His first marriage was to Patsy Ruth Kahle, in 1943. Son of Clarence Leroy Van Cleef and Maria Lavinia Van Fleet, both mostly of Dutch ancestry. After the war he worked as an office administrator, becoming involved in amateur theatrics in his spare time. A young Van Cleef also made an appearance on The Andy Griffith Show and as Frank Diamond in The Untouchables, in an episode entitled "The Unhired Assassin". Lee Van Cleef, the nine-fingered master of the sidelong Western sneer, died 20 years ago today.. Had he lived, he’d be 84 years old now. In his final two westerns he co-starred with Leif Garrett in God's Gun (1976) and Kid Vengeance (1977), both of which were filmed mainly in Israel. For the next decade he played a string of memorably villainous characters, primarily in westerns but also in crime dramas such as The Big Combo (1955). Clarence's cause of death was heart attack… During this time, he was observed by visiting talent scouts, who were impressed by Van Cleef's stage presence and delivery. In all, Van Cleef is credited with 90 movie roles and 109 television appearances over a 38-year span. [25] He was buried at Forest Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery, Hollywood Hills, California, with an inscription on his grave marker referring to his many acting performances as a villain: "BEST OF THE BAD". Birthplace:Somerville, NJ. You can do much more with a villain part. In January 1945, Incredible moved to the Black Sea, and performed sweeping duties out of the Soviet Navy base at Sevastopol, Crimea. Born Clarence Leroy Van Cleef Jr., January 9, 1925, in Somerville, New Jersey, his parents (Clarence Leroy Van Cleef and Marian L. Van Fleet) were both new Jersey natives of Dutch extraction. They had three children, Alan, Deborah and David, and divorced in 1958. Despite suffering from heart disease from the late 1970s and having a pacemaker installed in the early 1980s, Van Cleef continued to work in films until his death on December 16, 1989, at age 64. I believe in showing real violence, not toy violence. Lee Van Cleef was born in Somerville, New Jersey, on January 9, 1925. Throat cancer was listed as a secondary cause of death. |  Lee Van Cleef was born in 2020s. During one summer in the early 1950s he was a camp counselor in NYC for Marc Furstenberg. Corral. - IMDb Mini Biography By: Five Fingers of Death . He appeared in episode 82 of the TV series The Lone Ranger in 1952. [21][self-published source? For a spaghetti western, it includes all the items one expects from a film. He was involved in a car accident in 1959 in which he lost his left kneecap. Van Cleef guest-starred on the CBS Western series Have Gun – Will Travel, on the ABC/Warner Bros. series Colt .45, on the NBC Western series Cimarron City and Laramie, and on Rod Cameron's syndicated crime dramas City Detective and State Trooper. He played the title role in Sabata (1969) and Return of Sabata (1971), and co-starred with Jim Brown in an Italian-American co-production, Take a Hard Ride (1975). Cause of Death. After basic training and further training at the Naval Fleet Sound School, Van Cleef was assigned to a submarine chaser and then to a minesweeper, USS Incredible, on which he worked as a sonarman. The only drawback is Cleef's costar, who is stiff and actually seems too lanky in his part. It would be the first of many bad guys he would portray in westerns. Kramer originally wanted Van Cleef for the role of the deputy Harvey Pell, but as he wanted Van Cleef to have his "distinctive nose" fixed, Van Cleef declined the role in favor of the part of the silent gunslinger Jack Colby. He soon began to acquire regular character parts, mainly as a heavy, and made his mark when, along with Lee Van Cleef and Sheb Wooley, he played one of the "three men … 64 years. Lee Van Cleef. He was cast three times, including the role of Rocky Hatch in the episode "Greed Rides the Range" (1952), of another syndicated Western series, The Range Rider. It's much harder to find a good villain. Biography - A Short Wiki. Lee Van Cleef was certainly a proud pipe smoker. Bad guys have always been my bag . He was then cast mostly in villainous roles, due to his sharp cheeks and chin, piercing eyes, and hawk-like nose,[6] from the part of Tony Romano in Kansas City Confidential (1952),[8] culminating 14 years later in Sergio Leone's The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966). Remains:Buried, Forest Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery, Hollywood Hills, CA. He also had distant French, Swedish, Belgian (Flemish), English, and German, roots. Van Cleef was interred in Forest Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery in Hollywood Hills, with the following inscription on his grave marker: “BEST OF THE BAD.” Jim Beaver , Other Works He collapsed in his home in Oxnard, California, from a heart attack. Also, did Eli Wallach play the Ugly? That same year, he guest-starred on the CBS Western series, Brave Eagle. His performance was seen by Stanley Kramer, who cast him as henchman Jack Colby in High Noon (1952), a role that brought him great recognition despite the fact that he had no dialogue. He played a villainous henchman of Lee Marvin's title character in the 1962 John Ford movie The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance. He served in the U.S. Navy aboard minesweepers and sub chasers during World War II. Van Cleef played different characters on four episodes of ABC's The Rifleman, with Chuck Connors, between 1959 and 1962, and twice on ABC's Tombstone Territory. Lee Van Cleef Actor | Escape from New York One of the great movie villains, Clarence Leroy Van Cleef, Jr. was born in Somerville, New Jersey, to Marion Lavinia (Van Fleet) and Clarence LeRoy Van Cleef, Sr. His parents were both of Dutch ancestry. [18] His final marriage was to Barbara Havelone in 1976, who survived him. 1948), and David. Here is all you want to know, and more! A ... Age at Death: 64: Cause of Death: Heart attack: Link(s) with more info: (opens in a new window) In 1965, Sergio Leone cast Van Cleef, whose career had yet to take off, as a main protagonist alongside Clint Eastwood in For a Few Dollars More. His parents were Clarence L. Van Cleef and Marion L. Van Fleet Van Cleef. Speaking of the Wild West: Actor LEE VAN CLEEF faced off against Clint Eastwood in two famous “spaghetti westerns”:For a Few Dollars More (1965) and The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (1966). Lee’s father, a WWI veteran who served two years in Europe, worked as an accountant and bank cashier. Lee Van Cleef was hitched multiple times in his lifetime. In 1959, Van Cleef appeared as Luke Clagg in the episode "Strange Request" of the NBC Western series Riverboat starring Darren McGavin, as Jumbo Kane in the episode "The Hostage" on the CBS Western series "Wanted Dead or Alive" starring Steve McQueen, and in an episode of Maverick titled "Red Dog" in 1960 starring Roger Moore and John Carradine. He was buried at Forest Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery, Hollywood Hills, California, with an inscription on his grave marker referring to his many acting performances as a villain: "BEST OF THE BA… The 64 year old's death was attributed to a heart attack, with throat cancer as the … My story suddenly turned into a rags-to-riches saga. He was married to Patsie Ruth from 1943 to 1960, to Joan Drane from 1960 to 1974, and to Barbara Havelone from 1976 until 1989, the year of his death. In 1960, when Lee married his second wife Joan Miller. Van Cleef starred as minor villains and henchmen in various Westerns, including The Tin Star and Gunfight at the O.K. . A resulting knee injury made his physicians think that he would never ride a horse again. They adopted a daughter, Denise. In 1961, he played a role on episode 7 ("The Grave") of the third season of The Twilight Zone. In the 1980s he moved easily into action and martial-arts movies and starred in The Master (1984), a TV series featuring almost non-stop martial arts action. When starring in westerns, his characters frequently use customized firearms, such as rifles and pistols with increased precision, fire rate, ammo magazine and additional muzzles. Roberts." |  The real Lee Van Cleef, Died:16-Dec-1989. . For his film debut, he appeared, solo, in the opening pre-title shots of the classic "High Noon" (1952)." High Noon [Jack Colby]: Shot to death by Gary Cooper in a stable at the end of a chase/shoot-out. Lee Van Cleef (1925 - 1989) . [11], In 1955, he was cast twice on another syndicated Western series, Annie Oakley. He was hetero-chromatic with one eye being blue and the other green. Lee Van Cleef Health, Cause of Death : The film symbol died in his California home at 64 years old. [16] In 1984, he was cast as a ninja master in the NBC adventure series The Master, but it was canceled after thirteen episodes. [14] His film characters died in many of his Westerns and gangster portrayals. Being born with a pair of beady eyes was the best thing that ever happened to me. Appeared in two films nominated for Best Picture Oscar: Like fellow western baddie, Jack Elam, he had worked as an accountant. At age 17, he obtained his high school diploma early in his senior year at Somerville High School[3] in order to enlist in the United States Navy in September 1942.[4]. Lo played Ho Chiang in the 1974 film The Stranger and the Gunfighter , alongside Lee Van Cleef . Van Cleef started out as an accountant. He also had been awarded the Bronze Star and the Good Conduct Medal. An audition for a professional role led to a touring company job in "Mr. Roberts". Was the inspiration for the character Revolver Ocelot in the "Metal Gear" series of games. In the 1980s he moved easily into action and martial-arts movies and starred in The Master (1984), a TV series featuring almost non-stop martial arts action. Van Cleef is interred at Forest Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery, Hollywood Hills, California, with an inscription on his gravestone referring to his many "heavy" roles: BEST OF THE BAD. Lately, when directors and producers see the bloody thing, they ask me to wear it on camera. In 1963, he appeared on Perry Mason (episode: "The Case of the Golden Oranges"). He protested that he needed to give his employer two weeks' notice, only to be told that he started on Monday or didn't start at all. Van Cleef later had a supporting role in John Carpenter's cult film Escape from New York (1981). One of these scouts later took him to New York City talent agent Maynard Morris of the MCA agency, who then sent him to the Alvin Theater for an audition. The next biggest part was that of the boxer, Joe Pendleton, in the play Heaven Can Wait. Ended up in a bar in Hull, He collapsed in his home in Oxnard, California, from a heart attack. (Thanks to Mac and Betty)Kansas City Confidential (1952) [Tony Romano]: Shot to death by the mortally-wounded Preston Foster, just as Lee tries to kill John Payne. Profession. He was of partial Dutch ancestry. [6/12/81 interview in The Cleveland Plain Dealer, on his pierced left ear] I started wearing it when I was a kid in the Navy. Van Cleef, born of partial Dutch, English and German ancestry on January 9, 1925, in Somerville, New Jersey,[2][self-published source?] In 1960, he appeared as a villainous swindler in the Bonanza episode, "The Bloodline" (December 31, 1960) and also made an appearance on Gunsmoke. Image: Van Cleef in “Death Rides a Horse”, in 1969 Gender:Male. Real violence turns you off because you know it's not the thing to do. His death certificate gave throat cancer as a secondary cause of death. He also appeared in an episode of the ABC/Warner Brothers Western series The Alaskans.[13]. I could play a role in a tuxedo and people would think I was rotten. After suffering serious injuries in a car crash, Van Cleef had begun to lose interest in his declining career by the time Sergio Leone gave him a major role in For a Few Dollars More. In 1958, he was cast as Deputy Sid Carver in the episode "The Great Stagecoach Robbery" of another syndicated Western series, Frontier Doctor, starring Rex Allen. He was missing the last joint of his middle finger, a disfigurement prominently featured in the climactic gunfight of. Actor who starred as the villainous Angel Eyes in the classic 1966 film The Good, The Bad and the Ugly. Movies are full of leading men, most of whom aren't working. A new career as a western hero (or at least anti-hero) opened up, and Van Cleef became an international star, though in films of decreasing quality. Interviewed in "Bad at the Bijou" by William R. Horner (McFarland, 1982). His recovery was long and difficult and halted his acting for a time. [17] His second marriage was to Joan Marjorie Drane, from 1960 to 1974. [20], In 1958, a severe car crash nearly cost Van Cleef his life and career. In 1955, he played one of the two villains in an episode of The Adventures of Champion the Wonder Horse. I have been told Van Cleef did", "Western Archivillain Lee Van Cleef Dies", "The Cinema Behind Star Wars: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly", "Primus – Lee Van Cleef (Official Music Video)", "Jonathan Green, Author: N is for Nathan Creed", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Lee_Van_Cleef&oldid=1004607333, Burials at Forest Lawn Memorial Park (Hollywood Hills), Somerville High School (New Jersey) alumni, United States Navy personnel of World War II, Short description is different from Wikidata, Wikipedia articles with style issues from March 2019, Articles with multiple maintenance issues, All Wikipedia articles written in American English, Pages using infobox military person with embed, Articles with self-published sources from February 2020, Articles with trivia sections from May 2018, Wikipedia articles with MusicBrainz identifiers, Wikipedia articles with PLWABN identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SNAC-ID identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SUDOC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, 'El Latigo' / Joe 'Utah Joe' / Rocky Hatch, "Treasure of Santa Dolores"; "Outlaw's Double"; "Greed Rides the Range", Joe Singer / 'Bull' Harper / Henchman Jango, "Desperado at Large"; "The Brown Pony"; "Stage to Estacado", "Snowshoe Thompson"; "The Hat That Won the West", Dan Maury / 'Stinger' / Wicks / Johnny Drako, "The Deadly Wait"; "The Prodigal"; "The Clarence Bibs Story"; "Death Never Rides Alone", Rad Meadows / Johnny Hooker / Ike Jeffords, "Old Flame"/"The Pariah"/"My Father, My Son", Wes Torrey / Dawson / 'Mac' Morgan / Caleb, ".45 Calibre"; "Killer Odds"; "Vengeance"; "The Stranger", "Trouble Street"; "A Man Called Ragen"; "Man Alone", "The Richest Man in Boot Hill", "Call to Glory", Lee Van Cleef's characters in the Sergio Leone movies inspired the creation of the characters Elliot Belt of the, Van Cleef served as visual inspiration for the characters of, This page was last edited on 3 February 2021, at 13:13. Cause of his death was a heart attack. "Spaghetti-Western" legend Lee Van Cleef co-starred. His cause of death was heart failure. The cause of his death was a heart attack. ], Despite suffering from heart disease from the late 1970s and having a pacemaker installed in the early 1980s,[22] Van Cleef continued to work in films until his death on December 16, 1989, at age 64. He slipped out of the limelight during the 1980s, appearing in films that did not have a wide release. Van Cleef started out as an accountant. If you show violence realistic enough people don't want to do it. Clarence LeRoy Van Cleef, Jr. is part Generation Z (also known as iGeneration). Lee Van Cleef was born on January 9, 1925, in Somerville, New Jersey, US to Clarence LeRoy Van Cleef and Marion Van Fleet (née Levinia). And just in time, too. Van Cleef was cast with Pippa Scott and again with Chuck Connors in the 1960 episode "Trial by Fear" of the CBS anthology series The DuPont Show with June Allyson. He died of a heart attack in December 1989 and was buried at Forest Lawn in the Hollywood Hills. The play was Mister Roberts. [7], Van Cleef's screen debut came in High Noon. Van Cleef, shortening his performing name to Lee, appeared in some B-grade science fiction films but carved out his true niche in westerns, both on television and in cinema. In 1958, he was cast as Ed Murdock, a rodeo performer trying to reclaim the title in the event at Madison Square Garden in New York City, on Richard Diamond, Private Detective.[12]. He guest-starred in an episode of John Bromfield's syndicated crime drama Sheriff of Cochise. It’s always easy to tell a real pipe smoker from a fake by the way they hold their pipe in a scene; for example, it’s pretty obvious that Benedict Cumberbatch is absolutely faking his pipe smoking during the Victorian-age episode Sherlock Holmes and the Abominable Bride. He had three children from his first marriage: Alan (B. Children. [23] He collapsed in his home in Oxnard, California, from a heart attack. Doctors told him he would never be able to ride a horse again because of the injury. Very user friendly navigation and includes a search function and interactive quizzes. Van Cleef appeared six times between 1951 and 1955 on the children's syndicated Western series The Adventures of Kit Carson, starring Bill Williams. The latter film ends with a gunfight, in which Van Cleef is clearly seen to be missing the last joint of the middle finger on his right hand. [15] Leone then chose Van Cleef to appear again with Eastwood, this time as the primary antagonist, Angel Eyes, in the now seminal Western The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966). He started as a stuntman in the 1930s and his first appearance on screen was in San Francisco (1936). Who is Lee Van Cleef’s Spouse? One of the great movie villains, Clarence Leroy Van Cleef, Jr. was born in Somerville, New Jersey, to Marion Lavinia (Van Fleet) and Clarence LeRoy Van Cleef, Sr. His parents were both of Dutch ancestry. [5], After leaving the Navy, Van Cleef read for a part in Our Town at the Little Theater Group in Clinton, New Jersey and received his first stage role. By virtue of his deployments, Van Cleef also qualified for the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal, the American Campaign Medal, and the World War II Victory Medal. Lee Van Cleef in his only interview with Johnny Carson. What happened to it? Minus all of their teeth". AKAClarence Leroy Van Cleef, Jr. Born:9-Jan-1925. was the son of Marion Lavinia Van Fleet and Clarence LeRoy Van Cleef. Throat cancer was listed as a secondary cause of death. For a decade he was typecast as a minor villain, his "sinister" features overshadowing his acting skills. In 1952, he was cast in the episode "Formula for Fear" of the Western aviation series Sky King. I've worn it, off and on, ever since. Lee Van Cleef is exceptional in Death Rides a Horse. Was on the short list of actors under consideration for arms dealer. Lo died in Shenzhen on Saturday morning at around 10 am after suffering a heart attack. He was married three times. Lo starred in the 1972 cult classic King Boxer a.k.a. His hawk nose and steely, slit eyes seemed destined to keep him always in the realm of heavies, but in the mid 1960s Sergio Leone cast him as the tough but decent Col. Mortimer opposite Clint Eastwood in For a Few Dollars More (1965). This injury plagued Van Cleef for the rest of his life and caused him great pain. Van Cleef played a sentry on an episode of the ABC sitcom The Real McCoys, with Walter Brennan. [6] From there, he continued to meet with the group and audition for parts. Lee Van Cleef in The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. 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