Monday, March 18, 2013

Albert Salmi

The 1950's and early '60's were an interesting time for movies and television. In film, typical Hollywood was still holding on to the melodramatic style of acting that had been the norm, while television was taking chances with fresh faces from the New York stage who brought realism and truth to the characters they played. This was a new form of acting and it set the stage for what we have today. And Albert Salmi was one of the early pioneers of the modern style.

In fact, he was one of the best of the lot. It's hard not to watch an old show from that era and not wonder why the work of Albert Salmi isn't more recognized. It's probably because he was a working actor guest starring in television shows instead of the actual star. He was never singled out for one particular role. Instead, he jumped from series to series creating memorable moments which helped make the golden age of television what it was.

With his non-actor look and sincere honest portrayals, he was able to bring us flawed good guys and human villains. While often cast as the heavy, Albert Salmi brought depth and insight to his roles, turning one dimensional characters into complicated individuals. A feat that many actors before and after him have often failed to do.

From Daniel Boone  to Combat, The Twilight Zone  to Knots Landing, Bonanza, Gunsmoke, Alfred Hitchcock Presents, Judd for the Defense, Lost in Space and many other top-notch shows of its day, Albert Salmi delivered quality work time after time. And while his name may not be on the lips of many, his talent and presence is hard to ignore for anyone who is fortunate enough to see his work.

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