Ivan Linow

Ivan Linow (born Jānis Linaus; November 21, 1888 – November 11, 1940), also known as Jack Linow, was a Latvian-born American wrestler, who became a character actor in American films during the silent and early sound film eras.

Ivan Linow
Ivan Linow about to fight Joel McCrea in 1930's The Silver Horde.
Jānis Linaus

(1888-11-21)November 21, 1888
DiedNovember 21, 1940(1940-11-21) (aged 52)
London, England, United Kingdom
OccupationWrestler, actor
Years active1918–1935


Born in Latvia on November 21, 1888,[1] Linow began wrestling in the United States in 1918. Between 1918 and 1933, he participated in 92 matches, with a record of 38 wins and 23 losses.[2] Linow's monikers in the ring were "the Cossack" and the "Russian Man-Eater".[3] During his wrestling career, he faced other notable wrestlers of that era, such as Joe Stecher and Ed Lewis.[4]

Using his popularity as a wrestler, Linow entered the film industry during the 1920s, his first film being Cappy Ricks (1921).[5] In his fifteen-year acting career, he appeared in over forty films in supporting and bit parts.[6][7] While appearing in films, Linow continued his wrestling career. In his final match in July 1931, under the pseudonym Jack Leon, he defeated Young Sandow.[4][8] Linow retired from films two years later, in 1935; his final film was The Black Room, starring Boris Karloff.[9] On November 21, 1940, while in London, Linow died of a heart attack.[10]


(Per AFI database)[6][7]


  1. "Ivan Linow". Movie-Like.com. Retrieved January 1, 2015.
  2. "Ivan Linow". WrestlingData.com. Retrieved January 1, 2015.
  3. "Toe Hold To Be Barred In Linow-Lewis Match". Norfolk Virginian-Pilot. April 24, 1916. Retrieved January 1, 2015.
  4. "Ivan Linow Details". WrestlingData.com. Retrieved January 1, 2015.
  5. "Cappy Ricks". American Film Institute. Retrieved January 1, 2015.
  6. "Ivan Linow". American Film Institute. Retrieved January 1, 2015.
  7. "Ivan Linow: Complete Filmography". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved January 1, 2015.
  8. "The match Ivan Linow fought @ United States of America in the year 1933". WrestlingData.com. Retrieved January 1, 2015.
  9. "The Black Room". American Film Institute. Retrieved January 1, 2015.
  10. "Ivan Linow, biography". AllMovie. Retrieved January 1, 2015.

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