Henry Corden

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Born

1/6/1920 , Montreal, Canada

Died

5/19/2005

Birth Name

Gender

Male

Biography:

Although versatile character actor and voice artist Henry Corden will be best remembered for providing the bellicose, gravel-toned rasp of cartoon immortal Fred Flintstone, he enjoyed a long and varied career even prior to that feat, which took up most of his later years. Born in Montreal, Canada, on January 6, 1920, his family moved to New York while he was still a child. He received his start on radio before heading off to Hollywood in the 1940s. He made his film debut as a minor thug in the Danny Kaye vehicle The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (1947) and continued in that same vein, often in unbilled parts. A master at dialects, he was consistently employed as an ethnic Middle Eastern heavy or streetwise character (club manager, salesman) in 1950s costumed adventures or crime yarns, both broad and serious. He seldom made it into the prime support ranks, however, with often broad, mostly insignificant parts in Abbott and Costello in the Foreign Legion (1950), The Asphalt Jungle (1950), Viva Zapata! (1952), Scaramouche (1952), I Confess (1953), King Richard and the Crusaders (1954), Jupiter's Darling (1955) and The Ten Commandments (1956). On TV he could regularly be found on both drama ("Perry Mason," "The Untouchables) and light comedy ("My Little Margie," "Mister Ed"). Higher profile roles included Barbara Eden's genie father on the popular sitcom "I Dream of Jeannie," and the contentious landlord "Mr. Babbitt" on an episode of "The Monkees." Corden made a highly lucrative move into animation in the 1960s supplying a host of voices on such cartoons as "Jonny Quest," "The Jetsons," "Secret Squirrel," "Atom Ant," "Josie and the Pussycats" and "The Harlem Globetrotters." A well-oiled talent for the established Hanna-Barbera team, he reached his zenith after inheriting the voice of the studio's beloved boorish character Fred Flintstone after the show's original vocal owner, Alan Reed, passed away in 1977. Corden would go on to give life to Flintstone for nearly three decades on various revamped cartoon series, animated specials and cereal commercials. He was performing as Flintstone, in fact, until about three months prior to his death of emphysema at the age of 85 on May 19, 2005. He was survived by his second wife and two children from his prior marriage.