Question of the Week: Do you have any actors in your family tree?

+15 votes
850 views

500px-Question_of_the_Week-72.pngDo you have any actors in your family? Tell us about them with an answer below. You can also use the question image to share your answer with friends and family on social media.

ago in The Tree House by Eowyn Walker G2G Astronaut (1.7m points)
edited ago by Eowyn Walker
James Garner (fka James Bumgarner), Maverick, Rockford Files, etc., is related on my mother's, paternal side.
Deanna, my husband is a distant relation (9th cousin, 1x removed) to James Garner, through the Womack line. James Garner's grandmother was a Womack. Though distant, it makes my husband happy.
I am related to Elvis Presley on his Mother's side and Lucille Ball on her Mother's side.  My son is a twin and looks more like Elvis than his twin.  My daughter looks like Lisa Marie.

I would love to share the "Comparison Photos" if I could, but I am not sure how to do that.
Daniel Boone is my first cousin 6x removed. Telitha Boone, is my 3rd great Grandmother.
My first cousin Glenn Frey of the Eagles who also did some acting was a wonderful man who is dearly missed.  My father and his mother were brother and sister.
Rebecca, Glenn Frey was one of my favorite singers. How wonderful that you were related to him and got to know him personally!
Ty Burrell (Modern Family) and I share a set of great grandparents...my 6th, his 5th.  What makes this really interesting to me is that I made this discovery via a clue I heard on Finding Your Roots when they researched his lineage and found an intriguing freed slave story.  The GGP we have in common were the white plantation owners of the Peace/Mask Plantation in NC.  Their son apparently impregnated many of the plantation's slaves, creating a web of mulatto cousins that is often hard to sort out.  

Another interesting note to this...   In my community in Spokane, WA, I recently met a young black man with the last name of Peace, and upon a short exchange, I found that tho he was adopted by his Peace family, they have a genealogical addict aunt who lives very close to the area where the before mentioned "freed slave" story converges.  So there's every chance she DOES connect to this lineage.  It excited me a lot to maybe connect with her and share our research and connection.  But here's the catch...    I've heard a lot of recent reference by folks of color (also on FYR, as well as this young man's reaction) having real derogatory feels about that likely plantation rapist, rather than the GGParents that I associate toward.  I'm really hesitant now to start that conversation, especially across miles, generations and culture (PNW vs Southern).  I'd really like to make the connection but wonder how to gracefully bridge the gap if the story rubs the wrong way.

The many cultures of our families...   

They will certainly stretch us...

Or give us wings!

33 Answers

+12 votes
My late father-in-law is related to Lillian Gish 1893-1993 stage and screen actress who was also a director and writer. Her film acting spanned 75 years, from 1912, in silent film shorts, to 1987. Gish was called "The First Lady of American Cinema."

Lillian Gish had no children, but my father-in-law descended from a related Gish.
ago by Frank Gill G2G Astronaut (2.2m points)
+13 votes
Besides my Daughter always acting innocent (LOL!), I don't recall bumping into any "Actors" in my tree, but you never know.

The closest to this for me would be when the movie "The Toy" (with Jackie Gleason and Richard Prior) was in search for a the part of the Child (of Jackie Gleason's Character) and was holding auditions at Toys-R-Us in the Bronx, NYC, I was about to go and audition, but something happened that prevented my going. DARN.. LOL!

When the movie "The Wanderers" was being filmed in the Bronx, NYC around the mid to late 70's, they actually filmed a scene in the alleyway behind my Grandmother's Apartment. My Mother, Grandmother and my Little Brother Kevin was watching it from the window. One of the actors wanted my little brother to be an extra, but he was a bit too scared (as he was only a few years old).

Anyways, it was fun remembering these... :-))

~Brian Kerr
ago by Brian Kerr G2G6 Pilot (263k points)
I worked as an extra on "The Toy" and invited my wife's brother, Jay Broyles, to come down from Arlington, Texas, to also do so, since he had been promising to visit us. He had played on the Oklahoma football teams that won 47 straight games and was still in good shape. He was chosen to play one of the bodyguards for the senator (played by Ray Spruell) in the garden party scene. He got upgraded and became eligible for the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) and went back home and became 2nd vice president of the Dallas SAG branch.

I got my SAG card a year later in the mini-series "Louisiana" and two years later played the shotgun-toting barman in the Stag Tavern scene in "North and South" (Book 1, Episode 3) from which I discovered that having a scene with Patrick Swayze brings one a lot of attention.
+12 votes
Yes, my first cousin twice removed Wayne Robson: https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Robson-2745

I believe he is best know for playing "Mike" on the Red-Green Show.
ago by Greg Webber G2G6 (8.2k points)
+10 votes
Well, that was interesting! Since my family name, Vander Bogart, sometimes appears as just Bogart, we have always wondered if we were related to the famous actor, Humphrey Bogart.

Once I saw that his family tree included people who lived in New York or New England before 1800, I was not surprised to find that I was related to him in several way--I counted at least four. But I kept looking at his Bogart ancestors, without finding a Bogart/ Vander Bogart connection. When I got to Isack Bogart, I had a surprise. Isack's mother was Cornelia DeLamater, born in  Manhattan, New York, in 1684. And Cornelia was related to my French Canadian ancestors. What was a French family doing in Manhattan in 1684? That is a good research project for another snowy day.

But yes, to answer your question, I am related to Humphrey Bogart.
ago by Joyce Vander Bogart G2G6 Mach 5 (52.8k points)
How cool is that? I'm also related to Humprey Bogart!

There's a great-something-grandfather Fulkerson who married a Maria Bogart awhile back and Maria and Humphrey share a common ancestor. So I'm not in his direct line, but we do share a bloodline as distant cousins.
Joyce, I've noticed by DNA that a cousin I have in Ontario has a 1700s Peter Van Der Bogart of New York City as an ancestor.
Thanks for noticing, John. There were a lot of VanderBogarts in New York, and there are some comprehensive genealogies, but we still haven't figured out how our family fits in.

According to the family Bible, our ancestor John was born 1 April 1783; according to census records, he was born in Columbia County. I think of this as a needle in a haystack rather than a brick wall. All I have to do is go through all the birth records in Columbia County until I find him. I already have already eliminated a few John Vanderbogarts who are not him.
+12 votes

I had never heard of him, but in working on WikiTree and Find a Grave, I discovered that I'm a distant cousin of silent film actor Norman (Kaiser) Kerry (Kaiser-1978), who was in The Hunchback of Notre Dame, The Phantom of the Opera, and many others in the 1920s. We have common ancestors among the early settlers of Nantucket Island.

The Nantucket connection also turns out to make a cousin of current actor William H. Macy, whose Nantucket ancestry was made public on the PBS show Finding Your Roots.

All part of what makes genealogy fascinating!

ago by John Hodson G2G6 Mach 1 (11.7k points)
+9 votes
It says "actor", not "famous actor".

My mother, Freda (Pilcher) Pilcher-358, was very active in "amateur dramatics" in the post war (W W II) period in London and Malvern (England).  I have several photographs of her in costume, and several play programs listing her.

Also, while it is not about a family-member-actor, the interior shots of the "country house" in Fatal Attraction were filmed in the house-next-door to the house I grew up in (and where my father still lived when the filming  was taking place.)  I remember watching the movie- when they showed water dripping through the ceiling into the kitchen, my first thought was "but that is not where the upstairs bathroom is".
ago by Janet Gunn G2G6 Mach 8 (89.7k points)
edited ago by Janet Gunn
+11 votes
Yes. I do.   Me. Alfred W Smith. Worked for horizons production out of Texas, Riley flinn  producer, movies I was in any given Sunday, Geronimo the Legend, Gettysburg, Sun of morning star, Return to lonesome Dove,  TV,  Rough Riders, and numerous documentaries and  crazy Horse.and Buffalo Gals. Far and Away.
ago by Alfred Smith G2G6 (6.8k points)
edited ago by Alfred Smith
+13 votes

Yes, my second cousin Elizabeth Lovelace Ross "Betsy Ross" is a Broadway Actress. She followed in the footsteps of her aunt (my first cousin once removed) Kitty Bellis, who was also a Broadway actress. Betsy has been in numerous television shows and New York plays. She just celebrated her 80th birthday on 7 Feb 2021.

ago by Alexis Nelson G2G6 Pilot (321k points)
Thank you for sharing this wonderful photo Alexis

Thank you Susan for the nice comment and star. They are having to do things in New York differently these days. This is an on line production that Betsy will be in starting next week.

+8 votes
My first cousin was once a background actor with one or two sentences in an episode of a series of one of the most popular Yugoslav actors. The actor died several years ago and was buried on the central cemetery in Belgrade. My grandma is also buried there. Last time we were on that cemetery we were surprised to find the urn grave of the actor now only a few steps away from the urn grave of my grandma. Mum immediately said: "Next time when I can't find the grave of my mother I will ask where (the actor) lies."
ago by Jelena Eckstädt G2G6 Pilot (613k points)
+11 votes
Two actor uncles, Dana Andrews and Steve Forrest. Thanks to WikiTree, I found that Jimmy Stewart and Elizabeth Taylor are cousins through that line. Dana would have been so amused by that. Jimmy Stewart was a good friend and he filmed "Elephant Walk" with Elizabeth Taylor.
ago by A Fabry G2G Crew (650 points)
edited ago by A Fabry
Jimmy Stewart was a wonderful American altogether!
+11 votes

Yes! My paternal grandfather, Yestin Jack Orme (1905 - 1962), aka Jack Deering. He was an interesting character who, sadly, I never met.

ago by Chris Orme G2G6 Mach 1 (12.4k points)
edited ago by Chris Orme
+10 votes
Yes!  A member of Shakespeare's Globe Theater troupe. Hilliard Swanston.  https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Swanston-187
ago by Beth Stephenson G2G6 Mach 1 (16.5k points)
+10 votes
My 2nd cousin was Georgia Bright Engel.  Was on Broadway and in The Mary Taylor Moore show as Ted Baxters wife.
ago by Patrick Modrell G2G Crew (660 points)
She went to church (Christian Science in NYC) with my parents.
She was a hoot on MTM Show! Loved her.
+11 votes
My husband, Robert Macnaughton, played Elliot’s older brother Michael in “E.T: The Exra-Terrestrial” among other films and many plays such as Master Harold and the Boys, Shakespeare in the Park’s Henry V, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Diviners, Talley and Son, to name a few.

I have appeared in “The Fighter” as Christian Bale and Mark Wahlberg’s sister, “Bad Lieutenant” with Harvey Keitel, “Trees Lounge” with Steve Buscemi, Ethan Hawke’s “Chelsea Walls” and a few others. As a child I was in a production of “Artuo Ui” with Al Pacino, the late great John Cazale, and Carol Kane. I’ve also been in some music videos, my favorites being Madonna’s “Papa Don’t Preach” and RUN DMC’s “Christmas in Hollis.”
ago by Bianca Hunter G2G Crew (530 points)
+9 votes

My mother, father and step-mother were all actors, as well as, accomplished in other areas of the theatre world.

My mother, Peggy Lobbin [Lobbin-1] was primarily known in her field as a dubbing actress. She had an exceptional voice, both in speaking and singing. She worked in radio, summer stock theatre in the 1950's, commercials, modeling, and was the lead in the TV series "Crime with Father." Her dubbing credits include The Emigrants, Fistful of Dollars, Children's Television Theatre, Ultraman, and many others.

My father, AJ Pocock, [Pocock-250] began as an actor then moved into stage management and then finally commercial and industrial theatre production. He was also on the board of the Actor's Fund of America.

My step-mother, Charlotte Fairchild, was an accomplished actress of stage, screen, and television. She was most well known for her voice and her work in musical theatre both on and off Broadway: Mame, Fiorella, Mr President, Damn Yankees, 42nd Street...

ago by Gina Jarvi G2G2 (2.3k points)
edited ago by Gina Jarvi
+10 votes
So far, it has only been royalty that I have found. I am searching to see if there is a connection between the actor Richard Boone and my  Boones.
ago by Toni Boone G2G6 (6.8k points)

Hi Toni! Supposedly I am "connected" to Richard Boone by marriage. My 2nd cousin, 2x removed was married to a Boone. (I have not profiled them on WikiTree yet.) Their son, my 3rd cousin 1x removed, Randy Boone, is an actor who appeared in The Virginian and Cimmaron Strip. His bio on Wikipedia says he is related to Richard Boone, Daniel Boone, Pat Boone, and Debby Boone, but I have never done the tracing for those relationships. I had the pleasure of meeting Randy and his mother at a family reunion, probably about twenty years ago now. So, if you are related to Richard Boone who is related to Randy Boone who is related to me, that would make us "cousins by marriage," right? Best wishes in your Boone research!

OH, that is so cool!  I  havent' found a connection  yet to those boones , but am looking.

Thank you
Nelda, I just compared our DNA   It looks to be a match. I will msg you the findings. I can post it up here for some reason
My son had a grade-school classmate named Becky Boone. Once she came to class with her famous ancestor's coonskin cap. It was in a special case so that no one could touch it, but everyone got to look.
+9 votes

Gregan McMahon MBE, Australia 1874 - 1941, my Great Uncle.http://adb.anu.edu.au › biography › mcmahon-gregan-7420 

ago by Brian Phelan G2G1 (1.5k points)
+8 votes

The actor and singer Tony Martin was my second cousin. Unfortunately, I did not know of the relationship until after he died. His birth name was Alvin Morris.

https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Morris-24984

ago by Richard Saylor G2G3 (3.9k points)
edited ago by Richard Saylor
+7 votes

1940's starlet and pinup model Betty Grable is my 3rd cousin 3x removed; silent film actress Virginia Pearson is also my 3rd cousin 3x removed on the same line (and she and Betty Grable were second cousins).

ago by C Handy G2G6 Pilot (103k points)
+5 votes

“Actor” might be an exaggeration, but my great grandfather had bit parts in two films: Sit Tight and Cimarron, both in 1931. He had wild white hair and they liked his look, I guess.

ago by Robert Hvitfeldt G2G6 Pilot (140k points)

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