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 Kenneth MacDonald

Kenneth MacDonald

Original Name Dollins
Birth
Portland, Jay County, Indiana, USA
Death 5 May 1972 (aged 70)
Woodland Hills, Los Angeles County, California, USA
Burial Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California, USA
Plot Sheltering Hills, Lot 155
Memorial ID 19770 · View Source
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Actor. He was the youngest son of salesman John W. Dollins and hairdresser Mary E. Tate, and grew up in Indiana. After graduating from high school in 1920, he started working as a stage actor. In 1930 he married LaMee Kathryn Nave, which whom he had three children. That same year, he officially changed his last name from Dollins to MacDonald. After about a decade of performing onstage, he moved to Hollywood to try to break into motion picture acting. (Some sources list him as appearing as the star in a number of silent films, primarily Westerns, in the Twenties, though it is uncertain as to whether this may be a case of mistaken identity with another actor named Kenneth MacDonald.) MacDonald appeared in a few movies in the early Thirties, but only in uncredited bit parts. To try to boost his appeal and improve his prospects for a career as a screen actor, he self-published a promotional pamphlet entitled 'The Case for Kenneth MacDonald' and distributed it to every studio and producer he could think of. This strategy worked, and he soon began getting work at many of the studios he had sent the pamphlet to. He found a particular amount of success in B-Westerns, among them Charles Starrett's 'Durango Kid' series, which was made at Columbia Pictures. Even though he wasn't the star of the series, MacDonald quickly became a regular fixture in it. In addition to being a prolific actor in Westerns, he also appeared with the Three Stooges a total of seventeen times between 1946 and 1956, almost always playing a villain, a con man, a criminal, a gangster, or a crooked lawyer. The only instance where he played a non-villainous role was in 'Blunder Boys' (1955). After leaving Columbia's short subjects department, MacDonald went into television acting. Most of the television programs he appeared in were in Westerns. He also had a recurring role on the series 'Perry Mason,' in which he played a Superior Court Judge. He was recommended for the role by Sam White, who was part of the program's production team. Sam White's brother Jules was the head of Columbia's short subjects department, and thus remembered MacDonald's name and credentials. MacDonald's final appearance was in 'Which Way to the Front?' (1970), a movie in which he played an uncredited bit role. In all, he appeared in over 200 feature-length films, short subjects, and television programs combined.

Bio by: Carrie-Anne


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 25 Jan 2001
  • Find A Grave Memorial 19770
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Kenneth MacDonald (8 Sep 1901–5 May 1972), Find A Grave Memorial no. 19770, citing Forest Lawn Memorial Park (Hollywood Hills), Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .