MGM Studio publicity photograph, 1927
|Died||September 4, 1950 (aged 75)|
|Spouse(s)||Alice Marti (1927 – ?)|
Max Davidson (May 23, 1875 – September 4, 1950) was a German film actor known for his comedic Jewish persona during the silent film era. With a career spanning over thirty years, Davidson appeared in over 180 films.
Born in Berlin, Davidson emigrated to the United States in the 1890s where he began working in stock theater and vaudeville. He entered silent movies in 1912. By the mid-teens, Davidson had appeared in his first feature film, Edward Dillon's Don Quixote (1915), followed by D.W. Griffith's Intolerance, and Tod Browning's Puppets (both 1916).
In the 1920s, he began working for Hal Roach, appearing in numerous two-reeler comedies including Call of the Cuckoo with Charley Chase, Get 'Em Young with Stan Laurel, and Why Girls Say No and Love 'Em and Feed 'Em with Oliver Hardy, as well as the early talkie Our Gang short Moan and Groan, Inc. (1929), as the crazy old man who haunts a house. He starred alongside a young Jackie Coogan in a pair of silent features, The Rag Man (1923) and Old Clothes (1925).
In 1923, he appeared in the Mack Sennett feature The Extra Girl with Mabel Normand, and in 1927 made a rare starring feature at Columbia, Pleasure Before Business, as well as playing a somewhat more serious role as a servant in the Pola Negri WW1 vehicle Hotel Imperial. He also received the colorization treatment as an irate shopkeeper in the Three Stooges film No Census, No Feeling (1940).
Later career and death
Davidson made the transition to sound film, but ended his career by playing mostly uncredited roles. He made his final screen appearance in the 1945 Clark Gable film Adventure. Davidson died on September 4, 1950 in Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, California.
|1913||Scenting a Terrible Crime||The Superintendent|
|1914||An Interrupted Séance||Landlord|
|1915||Caught by the Handle||Mr. Riche|
|1916||Sunshine Dad||Mystic Seer|
|1916||The Heiress at Coffee Dan's||Shorty Olson|
|1917||A Daughter of the Poor||Joe Eastman||Alternative titles: The Heart of the Poor|
|1917||The Scrub Lady||Max and Marie Dressler in the film|
|1918||The Hun Within||Max|
|1919||The Hoodlum||Abram Isaacs|
|1919||The Mother and the Law||The Kindly Neighbor|
|1921||No Woman Knows||Ferdinand Brandeis|
|1921||The Idle Rich||The tailor|
|1922||Second Hand Rose||Abe Rosenstein|
|1922||Turn to the Right||Pawnbroker|
|1922||The Right That Failed||Michael Callahan|
|1923||The Ghost Patrol||Rapushkin|
|1923||The Darling of New York||Solomon Levinsky|
|1924||Fools Highway||Old Levi|
|1924||Hold Your Breath||Street Merchant|
|1925||The Rag Man||Max Ginsburg|
|1925||Old Clothes||Max Ginsburg|
|1925||Justice of the Far North||Izzy Hawkins|
|1926||Raggedy Rose||Moe Ginsberg|
|1927||Hotel Imperial||Elias Butterman|
|1927||Why Girls Say No||Papa Whisselberg|
|1927||Pleasure Before Business||Sam Weinberg|
|1927||Jewish Prudence||Papa Gimplewart|
|1927||Don't Tell Everything|
|1927||Should Second Husbands Come First?|
|1927||Call of the Cuckoo||Papa Grimplewart|
|1927||Love 'Em and Feed 'Em|
|1928||The Boy Friend||Papa Davidson|
|1928||Feed 'Em and Weep||Max, restaurant manager|
|1928||Pass the Gravy||The father||National Film Registry|
|1928||Came the Dawn|
|1929||So This Is College||Moe Levine, the tailor|
|1929||Moan and Groan, Inc.||The lunatic|
|1930||The Shrimp||Professor Schoenheimer|
|1931||The Itching Hour|
|1931||Oh! Oh! Cleopatra||Royal musician|
|1932||Docks of San Francisco||Max, Detective|
|1933||The Cohens and Kellys in Trouble||Larsen||Uncredited|
|1934||Straight Is the Way||Old clothes man||Uncredited|
|1936||Roamin' Wild||Abe Wineman|
|1937||The Girl Said No||Max||Alternative title: With Words and Music|
|1939||The Great Commandment||Old man|
|1940||The Great Dictator||Jewish man||Uncredited|
|1940||Kitty Foyle: The Natural History of a Woman||Flower man||Uncredited|
|1940||No Census, No Feeling||Storekeeper||Uncredited|
|1942||Reap the Wild Wind||Juror||Uncredited|
|1945||Adventure||Man in library||Uncredited|
- Erens, Patricia (1988). The Jew in American Cinema. Indiana University Press. pp. 92–93. ISBN 978-0-253-20493-6.
- McCaffrey, Donald W.; Jacobs, Christopher P. (1999). Guide to the Silent Years of American Cinema. Greenwood Publishing Group. pp. 102. ISBN 978-0-313-30345-6.
- "The Heiress at Coffee Dan's". AFI Catalog of Feature Films. Retrieved November 29, 2014.
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