Cornel Wilde

Cornel Wilde (October 13, 1912 – October 16, 1989) was an American actor and film director. Kornél Lajos Weisz was born in 1912 in Prievidza, Hungary (now Slovakia), although his year and place of birth are usually and inaccurately given as 1915 in New York City. His Hungarian Jewish parents were Vojtech Weisz (Americanized to Louis Bela Wilde) and Renée Mary Vid. He was named for his paternal grandfather, and upon arrival in the U.S. at age 7 in 1920, his name was Americanized to Cornelius Louis Wilde. A talented linguist and an astute mimic, he had an ear for languages which became apparent later in his acting career. Wilde attended the City College of New York as a pre-med student, completing the four-year course in three years and winning a scholarship to the Physicians and Surgeons College at Columbia University. He qualified for the United States fencing team prior to the 1936 Summer Olympic Games, but quit the team just prior to the games in order to take a role in the theater. In preparation for an acting career, he and his new wife Marjory Heinzen (later to be known as Patricia Knight) shaved years off their ages, three for him and five for her.

Actor

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