An actor who transitioned from a film career to the new medium of television in the 1950s has died. According to The Hollywood Reporter, John Compton died May 12 at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. He was 91.
Compton starred in the 30-minute drama series “The D.A.’s Man,” produced by Jack Webb, during its one-season run back in 1959. He also made numerous guest appearances on early TV shows, including “Gunsmoke,” “Highway Patrol,” “Fury” and “The Real McCoys.”
Early in his career, he was in the 1945 feature “Mildred Pierce,” which was nominated for six Oscars and for which Joan Crawford won Best Actress.
“Compton also had small roles in such prominent pictures as ‘Pride of the Marines’ (1945), starring John Garfield; ‘San Antonio’ (1945), with Errol Flynn; ‘Night and Day’ (1946), starring Cary Grant; and ‘The Ten Commandments’ (1956), directed by Cecil B. DeMille,” THR notes.
Here’s a clip of Compton on “The D.A.’s Man,” introducing the show with a plug for Chesterfield cigarettes: