Wesley Barry (August 10, 1907 – April 11, 1994) was an American child actor in silent motion pictures. He later became a producer and director of both film and television. As a director, he was sometimes billed as Wesley E. Barry.
Early life and career
Born in Los Angeles, Barry was seven years old when a young director was attracted by his facial features, and put him to work at the old Kalem Studios. He was not noted for his freckles until Marshall Neilan cast him in Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm, with his freckles uncovered (earlier producers had insisted that all subjects cover facial blemishes with grease paint).
Soon, Barry became a star in his own right, and 1920’s Dinty put him over with great success. Later screen productions which served him as starring vehicles are School Days, Rags to Riches, Heroes of the Street, and Warner specials. He was eleven years old when he appeared opposite Mary Pickford in Daddy-Long-Legs, and later, in Cecil B. DeMille’s Male and Female, opposite Gloria Swanson.
Barry made some minor film appearances in sound movies through the 1930s, and his last film appearance was in Ladies’ Day in 1943. In the 1940s, Barry became a director and producer of television and B-movies, such as The Steel Fist and Racing Blood. During this period, Barry also began a prolific career as an assistant director on many major motion pictures, including Roger Corman’s 1967 film The St. Valentine’s Day Massacre.
In 1962, Barry directed what has become arguably his most well-known film, The Creation of the Humanoids, a science fiction film starring Don Megowan. It depicts a future society in which robots, known derisively as “Clickers”, are persecuted by a fanatical human organisation named “The Order of Flesh and Blood”.
Wesley Barry directed his last film, The Jolly Genie, in 1963, and died on April 11, 1994 in Fresno, California.