Ronald Radd

Ronald Radd (22 January 1929 – 23 April 1976) was a British television actor.

Ronald Radd
Born(1929-01-22)22 January 1929
Died23 April 1976(1976-04-23) (aged 47)
Toronto, Canada

Early work

Radd began as a stage actor in the Alexandra Theatre in Birmingham in the early-1950s, along with the likes of Leslie Sands and Edward Mulhare. In 1951 he appeared in a Lionel Hamilton production of The Romantic Young Lady at the Kettering Savoy.[1]

By 1954, Radd had graduated to the West End, where he was appeared with Kenneth Williams in two different productions in the Apollo Theatre in February 1956, The Buccaneer and The Boy Friend. Several months later, he was again with Kenneth Williams in a revival (at the Winter Garden) of Feydeau's Hotel Paradiso, but the billing went to Alec Guinness, who made a film of it years later, but not with Radd or Williams.

Television and film work

Radd gradually lost interest in theatre and broke into television in Ordeal by Fire in 1957 as a dastardly Frenchman, a single play costume piece involving Joan of Arc (played by Elizabeth Sellars) with Peter Wyngarde and Patrick Troughton whom he appeared with in the BBC production of A Tale Of Two Cities (1958).

Radd's next few TV credits actually took place across the Atlantic; this was less unusual then than now, with many of the American networks' studios still being located in New York, where many British actors were working in the theatre. Radd made a number of appearances in the NBC production The Shari Lewis Show between 1960 and 1963, and in 1960 appeared in the production of Eugene O'Neill's The Iceman Cometh directed by Sidney Lumet, who also directed him in the feature film adaptation of The Sea Gull (1968) and The Offence (1972). In between them he appeared in John Huston's The Kremlin Letter (1960). Radd worked alongside actors such as Robert Redford and Jason Robards. In that year, Radd also appeared in the NBC production of The Tempest playing the role of the drunkard Stefano, alongside Richard Burton who portrayed Caliban and Maurice Evans as Prospero. Radd had at least one guest appearance on Episode 2 of the TV series 'The Saint', which starred a young Roger Moore. The episode first aired Sept 26, 1963.

Radd featured in some 60 different TV shows between 1955 and 1976 including The Avengers, Danger Man, The Prisoner and Z-Cars. He memorably played "Hunter" in the one-off television play in ITV's "Armchair Theatre" strand, called A Magnum For Schneider. To protect his shady Government department ("The Section"), Hunter brings once-top operative and assassin David Callan (Edward Woodward) back to kill Schneider, an international illegal arms dealer. Hunter's plan is for Callan to be caught at the scene and take the blame, thus getting the job done yet clearing The Section of involvement. But Callan gets wise when first police, then colleague Toby Meres turn up at Schneider's apartment. Callan turns the tables by leaving Meres unconscious in his place. This led to the creation of the highly regarded spy series Callan with highly charged, antagonistic exchanges between Callan and Hunter among episode highlights. Radd appeared occasionally in later series of Callan.

In the sixth episode of Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased), "Just for the Record" in 1969, he played the role of the villain Pargiter, a deluded character intent on proving he was heir to the throne of England.

In 1971 he was nominated for Broadway's Tony Award as Best Supporting or Featured actor. He died in Toronto, Ontario, Canada of a brain haemorrhage in 1976 aged 47.

Selected filmography


  1. Northampton Mercury, 9 March 1951, p. 5; accessed via The British Newspaper Archive (subscription required); retrieved 22 November 2014.
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