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|Also Known As:||Jacques Haussmann||Died:||October 31, 1988|
|Born:||September 22, 1902||Cause of Death:||spinal cancer|
|Birth Place:||Romania||Profession:||Cast ... producer actor director author artistic director screenwriter translator executive agricultural representative teacher|
Widely regarded as one of the most respected innovators of the American stage, John Houseman also enjoyed tremendous success as a producer, screenwriter and, perhaps most remarkable of all, as a character actor in a prolific later career, begun at the age of 70. Forced out of his lucrative international grain business by the Stock Market Crash of 1929, Houseman found a creative outlet alongside wunderkind Orson Welles at the Federal Theater Project. Frequently controversial productions produced and directed by Houseman and Welles included the 1935 "voodoo" version of "Macbeth" and the historic labor union musical "The Cradle Will Rock" in 1936. After forming the Mercury Theater Company - responsible for the infamous "War of the Worlds" radio broadcast in 1938 - with Welles, he followed the young auteur to Hollywood, where he made significant contributions to "Citizen Kane" (1941). A falling out over "Kane" brought an end to Houseman's relationship with the volatile Welles, although a successful career as a film producer kept him in the industry for more than 30 years. Then, just as he was about to retire, the 70-year-old Houseman became one of the most sought-after supporting actors in the years following his Academy Award-winning turn as a crusty, yet conscientious law professor in "The Paper Chase" (1973). Over the next 15 years, he would be seen in scores of feature films, television miniseries and commercial campaigns. In a variety of professional roles, Houseman made immeasurable contributions to the mediums of stage, film and television.
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