Actor Anthony Dexter

Anthony John “Tony” Dexter (born Walter Reinhold Alfred Fleischmann, January 19, 1913 – March 27, 2001) was an American actor known for his striking resemblance to silent film hero Rudolph Valentino, whom he portrayed in the 1951 biographic Valentino. Dexter sometimes used the pseudonym Walter Craig. He was known for portraying many real-life characters such as Captain John Smith, Captain William Kidd, Billy the Kid and Christopher Columbus.


Born Walter Reinhold Alfred Fleischmann in Nebraska, he earned an athletic scholarship to St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota and later earned a Master of Arts from the University of Iowa. During World War II he served in the U.S. Army’s Special Services in England earning the rank of Sergeant. After the war he performed on Broadway productions of The Three Sisters, Ah, Wilderness and The Barretts of Wimpole Street.

When preparing a film biography of Rudolph Valentino, Valentino, producer Edward Small chose Dexter for the lead from over 75,000 applicants and 400 screen tests. His incredible likeness to Valentino led to a contract with Columbia Pictures, but hampered him in achieving substantial film roles. When Dexter broke his contract with Edward Small due to the producer wanting to use him exclusively in Valentino-type roles, Dexter soon found that other producers wished him to do the same – for less money. He also made three unsuccessful television pilots, two of them swashbucklers.

In 1960, guest starred on Gene Barry’s TV Western Bat Masterson, playing a large and rare role as the episode long sidekick to Bat Masterson, Allesandro Valin in S2E35’s “The Big Gamble”.

After his movie career ended, Dexter, now known as Walter Craig, taught high school English, speech, and drama classes at Eagle Rock High School (circa 1968–1978) in the Los Angeles area. When he retired from teaching, Craig moved to Greeley, Colorado, where he lived until his death on March 27, 2001. He had two daughters, Kimberly and Claudia.


Year Title Role Notes
1950 Side Street Radio Clerk Uncredited
1951 Valentino Rudolph Valentino
1952 The Brigand Carlos Delargo / King Lorenzo III
1953 Captain John Smith and Pocahontas Captain John Smith
1954 Captain Kidd and the Slave Girl Captain William Kidd
The Black Pirates Capt. Zargo
1956 Fire Maidens of Outer Space Luther Blair
He Laughed Last Dominic Rodriguez
1957 The Parson and the Outlaw Billy The Kid
The Story of Mankind Christopher Columbus
1960 12 to the Moon Dr. Luis Vargas
1961 Three Blondes in His Life Charlie Walsh
The Phantom Planet Herron
1962 Married Too Young Lech
1965 Saturday Night Bath in Apple Valley
1967 Thoroughly Modern Millie Juarez

External Links

Actor Anthony Dexter – Wikipedia

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