Roland Winters

(1904 - 1989)

A photo of Roland Winters
Roland Winters
1904 - 1989
Born
November 22, 1904
Death
October 22, 1989
Last Known Residence
Englewood, Bergen County, New Jersey 07631
Summary
Roland Winters was born on November 22, 1904. He died on October 22, 1989 at age 84. We know that Roland Winters had been residing in Englewood, Bergen County, New Jersey 07631.
Updated: February 06, 2019
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Roland Winters
Born Roland Winternitz
November 22, 1904
Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.
Died October 22, 1989 (aged 84)
Englewood, New Jersey U.S.
Occupation Actor
Years active 1924–1982
Spouse Ada Howe
Roland Winters (born Roland Winternitz; November 22, 1904 – October 22, 1989)[1] was an American actor who played many character parts in films and television but today is best remembered for portraying Charlie Chan in six films in the late 1940s.
Early years
Born Roland Winternitz in Boston, Massachusetts, on November 22, 1904, Winters was the son of Felix Winternitz, a violinist and composer who was teaching at New England Conservatory of Music.

Charlie Chan films
Monogram Pictures eventually selected Winters to replace Sidney Toler in the Charlie Chan film series.

Winters was 44 when he made the first of his six Chan films, The Chinese Ring in 1947 and ending with Charlie Chan and the Sky Dragon (also known as Sky Dragon) in 1949. His other Chan films were "Docks of New Orleans" (1948), "Shanghai Chest" (1948), "The Golden Eye" (1948) and "The Feathered Serpent" (1948). He also had character roles in three other feature films while he worked on the Chan series.

Winters is less well known in the Charlie Chan role than his two predecessors. He made far fewer Chan films than they did, and he came along at a time when the series was well past its higher-budget days. Viewers are divided about his performance in the role. Some consider him an ineffective successor to Warner Oland and Sidney Toler, but others defend him for his unique approach to the character.

Yunte Huang, in Charlie Chan: The Untold Story of the Honorable Detective and His Rendezvous with American History, noted differences in the actors' appearances, especially that Winters' "tall nose simply could not be made to look Chinese." Huang also cited the actor's age, writing, "at the age of forty-four, he also looked too young to resemble a seasoned Chinese sage."

In contrast to Huang, Ken Hanke wrote in his book, Charlie Chan at the Movies: History, Filmography, and Criticism, "Roland Winters has never received his due ... Winters brought with him a badly needed breath of fresh air to the series." He cited "the richness of the approach and the verve with which the series was being tackled" during the Winters era." Similarly, Howard M. Berlin, in his book, Charlie Chan's Words of Wisdom, commented that "Winters brought a much needed breath of fresh air to the flagging film series with his self-mocking, semi-satirical interpretation of Charlie, which is very close to the Charlie Chan in Biggers' novels."

Later films and television:
After the series finished, Winters continued to work in film and television until 1982. He was in the movies So Big and Abbott and Costello Meet the Killer, Boris Karloff, played Elvis' father in Blue Hawaii and a judge in the Elvis film Follow That Dream. He made appearances in the early TV series "Meet Millie" as the boss. In one episode of the Bewitched TV series, he played the normally unseen McMann of McMann and Tate. He also portrayed Mr. Gimbel in Miracle on 34th Street in 1973.

Death
Winters died as the result of a stroke at the Actor's Fund Nursing Home in Englewood, New Jersey on October 22, 1989.

Selected filmography
Citizen Kane (1941) – Newspaperman at Trenton Town Hall (uncredited)
13 Rue Madeleine (1946) – Van Duyval (uncredited)
The Chinese Ring (1947) – Charlie Chan
Docks of New Orleans (1948) – Charlie Chan
Shanghai Chest (1948) – Charlie Chan
The Golden Eye (1948) – Charlie Chan
Cry of the City (1948) – Ledbetter
The Return of October (1948) – Colonel Wood
Kidnapped (1948) – Capt. Hoseason
The Feathered Serpent (1948) – Charlie Chan
Tuna Clipper (1949) – E.J. Ransom
Sky Dragon (1949) – Charlie Chan
Abbott and Costello Meet the Killer, Boris Karloff (1949) – T. Hanley Brooks
Once More, My Darling (1949) – Colonel Head
A Dangerous Profession (1949) – Jerry McKay
Malaya (1949) – Bruno Gruber
Guilty of Treason (1950) – Soviet Comissar Belov
Captain Carey, U.S.A. (1950) – Manfredo Acuto
Killer Shark (1950) – Jeffrey White
Underworld Story (1950) – Stanley Becker
Convicted (1950) – Vernon Bradley, Attorney
Between Midnight and Dawn (1950) – Leo Cusick
To Please a Lady (1950) – Dwight Barrington
The West Point Story (1950) – Harry Eberhart
Sierra Passage (1950) – Sam Cooper
Inside Straight (1951) – Alexander Tomson
Raton Pass (1951) – Sheriff Perigord
Follow the Sun (1951) – Dr. Graham
She's Working Her Way Through College (1952) – Fred Copeland
A Lion Is in the Streets (1953) – Prosecutor (uncredited)
So Big (1953) – Klaas Pool
Bigger Than Life (1956) – Dr. Ruric
Top Secret Affair (1957) – Sen. Burdick
Jet Pilot (1957) – Col. Sokolov
Never Steal Anything Small (1959) – Doctor
Everything's Ducky (1961) – Capt. Lewis Bollinger
Blue Hawaii (1961) – Fred Gates
Follow That Dream (1962) – Judge
Loving (1970) – Plommie
Miracle on 34th Street (1973) – Mr. Gimbel
The Dain Curse (1978) – Hubert Collinson
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Biography
Roland Winters
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Roland Winters
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Englewood, Bergen County, New Jersey 07631
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Roland Winters died on
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Roland Winters was born on
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Roland Winters died on October 22, 1989 at 84 years of age. He was born on November 22, 1904. There is no information about Roland's surviving family. We know that Roland Winters had been residing in Englewood, Bergen County, New Jersey 07631.

Refresh this page to see various historical events that occurred during Roland's lifetime.

In 1904, in the year that Roland Winters was born, the "Teddy's Bear" was first produced. After seeing a political cartoon of President Teddy Roosevelt refusing to kill a clubbed and tied up bear, Jewish Russian immigrant Morris Michtom - who owned a candy shop and sold stuffed animals that he and his wife made at night at the store - made a "Teddy's Bear" and put it in his shop's window. The stuffed bears were an immediate success and Michtom and his wife went on to found the Ideal Novelty and Toy Co.

In 1910, Roland was only 6 years old when the Mann Act, also called the White-Slave Traffic Act, was signed into law. Its purpose was to make it a felony to engage in interstate or foreign commerce transport of "any woman or girl for the purpose of prostitution or debauchery, or for any other immoral purpose". But the language was so broad that it was also applied to consensual sex between adults when wished.

In 1930, he was 26 years old when on August 6th, N.Y. Supreme Court Judge Joseph Crater went through papers in his office, destroyed some of them, withdrew all his money from the bank - $5,150, sold his stock, met friends at a restaurant for dinner and disappeared after getting into a taxi (or walking down the street - his friends' testimony later changed). His disappearance was reported to the police on September 3rd - almost a month later. His wife didn't know what happened, his fellow Justices had no idea, and his mistresses (he had several) said that they didn't know. While his disappearance was front page news, his fate was never discovered and after 40 years the case was closed, still without knowing if Crater was dead or alive.

In 1941, by the time he was 37 years old, on June 25th, President Roosevelt signed Executive Order 8802, prohibiting racial discrimination in the defense industry. EO 8802 was the first federal action to prohibit employment discrimination - without prejudice as to "race, creed, color, or national origin" - in the U.S. Civil Rights groups had planned a march on Washington D.C. to protest for equal rights but with the signing of the Order, they canceled the March.

In 1989, in the year of Roland Winters's passing, on November 9th, the Berlin Wall fell. The Wall was built by the East Germans to keep East Berliners from escaping into West Berlin, separating families and friends. When the head of the East German Communist Party announced that day that East Berliners could cross whenever they pleased, happy crowds surged across the border. People brought tools and took parts of the hated wall.

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