|Occupation Actor, comedian|
Children Marcella Moreland
|Name Mantan Moreland|
Years active 1933-1973
|Born September 3, 1902 (1902-09-03) Monroe, Louisiana, U.S.|
Other names Man Tan MorelandManton MorelandMoreland
Died September 28, 1973, Hollywood, California, United States
Spouse Hazel Moreland (m. ?–1973)
Resting place Valhalla Memorial Park Cemetery
Movies King of the Zombies, The Scarlet Clue, Lucky Ghost, Charlie Chan in the Secret Se, Black Magic
Similar People Phil Rosen, William Beaudine, Jean Yarbrough, Victor Hugo Halperin, Stepin Fetchit
Cosmo jones crime smasher 1943 mantan moreland
Mantan Moreland (September 3, 1902 – September 28, 1973) was an American actor and comedian most popular in the 1930s and 1940s.
- Cosmo jones crime smasher 1943 mantan moreland
- Mantan Moreland Ben Carter
- Early years
- Later career and death
- Selected filmography
Mantan Moreland & Ben Carter
After "nearly ten years of working the small, small time", Moreland gained an opportunity in 1927 when he was hired as a comedian in Connie's Inn Frolics in Harlem. He next worked in the musical revue Blackbirds of 1928, which ran for 518 performances.
By the late 1920s, Moreland had made his way through vaudeville, working with various shows and revues, performing on Broadway and touring Europe. Initially, Moreland appeared in low-budget "race movies" aimed at African-American audiences, but as his comedic talents came to be recognized, he received roles in larger productions.
Monogram Pictures signed Moreland to appear opposite Frankie Darro in the studio's popular action pictures. Moreland, with his bulging eyes and cackling laugh, quickly became a favorite supporting player in Hollywood movies. He is perhaps best known for his role as chauffeur Birmingham Brown in Monogram's Charlie Chan series. At the height of his career, Moreland received steady work from major film studios, as well as from independent producers who starred Moreland in low-budget, all-black-cast comedies.
In 1940's Drums of the Desert, Moreland played a more serious role as the sergeant in charge of a squad of Senegalese Tirailleurs in French colonial Algeria alongside Ralph Byrd, known for appearing in Republic Pictures' Dick Tracy serials.
Moreland also toured America in vaudeville, making personal appearances in the nation's movie theaters. His straight man was Ben Carter, and they developed an excellent rapport and impeccable timing. Their "incomplete sentence" routines can be seen in two Charlie Chan pictures, The Scarlet Clue and Dark Alibi.
Moreland was offered fewer roles in the 1950s, when filmmakers began to reassess roles given to black actors. He was briefly considered as a possible addition to the Three Stooges when Shemp Howard died in 1955. Moreland returned to the stage and appeared in two all-black variety films in 1955, with Nipsey Russell standing in for Ben Carter as his straight man.
Later career and death
Moreland's last featured role was in the 1968 darkly humorous horror film Spider Baby, which was patterned after Universal's thrillers of the 1940s. After suffering a stroke in the early 1960s, Moreland took on a few minor comedic roles, working with Bill Cosby, Moms Mabley and Carl Reiner.
Moreland died of a cerebral hemorrhage in 1973 in Hollywood.
In 2004, Moreland was inducted into the National Multicultural Western Heritage Museum Hall of Fame.