Oscar O'Shea

Oscar O'Shea (8 October 1881 6 April 1960) was an American character actor with over 100 film appearances from 1937 to 1953.

Oscar O'Shea
O'Shea in The Bashful Bachelor (1942)
Born(1881-10-08)October 8, 1881
DiedApril 6, 1960(1960-04-06) (aged 78)
Years active1937-1953

Early years

O'Shea was born in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada.[1]


O'Shea was a comic actor who earned a million dollars but lost it all in the Great Depression. His first straight role came in a Federal Theatre Project production of It Can't Happen Here, a play based on the novel of the same name.[2]

O'Shea's first film was Captains Courageous (1937).[1]


Beginning in 1929, O'Shea operated the Oscar O'Shea Players repertory theater company in the Embassy Theatre in Ottawa, Canada.[3] He eventually ended the enterprise "to seek a field where his art would be more widely appreciated."[4] He then set up an operation in Chicago, "where he managed his own theatre and stock company during good and bad years."[4]


O'Shea died in Hollywood, California, in 1960 at age 78.[1]

Selected filmography


  1. Feramisco, Thomas M. (2007). The Mummy Unwrapped: Scenes Left on Universal’s Cutting Room Floor. McFarland. pp. 189–190. ISBN 9781476607924. Retrieved 7 July 2017.
  2. Quinn, Susan (2011). Furious Improvisation: How the WPA and a Cast of Thousands Made High Art out of Desperate Times. Bloomsbury Publishing USA. ISBN 9780802779717. Retrieved 7 July 2017.
  3. "Oscar O'Shea Players to Open Season of Repertoire Next Week" (The Ottawa Journal). Canada, Ottawa, Ontario. December 21, 1929. p. 13. Retrieved July 6, 2017 via Newspapers.com.
  4. "Oscar O'Shea Comes Back". The Ottawa Journal. Canada, Ottawa, Ontario. July 3, 1937. p. 20. Retrieved July 6, 2017 via Newspapers.com.
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