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 Tom Santschi

Tom Santschi

Original Name Paul William
Birth
Crystal City, Jefferson County, Missouri, USA
Death 9 Apr 1931 (aged 50)
Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California, USA
Burial Hollywood, Los Angeles County, California, USA
Plot Abbey of the Psalms, Sanctuary of Hope, Crypt 472
Memorial ID 7929 · View Source
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Actor, Director. A strapping, steely-eyed leading man, he enjoyed considerable popularity in the 1910s playing two-fisted heroes and belligerent bad guys in action films. As the villain of the landmark feature "The Spoilers" (1914), Santschi squared off with star William Farnum in the most spectacular fight scene filmed up to that time, a bloody, furniture-smashing brawl that ran for several minutes. It was still being discussed decades later and remains a key moment of the World War I-era cinema. Paul William Santschi was born in Lucerne, Switzerland, and arrived in the United States as a child. He made his screen debut with the Selig Polyscope studio in 1908 after years of stage experience. Prior to "The Spoilers", Santschi had the distinction of appearing in the first movie shot entirely in Los Angeles, "The Heart of a Race Tout" (1909), and in the first cliffhanger serial, "The Adventures of Kathlyn" (1914). From 1914 to 1916 he directed some 50 of his own two-reel starring vehicles, among them "The Octopus" (1915), "His Fighting Blood" (1915), and "A Sultana of the Desert" (1915). In the 1920s he eased into dastardly supporting parts. His 320 credits also include "Davy Crockett" (title role, 1910), "The Garden of Allah" (1916), "Little Orphan Annie" (1918), "Robinson Crusoe" (1924), "Three Bad Men" (1926), "In Old Arizona" (1929), and "The Utah Kid" (1930). Santschi's notoriety from "The Spoilers" dogged him to the end of his career. He was hired as a fight consultant for the 1930 remake starring Gary Cooper, and in one of his last films, "Ten Nights in a Barroom" (1931), he again had to duke it out with the aging William Farnum. Afflicted with hypertension in his later years, he died in his sleep of an apparent heart attack at 50.

Bio by: Bobb Edwards


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 23 Dec 1999
  • Find A Grave Memorial 7929
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Tom Santschi (14 Oct 1880–9 Apr 1931), Find A Grave Memorial no. 7929, citing Hollywood Forever Cemetery, Hollywood, Los Angeles County, California, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .