Steven Geray

1904 - 1973

Diminutive, gentle-featured character actor, who specialised in playing meek, reticent or kindly gentlemen, usually of Gallic, Germanic or Eastern European backgrounds. Istvan Gyergyay was born in the old Austro/Hungarian town of Ungvar (present-day Uzhgorod) and studied at Budapest University. His acting career began on stage with the Hungarian National Theatre in 1924. By the end of the decade, he appeared in Hungarian films (one of them, Tokajerglut (1933), starred the Hungarian actor, and future Hollywood favourite, S.Z. Sakall). In 1934, Istvan moved to Britain and became first 'Stefan', then 'Steven'. In spite of initial linguistic problems, he soon managed to secure steady work on screen and in radio. Seven years later, he turned up in Hollywood and soon found himself much in demand for playing waiters, maitre d's, stewards, doctors and the occasional ship captain.He was a useful little actor to back up the exotic locales stipulated for films like The Mask of Dimitrios (1944). H

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