Sid Melton

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Sid Melton
Sid Melton Charlie Halper Danny Thomas Show 1963.JPG
Melton (center) as Charlie Halper, 1963.
BornSidney Meltzer
(1917-05-22)May 22, 1917
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
DiedNovember 2, 2011(2011-11-02) (aged 94)
Burbank, California, U.S.
Cause of deathPneumonia
OccupationActor
Years active1939–2001
 
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Sid Melton
Sid Melton Charlie Halper Danny Thomas Show 1963.JPG
Melton (center) as Charlie Halper, 1963.
BornSidney Meltzer
(1917-05-22)May 22, 1917
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
DiedNovember 2, 2011(2011-11-02) (aged 94)
Burbank, California, U.S.
Cause of deathPneumonia
OccupationActor
Years active1939–2001

Sid Melton (May 22, 1917 – November 2, 2011) was an American actor known for his roles as incompetent carpenter Alf Monroe in the CBS sitcom Green Acres and as Uncle Charlie Halper, proprietor of the Copa Club, in Make Room for Daddy and its spin-offs.[1]

Melton appeared in about 140 film and television projects in a career that spanned nearly 60 years. Among his most famous films were Lost Continent with Cesar Romero, The Steel Helmet with Gene Evans and Robert Hutton, The Lemon Drop Kid with Bob Hope, and Lady Sings The Blues with Diana Ross and Billy Dee Williams.

He was later a regular on The Danny Thomas Show and Green Acres, and appeared in several episodes of The Golden Girls.[2]

Career[edit]

Born as Sidney Meltzer in Brooklyn, New York, he was the brother of screenwriter Lewis Meltzer, and the son of Isidor Meltzer, a Yiddish theater comedian.

Melton made his stage debut in a 1939 touring production of See My Lawyer and in 1941 was cast as Fingers in Shadow of the Thin Man. During World War II he entertained American soldiers overseas where he met screenwriter Aubrey Wisberg who arranged for him to have a part in his Treasure of Monte Cristo for Robert Lippert.[3]

This was his first film after signing his first Hollywood contract with Lippert Pictures in 1949. The studio churned out low-budget films, most of them made in less than a week, and he was the comic relief in dozens of them, including Treasure of Monte Cristo, Mask of the Dragon and Lost Continent.

Other movies included On the Town, The Geisha Boy, The Tunnel of Love, and Blondie Goes to College. He appeared in two Lippert Pictures, Lost Continent and Radar Secret Service, which were later featured on Mystery Science Theater 3000, whose hosts gave Melton the nickname "Monkey Boy" due to his comedy relief antics.

He played Captain Midnight’s sidekick, Ichabod Mudd, in Captain Midnight, an early 1950s Saturday-morning children’s show. Until the end of his life, old fans would greet him on the street with his signature introductory gag line, “Mudd with two D’s.[4]

Melton appeared three times as Harry Cooper in the 1955–1956 CBS sitcom It's Always Jan, starring Janis Paige and Merry Anders.

In the Late 1950's, Sid played several small roles in the popular DesiLu show The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour, in which he is a construction worker who comes into the room through the window to ask for Milton Berle's autograph for his children. He also starred in another episode in which he plays as a bellboy for a hotel in Nome, Alaska that Lucy and the gang are staying at. Although minor roles, they are noteworthy being that he worked alongside some of the biggest names in 50's television in a company that would come to be part of Paramount.[5]

His television credits also include The Golden Girls (as Sophia's deceased husband, Salvadore, in flashback and dream sequences), Captain Midnight (as Ichabod "Ikky" Mudd), Dragnet, M Squad, and Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. He also had a guest role in an episode of Adventures of Superman called The Deadly Rock, and as a photographer in an episode of I Dream of Jeannie entitled "The Biggest Star in Hollywood". He also guest-starred in one episode of The Dick Van Dyke Show, where he played deli-owner Bert Monker who is in love with Sally Rogers.

Melton was married once, in the 1940s, but the marriage was annulled. “After that,” said brother-in-law, David Lawrence, “he kept dogs, mainly wire-haired terriers.”[6]

In 2005, he attended Eddie Albert's funeral along with Green Acres co-stars Mary Grace Canfield and Frank Cady.

Death[edit]

Melton died from pneumonia on November 2, 2011. He was interred at Hillside Memorial Park in Culver City, California.

Selected filmography[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ PASSINGS: Sid Melton, Leonard Stone, Liz Anderson, Thomas McNeeley Jr., George Rountree
  2. ^ Internet Movie Database http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0578412/
  3. ^ Weaver, Tom. A Sci-Fi Swarm and Horror Horde: Interviews with 62 Filmmakers, p. 118. McFarland.
  4. ^ Vitello, Paul, “Sid Melton, Comic Actor of Film and TV, Dies at 94,” New York Times, November 6, 2011 http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/06/arts/television/sid-melton-tv-and-film-actor-dies-at-94.html
  5. ^ http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0578412/
  6. ^ Vitello, Paul, “Sid Melton, Comic Actor of Film and TV, Dies at 94,” New York Times, November 6, 2011 http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/06/arts/television/sid-melton-tv-and-film-actor-dies-at-94.html

External links[edit]