Barry Kelley

Barry Kelley (August 19, 1908 – June 5, 1991) was an actor on Broadway in the 1930s and 1940s and in films during the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s. The heavy-set actor created the role of Ike in Oklahoma! on Broadway.

Barry Kelley
Barry Kelley in The Asphalt Jungle
Born(1908-08-19)August 19, 1908
DiedJune 5, 1991(1991-06-05) (aged 82)
Woodland Hills, Los Angeles
California, U.S.
Years active1947–1969

Early years

The 6'4", 230-pound Kelley was born in Chicago, Illinois, and attended the Goodman School of Theatre there.[1]


Kelley began acting on the stage in the 1930s. His Broadway credits include Within the Gates (1934-1935), Parnell (1935-1936), Saint Joan (1936), Hamlet (1936-1937), The Wingless Victory (1936-1937), The Star-Wagon (1937-1938), Mamba's Daughters (1940), Strip for Action (1942-1943), Oklahoma (1943-1948), Loco (1946), Wonderful Journey (1946-1947) and Portrait in Black (1947).[2]


In films, Kelley often portrayed cops or judges in films, including Boomerang (his first film in 1947), Knock on Any Door, Ma and Pa Kettle, and The Asphalt Jungle. (Another source says, "His film debut was in the 1948 film noir Force of Evil.")[1] One of his best roles (for which he received third billing) was as the good-bad half brother of Joel McCrea in The Tall Stranger (1957). Kelley had an uncredited role as a police chief in the 1964 Frank Sinatra musical Robin and the Seven Hoods.


Kelley also appeared in dozens of television series. As in the movies, he was usually in westerns or crime dramas. In 1954 he appeared in a TV episode of The Lone Ranger entitled Texas Draw.

In 1959 Kelley appeared as Josh Teller on Lawman in the episode titled "The Outsider." In 1961 he appeared as Governor Johnson on the TV western Lawman in the episode titled "Owny O'Reilly." In 1961, he played Mr. Slocum, the boss of insurance agent Pete Porter, in 6 episodes of the CBS sitcom, Pete and Gladys, starring Harry Morgan and Cara Williams. In 1962, Kelley played Captain Donovan in the episode "The Parish Car" of the ABC drama series, Going My Way, starring Gene Kelly. He played the journalist George Hearst in the 1964 episode "The Paper Dynasty" of the syndicated series, Death Valley Days. In 1966 he played murderer Park Milgrave in the Perry Mason episode, "The Case of the Fanciful Frail".

His last television role was as Sheriff Vic Crandall in three episodes in 1967 and 1968 of the CBS sitcom, Petticoat Junction. (He had appeared on Petticoat Junction in the 1964 episode: "Kate Flat on Her Back", as Hurley Feasel. In the credits of that episode his last name was spelled Kelly.)

He also appeared occasionally as Alan Young's father-in-law on the 1960s sitcom Mister Ed.


Kelley died in 1991 at the age of 82 in Woodland Hills, California.

Broadway roles

Selected filmography


  1. Hannsberry, Karen Burroughs (November 2015). "Tidbits of Trivia". The Dark Pages. 11 (6): 22.
  2. "Barry Kelley". Playbill Vault. Retrieved 13 February 2016.
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