Fredric March

Fredric March


Fredric March
Film: East side of the 1600 block of Vine Street
Born Frederick McIntyre Bickel on Aug. 31, 1897 in Racine, WI
Died April 14, 1975 of cancer in Mount Sinai Hospital, NY

Movie legend Fredric March was one of the world's most respected and honored performers of the stage and screen. A handsome 6-footer with a winning smile, March embodied many of Tinseltown's most unforgettable characters for more than half a century, most notably, as the diabolical Mr. Hyde in "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde" (1931) for which March won an Academy Award.

March was considered the best of the best, both on screen and off. "Frederic March was one of the most talented, most considerate and perhaps the finest man I have ever known," said John Frankenheimer, who directed March in "Seven Days in May" (1964) and "The Iceman Cometh" (1973). "He inspired everyone," Frankenheimer said. "I have seen very hard-boiled technicians break into applause at the end of a scene by Freddie March."

The quintessential actor, March created unforgettable characters. To break out of his suave, romantic leading man roles, he stunned audiences with his portrayal of the alcoholic husband of Janet Gaynor in "A Star Is Born" (1937).

As a middle-aged banker returning from World War II in "The Best Years of our Lives" (1946), he won his second Academy Award. As the bemused and empty Willie Loman in the screen version of "Death of a Salesman," March won a Golden Globe award in 1952. One of his favorite roles was as the aging and opinionated lawyer William Jennings Bryan opposite his old friend Spencer Tracy in "Inherit the Wind" (1960).

March was a director's dream who set the standard. "He invented the term 'professional.' He exemplified the word 'excellence,'" Frankenheimer said. "He really was what you would hope any great actor would be."

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    Academy Awards

    Year Category Work
    1930 Best Actor The Royal Family of Broadway Nomination
    1931 Best Actor Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde Win
    1937 Best Actor A Star Is Born Nomination
    1946 Best Actor The Best Years of Our Lives Win
    1951 Best Actor Death of a Salesman Nomination

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