Vincent Beck (August 15, 1924 – July 24, 1984) was an American character actor with a deep voice who began his career as a stage actor. He was a prolific film and television actor who acted in films such as Santa Claus Conquers the Martians in 1964, The Spy in the Green Hat in 1967, The Scorpio Letters in 1967, The Pink Jungle in 1968 and in the same year, The Bamboo Saucer. He also was in Vigilante in 1983. He also appeared in at least 26 different television shows which included The Monkees, Get Smart, Daniel Boone, The Man from U.N.C.L.E., Bonanza, The Time Tunnel, and Lost In Space.
A prolific actor, he became recognized for his roles in on film early in his career. A portion of the television roles in his career consisted of villains, aliens and other interesting characters. From 1982, he was third vice president of Actors Equity. He was also president of the New York branch of the Screen Actors Guild, having held that position since 1983.
In 1946, he appeared on Broadway in A Flag Is Born on Broadway which marked his stage debut. Other stage roles included The World of Sholom Aleichem, The Merchant of Venice, Oliver, Irma la Douce, Gypsy and Bells Are Ringing.
In 1950, Beck was appearing as The Young Covey in the Sean O’Casey play, The Plough and the Stars which had been playing at the Hudson Guild Theater since Jan 30th. Along with Sy Travers and Osna Palmer, Beck was noted by The Billboard reviewer Dennis McDonald for his fine performance. In April, he appeared in James Barrie’s Peter Pan which had been playing at the Imperial Theater in New York since the 24th of that month. Beck was playing the part of Whibbles. In April 1951, he was playing the part of Teddy in the Clifford Odets comedy, Night Music, which had been playing at the ANTA Playhouse. Rod Steiger was also in the play.
In 1955, he appeared in the musical, Almost Crazy, which played at the Longacre Theater from June 20, 1955 to July 2.
In early 1965, Beck was playing the part of the evil Bill Sikes in the stage production Oliver. The reviewer in The Des Moines Register said he was “properly menacing as the all-time bad guy Sikes”.
Film and television career
Becks earliest film role was that of the evil Martian leader Voldar in the 1964 film Santa Claus Conquers the Martians which was directed by Nicholas Webster. In 1965 he appeared on Gilligan’s Island (S2/EP9 – as Russian cosmonaut Igor), in the Anybody Got a Zebra? episode of Mister Ed as Krona. He played the part of Benjamin Luger in The Man from U.N.C.L.E. film The Spy in the Green Hat which was released in 1967. He played the part of Zagorsky in the Frank Telford directed sci-fi film The Bamboo Saucer which was released in 1968.
1970s to 1980s
Beck appeared as Kevin Archer in an episode of Mannix in which Joe Mannix is targeted by a crime boss who thinks he knows too much about a missing corpse. The episode aired on January 30, 1971. Later that year Beck appeared in another episode of Mannix as Frankie West in Catspaw. The following year, he was in Mission Impossible as Bolt in the Double Dead episode which aired on 12 February 1972. The following year he was in The Magician, a series that starred Bill Bixby. The episode he appeared in was The Manhunters in which played the part of Stanley Owens. It aired on October 2, 1973. He appeared in The F.B.I. in the Deadly Ambition episode which aired in 1974 and the another episode of Mannix, Hardball which aired the following year in 1975. He played the part of Trilling in the Michael Winner directed 1979 film, Firepower which starred Sophia Loren and James Coburn.
His last acting role was that of the corrupt Judge Sinclair in the William Lustig directed Vigilante. A film about an average man who becomes a vigilante after his wife and young son are murdered by a street gang. It also starred Fred Williamson, Robert Forster, Joe Spinnell and Woody Strode. It was released in 1983. Judge Sinclair has obviously got a share in the bribe-money which lawyer Einsberg (Played by Joe Spinnell) has received from the gang and the killers basically walk free.
Beck died at age 59 of cancer at his Manhattan home in July 1984.
|Santa Claus Conquers the Martians||1964||Voldar||Nicholas Webster|
|The Spy in the Green Hat||1967||Benjamin Luger||Joseph Sargent|
|The Scorpio Letters||1967||Paul Fretoni||Richard Thorpe||TV movie|
|Don’t Just Stand There||1968||Painter||Ron Winston|
|The Pink Jungle||1968||Sanchez||Delbert Mann|
|The Bamboo Saucer||1968||Zagorsky||Frank Telford|
|…And Justice for All.||1979||Officer Leary||Norman Jewison|
|Vigilante||1983||Judge Sinclair||William Lustig||(final film role)|
|Title||Episode #||Role||Director||Year||Notes #|
|Mister Ed||Anybody Got a Zebra?||Krona||Arthur Lubin||1965||Aired 17 October 1965|
|Gilligan’s Island||Nyet, Nyet, Not Yet||Igor||Jack Arnold||1965||Aired 18 November 1965|
|Get Smart||My Nephew the Spy||Salesman||Bruce Bilson||1965||Aired 4 December 1965|
|Gunsmoke||Outlaw’s Woman||Coley Martin||Mark Rydell||1965||Aired 11 December 1965|
|Honey West||Rockabye the Hard Way||John raven||Bill Colleran||1965||Aired 24 December 1965|
|Daniel Boone||Gabriel||Gabriel||Gerd Oswald||1966||Aired 6 January 1966|
|The Man from U.N.C.L.E.||The Birds and the Bees Affair||Vince Maples||Alvin Ganzer||1966||Aired 21 January 1966|
|The Girl from U.N.C.L.E.||The Prisoner of Zalamar Affair||Kassim||Herschel Daugherty||1966||Aired 20 September 1966|
|Bonanza||The Pursued: Part 1||Grant Carbo||William Witney||1966||Aired 2 October 1966|
|Bonanza||The Pursued: Part 2||Grant Carbo||William Witney||1966||Aired 9 October 1966|
|The Man from U.N.C.L.E.||The Concrete Overcoat Affair: Part I||Luger||Joseph Sargent||1966||Aired 25 November 1966|
|T.H.E. Cat||King of Limpets||Vasco||Boris Sagal||1966||Aired 9 December 1966|
|The Monkees||Royal Flush||Sigmund||James Frawley||1966||Aired 12 September 1966|
|The Monkees||Son of a Gypsy||Marco||James Frawley||1966||Aired 26 December 1966|
|Iron Horse||Hellcat||Lanker||Samuel Fuller||1966||Aired 26 December 1966|
|The Time Tunnel||Merlin the Magician||Wogan||Harry Harris||1967||Aired 17 March 1967|
|The Time Tunnel||Town of Terror||Alien Leader||Herschel Daugherty||1967||Aired 7 April 1967|
|Lost in Space||Hunter’s Moon||Megazor||Don Richardson||1967||Aired 27 September 1967|
|The Monkees||The Card Carrying Red Shoes||Ivan||James Frawley||1967||Aired 6 November 1967|
|Adam-12||Log 11: It’s Just a Little Dent, Isn’t It?||Joe Claver||Hollingsworth Morse||1968||Ared 5 October 1968|
|The Wild Wild West||The Night of the Pelican||Corporal Simon||Alex Nicol||1968||Aired 27 December 1968|
|The Immortal||Pilot||Locke||Joseph Sargent||1969||Aired 30 September 1969|
|Title||Episode #||Role||Director||Year||Notes #|
|The F.B.I.||The Dealer||Frank Brokaw||Jesse Hibbs||1970||Aired 22 February 1970|
|Mannix||The Crime That Wasn’t||Kevin Archer||Barry Crane||1971||Aired 30 January 1971|
|Alias Smith and Jones||The Great Shell Game||Steward||Richard Benedict||1971||Aired 18 February 1971|
|Ironside||The Summer Soldier||Bedros Demirjian||Don Weis||1971||Aired 4 March 1971|
|Mannix||Catspaw||Frankie West||Harry Harvey Jr.||1971||Aired 8 December 1971|
|Mission: Impossible||Double Dead||Bolt||Barry Crane||1972||Aired 12 February 1972|
|Banyon||A Date with Death||Floyd Vender||Charles S. Dubin||1972||Aired 24 November 1972|
|The Magician||The Manhunters||Stanley Owens||Sutton Roley||1973||Aired 2 October 1973|
|Medical Center||The Torn Man||Lewie Tappie||Vincent Sherman||1972||Aired 11 October 1972|
|Medical Center||Woman for Hire||Jerry Sanders||Vincent Sherman||1973||Aired 19 November 1973|
|The F.B.I.||Deadly Ambition||Fisher||Don Medford||1974||Aired 17 March 1974|
|McMillan & Wife||Love, Honor and Swindle||Dan Hagstrom||Lou Antonio||1975||Aired 16 February 1975|
|Medical Center||Aftershock||Winchell||Joseph Pevney||1975||Aired 10 March 1975|
|Mannix||Hardball||Frank Sartino||Bill Bixby||1975||Aired 13 April 1975|
|The Invisible Man||The Fine Art of Diplomacy||Gregario||Sigmund Neufeld Jr.||1975||Aired 15 September 1975|
|Petrocelli||Mark of Cain||Parker||Leonard Katzman||1975||Aired 17 September 1975|