Gene Reynolds

Gene Reynolds (born Eugene Reynolds Blumenthal, April 4, 1923) is an American actor, television writer, director, and producer. He was one of the producers of the TV series M*A*S*H.

Gene Reynolds
Reynolds in the film Gallant Sons
Eugene Reynolds Blumenthal

(1923-04-04) April 4, 1923
Cleveland, Ohio, USA
  • Actor
  • producer
  • writer
  • director
Years active1934–1999
Spouse(s)Bonnie Jones
(1967–76; divorced)
Ann Sweeny
(1979–present; 1 son)
Awards2 Primetime Emmy Awards
2 Directors Guild Awards
Writers Guild of America Award

Early life

Reynolds was born on April 4, 1923 to Frank Eugene Blumenthal and Maude Evelyn Blumenthal in Cleveland, Ohio. He was raised in Detroit, Michigan, where his father Frank was a businessman and entrepreneur.[1] The family relocated to Los Angeles, California, in 1934.[2]

Acting career

He made his screen debut in the 1934 Our Gang short Washee Ironee, and for the next three decades made numerous appearances in films such as In Old Chicago (1937), Captains Courageous (1937), Love Finds Andy Hardy (1938), Boys Town (1938), They Shall Have Music (1939), Santa Fe Trail (1940), Adventure in Washington (1941), Eagle Squadron (1942) and The Country Girl (1954) and on television series like I Love Lucy, Armstrong Circle Theatre, Whirlybirds, and Hallmark Hall of Fame. He was contracted to MGM between 1937 and 1940. He was in the U.S. Army during World War II.[2]

Behind the Scenes career

In 1957, Reynolds joined forces with Frank Gruber and James Brooks to create Tales of Wells Fargo for NBC. During the program's five-year run he wrote and directed numerous episodes. Additional directing credits include multiple episodes of Leave It to Beaver, The Andy Griffith Show, The Farmer's Daughter, My Three Sons, F Troop, Hogan's Heroes, Room 222, and Many Happy Returns.

As a writer, director, and producer, Reynolds was involved with two highly successful CBS series in the 1970s and early 1980s. Between 1972 and 1983, he produced 120 episodes of M*A*S*H, which he co-created with Larry Gelbart, and for which he also wrote 11 episodes and directed 24. During that same period, he produced 22 episodes of Lou Grant, for which he wrote (or co-wrote) five episodes and directed 11.

Reynolds has been nominated for twenty-four Emmy Awards and won six times, including Outstanding Comedy Series for M*A*S*H and Outstanding Drama Series twice for Lou Grant, which also earned him a Humanitas Prize. He won the Directors Guild of America Award for Outstanding Direction of a Comedy Series twice for his work on M*A*S*H and the Directors Guild of America Award for Outstanding Direction of a Drama Series once for his work on Lou Grant.

Reynolds was elected President of the Directors Guild of America in 1993, a post he held for four years until 1997.

Personal life

Reynolds was married to actress-turned author Bonnie Jones, who appeared in five episodes of M*A*S*H as Lt. Barbara Bannerman, from 1972 until 1975, when the couple divorced. He and his current wife, actress Ann Sweeny, who also appeared on M*A*S*H as Nurse Carrie Donovan in two episodes, married in 1979 and have one son, Andrew Reynolds.


Year Title Role Notes
1934 Babes in Toyland Boy Uncredited
1935 Transient Lady Young boy Uncredited
The Calling of Dan Matthews Tommy's friend Uncredited
1936 Too Many Parents Cadet Uncredited
Sins of Man Karl Freyman as a boy
Thank You, Jeeves! Bobby Smith
1937 Captains Courageous Boy in print shop Uncredited
The Californian Ramon as a child
Madame X Raymond Fleuriot (age 12–14) Uncredited
Heidi Minor Role Uncredited
Thunder Trail Richard Ames (age 14) Uncredited
1938 In Old Chicago Dion O'Leary as a boy
Of Human Hearts Jason Wilkins as a child
Love Finds Andy Hardy Jimmy McMahon
The Crowd Roars Tommy McCoy as a boy
Boys Town Tony Ponessa
1939 The Spirit of Culver Carruthers
The Flying Irishman Clyde 'Douglas' Corrigan
They Shall Have Music Frankie
Bad Little Angel Tommy Wilks
1940 The Blue Bird Studious boy
Edison, the Man Jimmy Price
The Mortal Storm Rudi Roth
Gallant Sons Johnny Davis
Santa Fe Trail Jason Brown
1941 Andy Hardy's Private Secretary Jimmy McMahon
The Penalty Roosty
Adventure in Washington Marty Driscoll
1942 Junior G-Men of the Air Eddie Holden
The Tuttles of Tahiti Ru
Eagle Squadron The kid
1948 Jungle Patrol Lt. Marion Minor
1949 The Big Cat Wid Hawks
Slattery's Hurricane Control tower operator Uncredited
1953 99 River Street Chuck
1954 Prisoner of War Capt. Richard Collingswood Uncredited
Down Three Dark Streets Vince Angelino
The Country Girl Larry
The Bridges at Toko-Ri C.I.C. officer
1955 The McConnell Story B-17 pilot Uncredited
1956 Diane Montecuculli
The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit Soldier Uncredited


  1. "Archive of American Television Interview with Gene Reynolds, Chapter 1". Archive of American Television. August 22, 2000. Retrieved November 8, 2011.
  2. "Two Veterans of Show Business Reunited on 'Hennesey" Series". Jefferson City Post Tribune. March 4, 1960. p. 13. Retrieved July 7, 2016.


  • Goldrup, Tom and Jim (2002). Growing Up on the Set: Interviews with 39 Former Child Actors of Film and Television. McFarland & Co. pp. 242–250. ISBN 1476613702.
  • Holmstrom, John (1996). The Moving Picture Boy: An International Encyclopaedia from 1895 to 1995. Norwich: Michael Russell, p. 116.
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