David Frye is best remembered for his creepy Renfield in “Dracula” (1931), but was a character actor of wide range and abilities, and interests, who to his own regret became quickly typecast into small roles as maniacs in monster movies.
Mr. Frye was came to Hollywood from Broadway. His role in “Dracula” brought him the attention of the public and the studio alike, and he was quickly re-used as Fritz in “Frankenstein,” also made in 1931. It was a mold that he tried later to break, unsuccessfully, as the studio kept using him in smaller and smaller roles which usually required him to support lunatic masters.
On the side, he returned to the stage and found satisfaction in local theater. As if he wasn’t busy enough, during the war he helped the war effort by working nights, when his scheduled allowed, at Lockheed Aircraft Company as a tool designer. Tragically, Mr. Frye died of a heart attack while only in his early 40s. In later years, his depiction of the doomed Renfield made him something of a cult figure, but he was much more than that.
Here is a fine website with more detail on the career of David Frye.
That’s all for this week. See you Monday. Have a good weekend.