Norman Lloyd was an actor, a director, and a producer. His career stretched from vaudeville to the starship Enterprise. He was born Norman Perlmutter November 8, 1914 in Jersey City, New Jersey, USA. He died May 11, 2021, in Los Angeles, California. He passed away peacefully at home, dying of natural causes.
Many critics believed “his most notable film part was as the villain who plummets off the Statue of Liberty in 1942?s Saboteur, directed by [Alfred] Hitchcock, who also cast Lloyd in the classic thriller 1945’s Spellbound.”
Lloyd’s career began as a child performer in vaudeville. He made his Broadway debut in 1935. In the Thirties he was a popular, respected actor in New York City both on and off Broadway. That was where he met Orson Welles, who had a major influence on his career. In addition to a forty year friendship with Alfred Hitchcock, he had a strong professional relationship with Hitchcock, who hired him to produce and direct his TV shows.
He acted and directed on stage, in film, on TV, and in radio. He produced and directed many TV shows. As an actor, he worked with directors Elia Kazan, May Sarton, Orson Welles, Charlie Chaplin, Alfred Hitchcock, and Martin Scorese. He performed alongside Charlie Chaplin, Burt Lancaster, Don Adams, Ed Begley, Jr., and Michael Badalucco. He filmed his last movie, Trainwreck, at 99, but it was released after his 100th birthday.
Science Fiction ,Fantasy & Horror Roles
- Merlin “Last Defender of Camelot” Twilight Zone; based on the story of the same name by Roger Zelazney, script written by George R. R. Martin.
- Professor Galen “The Chase” Star Trek: Next Gen
- Dr. Isaac Mentnor Seven Days, in 49 of 66 episodes.
- University president, Wossamotta U., The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle
- Amys Penrose, The Dark Secret of Harvest Home
- Producer, Tales of the Unexpected
- Producer, Journey to the Unknown
- Producer, director,The Alfred Hitchcock Hour
- Producer, director, Alfred Hitchcock Presents
- Caruthers, “The Nude Bomb”, 1980 – A Maxwell Smart movie role, Caruthers was Smart’s version of ‘Q’ from the James Bond films
- Dr. Daniel Auschlander, St. Elsewhere
- Headmaster Nolan, Dead Poets Society
- Norman, Trainwreck
- Bodalink, Limelight
- Mr. Letterblair, The Age of Innocence
- Frank Fry, Saboteur
Stephen Furst, (Vir Kotto on Babylon 5) said “I always looked forward to coming to work because between set ups Norman would talk to us about film and television history – it was like going to film school. I was mesmerized by him and I didn’t even want to get up and go do my next scene.”
Ed Begley, Jr. (Greenbean on Battlestar Galactica) said “I worked with Norman Lloyd the actor and Norman Lloyd the director, and no one informed me better on the art of storytelling than that talented man. He is a constant inspiration, and my eternal friend.”
In the 2007 documentary Who is Norman Lloyd? Karl Malden answered: “If you don’t know Norman Lloyd, you SHOULD know Norman Lloyd, because Norman Lloyd is the history of our industry”.
Jim Longworth said “Norman Lloyd was directed on stage by Orson Welles (“the greatest theatre director we ever had”, says Lloyd), and in film by Charlie Chaplin (“an absolute genius”), Alfred Hitchcock (“an extraordinary gift of storytelling”), Jean Renoir (he had great humanity”), and Martin Scorsese. He appeared in the first ever TV movie in 1939, and directed the first ever broadcast of OMNIBUS with a 5 part series on Lincoln. In his 70’s, Norman acted alongside Denzel Washington, Robin Williams, Daniel Day Lewis and Michelle Pfeiffer. In his 80’s he co-starred with George Clooney, and in his 90’s with Cameron Diaz.”
James Best (Sheriff Roscoe Coltrane in The Dukes of Hazzard) said “I had the honor to have been directed by Norman in a Hitchcock episode called ‘The Jar’. Having worked with hundreds of directors in my career, I found very few that had Norman’s qualities. He was most kind, gracious, and patient with his actors. He is in all respects a complete gentleman in his personal life and I found it a genuine pleasure just to be in the presence of such a talented man. I am also doubly honored to consider him my friend. We are so blessed to have such a man among us for so long”.
George Clooney (Danny Ocean in Ocean’s Eleven) said “Norman is not just the consummate professional, he’s also the consummate gentleman. In a town of two dimensional sets designed to look like the real thing, Norman IS the real thing.”
His wife, actress/director Peggy Craven, predeceased him. They were married 75 years. His daughter, actress Josie Lloyd, also predeceased him. He is survived by his son Michael Lloyd.
Neither Hollywood nor Broadway will soon forget Norman Lloyd. He was universally remembered as a gentleman and a consummate professional.
The late Hume Cronyn once described his friend Norman as “The Ultimate Pro”, to which the kid from Jersey City told me “sounded like a fitting epitaph someday”. What a shame that day has come. May his memory be a blessing.
Susan Macdonald is the author of the children’s book “R is for Renaissance Faire”, as well as short stories in “Alternative Truths”, “Swords and Sorceress #30”, “Supernatural Colorado”, “Barbarian Crowns”, “Cat Tails””Under Western Stars”, and “Knee-High Drummond and the Durango Kid”. Her articles have appeared on SCIFI.radio’s web site, in The Inquisitr, and in The Millington Star. She enjoys Renaissance Faires (see book above), science fiction conventions, Highland Games, and Native American pow-wows.