March 18, 1918
Malden, Massachusetts, U.S.
|Died||April 14, 2013 (aged 95)|
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
|Occupation||Actor and director|
(m. 1948; died 1997)
Mike Road (March 18, 1918 – April 14, 2013) was an American voice actor and Warner Bros. television series contract player whose television career dates back to the 1950s and in films to the 1940s.
He got his start as a thespian in school plays while in Malden High School. The acting bug led to him joining a theatre troupe in Boston. His Broadway debut came in the late 1930s in the short-lived play Doodle Dandy of the U.S.A. Due to its short run, he was forced to support himself by doing odd jobs such as usher, waiter, truck driver, delivery man and sign painter.
Mike Road soon returned to acting with a role in the play The Moonvine. His film career had also begun by this time. Between 1943-46, he appeared in Gildersleeve on Broadway, Tender Comrade, Music in Manhattan, Heavenly Days and several other motion pictures.
In 1946, he successfully returned to the stage, playing the lead role in Dear Ruth. By 1952, Road had been elected as director for The John Hancock Summer Theatre. In 1955, Road made his directorial debut in Sweden with the film Den Underbara Lognen, starring Signe Hasso.
In the late 1950s, his television career also took off. He portrayed Marshal Tom Sellers on the 1958-59 NBC western series Buckskin, co-starring with Sally Brophy and Tom Nolan. Road guest starred twice on Maverick as Bart Maverick's rival Pearly Gates. He was also a regular on the ABC/Warner Brothers detective series Surfside 6, as well as on The Roaring 20s. He later appeared in the series The Alaskans and Lawman, and in other venues: Sea Hunt, I Dream of Jeannie, Bewitched, The Wild, Wild West ("The Night of the Tottering Tontine", S2E16, as Martin Dexter), and Alias Smith and Jones (episode: "Shootout at Diablo Station", 1971).
In his two appearances on the western series Colt .45, Road played Jesse James in "Alias Mr. Howard". He was also cast as a bandit-turned-storekeeper in the segment "Arizona Anderson", which aired on February 14, 1960. In it, Sam Colt, Jr., played by Donald May, goes undercover as a gambler in a bid to force Arizona Anderson, the owner of a general store, to reveal the location of stolen government money taken in a robbery in which Anderson had been a participant. Meanwhile, two former partners in crime appear intent on collecting their share of the loot. Catherine McLeod, Don "Red" Barry, and Arthur Space appear with Road in this episode in the roles of Kate Anderson, Yakel, and Sheriff Len Jennings, respectively.
As a voice actor, Road remains best known as Race Bannon on Hanna-Barbera's Jonny Quest (1964-1965). During this time, he guest starred as Go-Go Ravine on The Flintstones episode "Fred Meets Hercurock". He was also the voice of Zandor on The Herculoids, Ugh the Giant Caveman on Space Ghost and Dino Boy and John Butler on Valley of the Dinosaurs. Road retired from voice acting after voicing Reed Richards on The New Fantastic Four in 1981.
He returned to directing plays on the stage in the 1970s. In 1973, Road won the Los Angeles Drama Critics' Circle Award for Come Slowly Eden. He directed Toni Gerry in the drama one-woman play Hanna Speaks in 1988.
Mike Road died on April 14, 2013 at the age of 95 in Los Angeles.
- The Boston Globe, June 29, 1958
- "Memory Play: One-Woman Drama Tells of Love, the Holocaust and Survival in Biographical 'Hanna Speaks'". Los Angeles Times. May 6, 1988. Retrieved April 14, 2013.
- "Colt .45". ctva.biz. Retrieved December 22, 2012.
- Los Angeles Drama Critics' Circle Awards 1969-1979