Guy Edward Hearn

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Edward Hearn
File:The Truthful Liar (1922) - 1.jpg
Edward Hearn and Wanda Hawley standing in The Truthful Liar (1922)
Born (1888-09-06)September 6, 1888
Dayton, Washington, USA
Died April 15, 1963(1963-04-15) (aged 74)
Los Angeles County, California, USA
Occupation Actor
Years active 1915–1955
Spouse(s) Tryna Saindon (divorced)

Guy Edward Hearn (September 6, 1888 – April 15, 1963) was an American actor who, in a forty-year film career, starting in 1915, played hundreds of roles, starting with juvenile leads, then, briefly, as leading man, all during the silent era. With the arrival of sound, he became a character actor, appearing in scores of productions for virtually every studio, in which he was mostly unbilled, while those credits in which he was listed, reflected at least nine stage names, most frequently Edward Hearn, but also Guy E. Hearn, Ed Hearn, Eddie Hearn, Eddie Hearne, and Edward Hearne.[1]

Leading man in silent films

Born in the small Washington city of Dayton, the seat of Columbia County,[2] Hearn became an actor in his twenties, with a first known film credit listed in the 1915 short The Fool's Heart. His initial feature was Her Bitter Cup in 1916, the year during which he was seen in sixteen shorts and features. 1917 was equally prolific for him, providing seventeen appearances. As short films gave way to features, the number of his annual productions decreased (four in 1918, four in 1919 and five in 1920),[3] but he continued to work steadily, with film credits in every year of his career. He was third-billed in Faith, the 1920 production starring Peggy Hyland with J. Parks Jones, and had a supporting role that year in the serial, Daredevil Jack, a vehicle for boxing champion Jack Dempsey.[4]

Engaged by Universal Pictures' early silent film subsidiary, Bluebird Photoplays, as leading man to Ruth Clifford in 1918's The Lure of Luxury, Hearn was subsequently put under contract with the low-budget studio Film Booking Offices of America (also known as FBO Pictures Corporation)[5] and alternated between roles as leading man (to Ruth Renick in Tahiti-filmed The Fire Bride, Jane Novak in Colleen of the Pines, both 1922, Gladys Walton in 1923's The Town Scandal, Laura La Plante in 1924's Excitement and Josie Sedgwick in 1925's The Outlaw's Daughter) and second leads (billed after Patsy Ruth Miller, Ralph Graves and Edna Murphy in 1924's Daughters of Today).

In 1925, Hearn was fourth-billed as Clara Bow's brother in The Lawful Cheater, a crime drama fashioned as a vehicle for the flapper star, while he also had a rare first-billed role as the central character, Philip Nolan, in Fox Film Corporation's adaptation of Edward Everett Hale's classic short story, "The Man Without a Country". He was also top-billed in a minor 1924 western, The Devil's Partner, which not released until 1926, the year he was the human leading actor in a May vehicle for the dog star Peter the Great, a German Shepherd who, after appearing in one more film, was fatally shot in June. Also that year he was Helen Holmes' leading man in Perils of the Rail, while playing an unbilled cameo as a Union Army officer in another railroad-centered film, Buster Keaton's The General. In 1927, he was second-billed to Cornelius Keefe in Hook and Ladder No. 9, third-billed in the Larry Semon vehicle Spuds, the John BowersAnne Cornwall starrer The Heart of the Yukon and the Buffalo Bill Jr. western series entry Pals in Peril, had lower-billed roles in four other films and played an unbilled bit in Cecil B. DeMille's The King of Kings.

Character actor during sound era

In 1928, as Hearn reached his fortieth birthday, his changing fortunes were reflected through the six productions in which he appeared. He was still briefly cast as a leading man, but only to German Shepherds. "The New Pathé Dog Star, Cyclone" in the Spencer Gordon Bennet-directed Pathé Exchange serial The Yellow Cameo, was first, with the film's poster highlighting only the names of leading lady Allene Ray and Cyclone,[6] while FBO's feature film "Dog Justice", another vehicle for a German Shepherd (this dog's name was Ranger), came second. The other four titles, however, placed him between fifth and eighth in their cast lists. In the last of his 1928 titles, also his first sound film, December-released Ned McCobb's Daughter, he was billed below Irene Rich, Theodore Roberts, Robert Armstrong and George Barraud, and directly above future star Carol (Carole) Lombard. As sound films began to make greater inroads at the start of 1929, Hearn's five films that year indicated a further downward spiral. He was second-billed (to Sam Nelson, who co-starred with Ranger in five other 1927–29 films) in another silent Ranger vehicle, The One Man Dog and third-billed (above Thelma Todd) in the William Collier, Jr.Jacqueline Logan pairing for Columbia Pictures' part-talkie The Bachelor Girl. In the remaining three titles, however, his billing was much lower. Frank Capra's first sound film, The Donovan Affair listed him eleventh and another talkie mystery, Universal's The Drake Case, a posthumous release for its star, Gladys Brockwell, listed him eighth. Both of these dialogue-laden productions, exist only in silent versions, following the loss of their sound discs. The last of Hearn's 1929 releases, the western Hell's Heroes, left him with a small unbilled role.

In 1930 Hearn had small supporting roles in three features and an unbilled part in a Charley ChaseThelma Todd Hal Roach two-reeler, but it was 1931 that set the pattern for the remainder of his career. Forty-three years old in September of that year, he appeared in sixteen features and one short, with nine of those roles being unbilled. For each year, until 1945, he had an uninterrupted run of credits, most of them unbilled. Returning to film work in 1950, he again accumulated numerous credits until the end of 1953. His final two credits, both unbilled, were in 1955's This Island Earth and Tall Man Riding. His television work was limited to a 1952 episode of Cowboy G-Men and a 1953 episode of The Lone Ranger, both of which were early TV series aimed at a juvenile audience.

Eight years after his 1955 retirement, Guy Edward Hearn died in Los Angeles County at the age of 74. He was married to French Canadian Tryda Saindon from the mid-1910s until at least June 1930, as indicated in that year's decennial census. They were the parents of one child, Edward, born in Los Angeles during summer of 1916.[7]

Selected filmography

References

External links