Lawrence Tierney

Description   [from Freebase]

Lawrence Tierney (March 15, 1919 – February 26, 2002) was an American actor, known for his many screen portrayals of mobsters and hardened criminals, which mirrored his own frequent brushes with the law. Commenting on the DVD release of a Tierney film in 2005, a New York Times critic observed, "The hulking Tierney was not so much an actor as a frightening force of nature." Tierney was born in Brooklyn, New York, the son of Mary and Lawrence Tierney, an Irish-American policeman. Tierney was a star athlete at Boys High School in Brooklyn, where he won awards for track and field and was a member of Omega Gamma Delta fraternity. He earned an athletic scholarship to Manhattan College, but quit after two years to work as a laborer on the New York Aqueduct. He traveled around the country, bouncing from job to job, and worked as catalogue model for Sears Roebuck & Co. An acting coach suggested that he try the stage, and Tierney joined the Black Friars theatre group and later the American-Irish Theatre. He was spotted there by an RKO talent scout and given a film contract in 1943.
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