mutiny (1954) and Lawrence of Arabia (1962), with the last being the only winner.

Personal Life & Organizations

Jose Ferrer - 1952.jpg
Ferrer in 1952
Born José Vicente Ferrer de Otero y Cintrón
January 8, 1912
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Died January 26, 1992 (aged 80)
Coral Gables, Florida, U.S.
Resting place Santa María Magdalena de Pazzis Cemetery
Occupation Actor, director
Years active 1935–1992
Spouse(s) Uta Hagen (1938–1948)
Phyllis Hill (1948–1953)
Rosemary Clooney
(1953–1961 and 1964–1967)
Stella Magee (1977–1992)
Children 6, including Miguel and Rafael Ferrer
Relatives Tessa Ferrer (granddaughter)
Awards National Medal of Arts (1985)

Military Service

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Average Age

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Jose Ferrer Family Tree

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Jose Ferrer Obituary

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Jose Ferrer was also a Director.
Film director
Ferrer made his debut as film director at Universal with an adaptation of The Shrike (1955), in which he also starred opposite June Allyson.
Ferrer then performed Cyrano in an episode of Producer's Showcase on television, directed by Mel Ferrer and co-starring Claire Bloom.
He went to England to star in and direct a war movie for Warwick Productions, The Cockleshell Heroes (1955), alongside Trevor Howard; it was a success at the British box office.
Ferrer co-wrote, directed and starred in the film The Great Man (1956), at Universal. He directed and starred in two films for MGM: I Accuse! (1958), where he played Captain Alfred Dreyfus, and The High Cost of Loving (1958) a comedy with Gena Rowlands. Both flopped at the box office.
Back on Broadway, Ferrer co-wrote and directed the stage musical Oh, Captain! (1958) with Tony Randall, which only had a short run. He directed and starred in Edwin Booth (1958), playing the title role; it was not a success.
In 1958, Ferrer narrated the children's album Tubby the Tuba, which was nominated for the Best Recording For Children at the 1st Annual Grammy Awards.
Ferrer took over the direction of the troubled musical Juno (1959) from Vincent J. Donehue, who had himself taken over from Tony Richardson. The show, which starred Shirley Booth, folded after 16 performances and mixed-to extremely negative critical reaction.
However, he followed it directing the original stage production of Saul Levitt's The Andersonville Trial (1959–60), about the trial following the revelation of conditions at the infamous Civil War prison. It was a hit and featured George C. Scott, running for 179 performances.
Around this time Ferrer also appeared in television in episodes of General Electric Theater and The United States Steel Hour.
20th Century Fox
Ferrer signed a contract with 20th Century Fox to direct films. He made Return to Peyton Place (1962) and State Fair (1962), both of which were commercial disappointments.
Ferrer had a key support role in the film Lawrence of Arabia (1962) which was a huge success. Although Ferrer's performance was only small he said it was his best on screen.
At Fox, he played an investigating police officer in Nine Hours to Rama (1963). He also guest starred on The Greatest Show on Earth.

Followers & Sources
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1912 - 1992 World Events

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In 1912, in the year that Jose Ferrer was born, in October, former President Theodore Roosevelt was shot, but not killed, while campaigning for another term as President with the newly created Bull Moose (Progressive) Party. John Schrank was a Bavarian-born saloon-keeper from New York who had been stalking Roosevelt when he shot him just before a campaign speech. Shot in the chest (and showing the audience his bloody shirt), Roosevelt went on to give a 55 to 90 minute talk (reports vary on the length) before being treated for the injury. After 8 days in the hospital, Roosevelt went back on the campaign trail.

In 1942, he was 30 years old when due to World War II, automobile production in the United States was stopped on February 1st. A tire rationing program had begun the month before. Detroit - the main hub of car manufacturing - was ordered to free up assembly lines for military production. The president of the Automobile Manufacturers Association said “The automotive industry is in this war all the way". Some dealerships had to close and others expanded their repair shops. The used car market boomed (as did a black market in used cars).

In 1964, he was 52 years old when on June 11th, activist Nelson Mandela was sentenced to life imprisonment in South Africa for conspiring to overthrow the state (because of his numerous anti-apartheid activities). He served 27 years in prison.

In 1986, when he was 74 years old, on September 8th, the Oprah Winfrey Show went into national syndication. A popular talk show, it was number 1 in the ratings since its debut. The last show aired on May 25, 2011.

In 1992, in the year of Jose Ferrer's passing, on April 29th, riots began in Los Angeles after the "Rodney King" verdict was issued. Four LAPD officers had been accused of using excessive force (assault) on African-American Rodney King, who had been stopped for drunk driving. The beating had been videotaped. Their acquittal sparked a 6 day riot in Los Angeles.

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