Douglas Dick

Douglas Harvey Dick (November 20, 1920 – December 19, 2015) was an American actor and occasional screenwriter. His most famous role came in the 1948 film Rope. In 1971, Dick left the entertainment industry to work as a psychologist.[1]

Douglas Dick
Dick in a trailer for Rope (1948)
Douglas Harvey Dick

(1920-11-20)November 20, 1920
DiedDecember 19, 2015(2015-12-19) (aged 95)
OccupationActor & Screenwriter
Years active1946–1971
Ronnie Cowan
(m. 1959; div. 1960)

Peggy Chantler Dick
(m. 1963; her death 2001)

Early years

Dick was born in Charleston, West Virginia, and raised in Versailles, Kentucky.[2] He was the son of Mr. and Mrs. Gamble C. Dick, and he had a brother, Gamble C. Dick Jr.[3] He attended the University of Arizona and the University of Kentucky.[4]

Before he began working in films, Dick appeared in several shows in New York and was a model for the Conover agency.[5] One issue of Look magazine featured his picture on the cover.[3]

Military service

Dick did patrol duty with the United States Coast Guard and served as an aviator in the United States Navy, receiving a medical discharge from the latter.[4]


Dick's film debut was in The Searching Wind (1946).[2] Producer Hal B. Wallis met Dick in a Broadway agent's office as Dick was waiting for an interview. Wallis had Dick make a screen test in New York City. The test, along with those of five other prospects, was shown to 300 women employees of Wallis' studio. Dick was the clear favorite when the women were polled, and his role in The Searching Wind was the result.[6] His best known film role is Kenneth Lawrence in the Alfred Hitchcock film classic Rope (1948). Among his other notable films are The Red Badge of Courage (1951) and Something to Live For (1952).


On television, Douglas Dick is best known for his role as Carl Herrick in the television series, Waterfront (1954–1955).

Dick appeared once on Jim Davis' syndicated adventure series, Rescue 8. Additionally, he made two appearances on Lloyd Bridges' syndicated adventure series, Sea Hunt. He made seven guest appearances on Perry Mason throughout the duration of the CBS series from 1957 to 1966. In 1959, he played Fred Bushmiller in the title role in "The Case of the Watery Witness." In the 1962 episode, "The Case of the Glamorous Ghost," he played Walter Richey, a hotel clerk and the murderer. He played murderer Ned Chase in the 1963 episode, "The Case of the Elusive Element." He made his final appearance in 1965 as Ted Harberson in "The Case of the Wrathful Wraith."

Personal life

Dick married twice: first to Ronnie Cowan until their 1960 divorce, and second to television screenwriter Peggy Chantler from 1963 until her death in 2001. Dick retired from acting and became a psychologist in 1971.[7]


Dick died December 19, 2015, at his home in Los Angeles, California. He was 95.[2]


Television roles

With reduced film-work on offer to him he moved into television acting and guest-starred in the following:[7]


  1. Lamparski, Richard (1982). Whatever Became Of...?. New York: Crown Publishers. pp. 84–85. ISBN 051754346X.
  2. "Douglas Dick, 95". Classic Images (488): 44. February 2016.
  3. "Douglas Dick Is Guest Of Gamble C. Dicks Here". Arizona, Tucson. Tucson Daily Citizen. October 25, 1945. p. 12. Retrieved February 23, 2016 via
  4. "Douglas Dick Plays Lead In 'Hasty Heart'". Arizona, Tucson. Tucson Daily Citizen. April 14, 1945. p. 2. Retrieved February 23, 2016 via
  5. "Douglas Dick Is In Movie". Arizona, Tucson. Tucson Daily Citizen. June 29, 1946. p. 7. Retrieved February 23, 2016 via
  6. "Douglas Dick Gets a Job--Thanks to Studio's Girls". New York, Brooklyn. The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. May 12, 1946. p. 29. Retrieved February 23, 2016 via
  7. Happy birthday, Douglas Dick!,, Ivan G. Shreve, Jr.
  8. "Penn-to-Ritz for Saigon". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. March 10, 1948. Retrieved February 28, 2014.
  9. "Douglas Dick set". The Deseret News. January 25, 1952. Retrieved February 28, 2014.
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