It has been a long time coming, but the day has finally arrived. Today, we’re going to be looking at the definitive list of the actors who have portrayed The Dark Knight, a character that has been a source of fascination for movie fans for nearly 80 years now.
Berenice Bejo was the first person to portray the role of the Dark Knight’s sidekick, Catwoman. She starred alongside Vincent Price in the classic 1939 film, starring him as the infamous Dr. Miles Granville and her as his lovely assistant, Joan Bennett. Bejo’s acting career was somewhat brief, but she did have a notable role in the film, Gilda, which was released in 1941. Unfortunately, it was a bit of a rare lead role in a war movie, and Bejo passed away in 1942.
Laurence Oliver was another English actor who portrayed the iconic role of the Dark Knight. He had a prolific career spanning more than 70 years, with more than 40 credits to his name. Most notably, he appeared in the original Dr. No in 1962, along with Sean Connery, who went on to play the role of James Bond three more times. Oliver’s role in Dr. No was relatively small, but it was great fun to watch him chew the scenery as he tried to impress the lovely Estelle Winch, who was played by the legendary Grace Kelly.
Jackie Cooper was another Englishman who took on the role of the Dark Knight in television’s Batman. The actor’s life was quite the Hollywood story, as he began his acting career after being turned down by several major Hollywood studios. Cooper’s first acting role was in the 1938 film, Dark Victory, in which he played a sailor who becomes an agent of the British Secret Service. In 1940, he went on to play the role of “Torchy” in an adaptation of the Dashiell Hammett novel The Big Sleep, and in 1941, he played “Charlie” in the film Confessions of a Nazi Spy. In 1942, Cooper was drafted into the Navy, and he subsequently enlisted in the US Army after the war. He ended up serving in the Military Policemen and attained the rank of captain. Cooper would go on to appear in numerous films and television shows, including M*A*S*H, Hawaii 5-0, Mannix, and Rookie of the Year. He passed away in 1980 at the age of 72.
Wendell Corey was yet another Englishman who played the role of the Dark Knight, and he did so on a number of occasions. He started his acting career by delivering lectures for the Stage Society, and in 1924, he landed his first role in London. Over the next four years, Corey would appear in several films, including the Alfred Hitchcock masterpiece, The Thirty-nine Steps (1935), in which he portrayed the hero, Sydney Carton. He also went on to star in Mr. Moto’s Last Fight, a 1936 film in which he played a motorcycle cop. Corey’s last appearance as the Dark Knight was in the 1956 film, The Perfect Murder, in which he played Charles Manning, a retired private investigator who gets roped into helping the police solve a murder by using his skills as a detective. He passed away in 1955 from a heart attack.
Michael Curtiz was a German-born film director and producer who rose to prominence in Hollywood during the silent era. He is most famous for his work on films such as Casablank and the Grand Tour, but he also directed numerous films in the 1940s, including the 1939 film, The Ransom of Red Scarlet, which starred Bette Davis and John Garfield. Curtiz died of a heart attack in 1942 at the age of 62.
William Dozier was an American film director, producer, and screenwriter, best known for his work on the Rocky and Star Trek television series. He began his career in Hollywood in the 1920s, and he went on to direct numerous television shows, including Batman, Land of the Lost, and The Incredible Hulk. Dozier passed away in 2002 at the age of 90.
Burt Lancaster was an American actor known for his large, expressive eyes and his impassioned acting style. The versatile performer began his acting career in the 1920s after moving to Hollywood at the age of 21. He went on to appear in some of the greatest films of all time, including The Gunfight at the O.K. Corral, Gentleman Joe Palooka, and Moulin Rouge. His last role before his death in 1958 was in the film The Leopard, which was based on the novel by Louis L’Amour.
There you have it, the complete list of actors who have portrayed The Dark Knight. As you can see, many of the actors had very short careers, even by Hollywood standards, so if you happen to be an actor looking to make a name for yourself, now would be a good time to do so.