Peter Lorre

Peter Lorre


6/26/1904, Rózsahegy, Austria-Hungary [now Ruzomberok, Slovakia]



Birth Name

László Löwenstein


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Short, chubby-faced actor who created an international sensation in 1932 with his portrayal of a child murderer in the German film classic "M". Lorre would leave Germany shortly thereafter upon the assumption of power by the Nazis. He first went to England where Hitchcock gave him work in…more


Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

    • Fellow horror actor Vincent Price read the eulogy at Lorre's funeral.

    • Lorre stood 5 feet, 5 inches tall.

    • Lorre was a pallbearer at the funeral of Mad Love co-star Colin Clive.

    • Lorre is buried in the Hollywood Forever Cemetary in Los Angeles.

    • Lorre bowed out of the 1956 film The Black Sleep in which he was slated to appear with horror genre legends Bela Lugosi, Basil Rathbone, and Lon Chaney, Jr. His part in the movie was taken by Akim Tamiroff.

    • Lorre has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. It is located at 6619 Hollywood Boulevard.

    • One of Peter's favorite leisure time activites was horseback riding.

    • Lorre filed for and received a discharge in Bankruptcy in 1949.

    • Lorre once filed suit to prevent a man from changing his name legally to Peter Lorie.

    • Was close friends with famed playwright Berthold Brecht.

    • Had a cameo in the 1964 beach movie Muscle Beach Party. The movie was released after Lorre's death.

    • Lorre played a clown in the 1959 film The Big Circus in which he co-starred for the first time with Vincent Price.

    • George Raft reportedly slugged Lorre on the set of Background to Danger because he thought Lorre was deliberately trying to steal a scene from him.

    • Future superstar Jack Nicholson co-starred with Lorre in The Raven.

    • Though Lorre and Sydney Greenstreet appeared in eight films together they had no scenes with each other in Casablanca, the best known film they made with each other.

    • The effects of diabetes and morphine addiction led to a huge weight gain for Lorre during the last decade of his life.

    • Charlie Chaplin once called Lorre the best actor in the world.

    • Lorre and M director Fritz Lang grew to detest one another over the course of filming and rarely socialized once both men moved to Hollywood.

    • Lorre once appeared on an episode of You Bet Your Life which starred Groucho Marx. Lorre gave a plug for his new movie entitled Five Weeks in a Balloon. Groucho then asked Lorre if he was playing the part of the balloon in reference to Lorre's portly figure.

    • Lorre became friends with Barbara Eden when they appeared together in the movie Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea.

    • Appeared in an episode of Wagon Train entitled The Alexander Portlass Story.

    • Was one of numerous Hollywood stars to make a cameo appearance in the 1956 film Around the World in 80 Days.

    • Co-starred in an episode of Route 66 entitled Lizard's Legs and Owlet's Wings with fellow horror genre actors Boris Karloff and Lon Chaney, Jr. All three appeared as themselves.

    • He was close friends with fellow horror genre actors Boris Karloff and Vincent Price appearing with both in the films Comedy of Terrors and The Raven.

    • His last film role was as a director in the Jerry Lewis farce The Patsy. Lorre despised Lewis with whom he had previously appeared in The Sad Sack. He took the role because he needed the money.

    • Lorre once joked that all anyone needed to imitate him was a bedroom voice and a pair of hard boiled eggs.

    • Despite being an ethnic Hungarian, Lorre played a Japanese detective in the Mr. Moto series of movies during the 1930's.

    • On the set of My Favorite Brunette, Lorre and Lon Chaney, Jr. were playing with Dorothy Lamour's young son when Bob Hope joined them. The young toddler began bawling upon noticing Hope's presence. Hope then proclaimed himself the world's greatest horror star ahead of Chaney and Lorre because he had apparently frightened the young child whereas they had not.

    • Lorre appeared in five films with Humphrey Bogart: The Maltese Falcon, All Through the Night, Casablanca, Passage to Marseilles, and Beat the Devil.

    • Lorre's character in "M" whistles a sinister tune whenever he appears on screen. In reality, Lorre could not whistle and director Fritz Lang did the whistling.

    • Lorre appears briefly in the novel Catcher in the Rye when he is spotted on the streets of New York by protagonist Holden Caulfield.

    • According to Hollywood lore, Lorre was the one who convinced Humphrey Bogart to marry Lauren Bacall despite their age differences. He reportedly told Bogart that "Five good years are better than no years at all."

    • Lorre's second wife Kaaren Verne and her second husband adopted Lorre's daughter, Catharine, when her mother (Lorre's third wife) passed away.

    • His most famous TV guest shot was an episode of Alfred Hitchcock Presents entitled Man from the South in which Lorre co-starred with Steve McQueen.

    • Ironically, Lorre's divorce hearing from his third wife, Annemarie Brenning, was scheduled on the day he died.

    • Lorre was married to Celia Lovsky from 1934-1945, to Kaaren Verne from 1945-50, and to Annemarie Brenning from 1953 until his death.

    • Did not get along well with fellow Hungarian Bela Lugosi when they appeared together in the 1940 film You'll Find Out.

    • Lorre appeared in eight films with Sydney Greenstreet.

    • Lorre's daughter, Catharine, once narrowly escaped death at the hands of the notorious Hillside Stranglers, Angelo Buono and Kenneth Bianchi.

    • Lon Chaney Jr.'s wife Patsy reportedly could not stand to even be in Lorre's presence so the two veteran heavies never socialized although the two men got along well on the set when they worked together.

    • Lorre battled morphine addiction off and on for many years.

    • The film that first garnered Lorre acclaim and made him an international sensation was Fritz Lang's "M" in which Lorre played a child murder.

    • Lorre had one child: a daughter named Catharine with third wife Annemarie Brening.

    • Lorre was a fan of the Los Angeles Angels baseball team.

    • His voice and looks were used to inspire many cartoons including Ren from Ren and Stimpy.

  • Quotes