Sydney Deane (center) in The Last of the Mohicans (1920)
|Full name||Sydney Leslie Deane|
|Born||1 March 1863|
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
|Died||20 March 1934 (aged 71)|
New York, US
|Domestic team information|
|1890||New South Wales|
|First-class debut||25 January 1890 New South Wales v Victoria|
|Last First-class||14 February 1890 New South Wales v South Australia|
Source: CricketArchive, 21 September 2008
Born in Balmain, Sydney, to Edward and Sophia, Deane was a promising junior Rugby Union player and represented New South Wales against Queensland. Along with his cousins, Australian Test captain Billy Murdoch and Norman Deane, who played first-class cricket for New South Wales, Deane also excelled in cricket, and made his first-class debut for New South Wales, against Victoria, at the Association Ground, Sydney on 25 January 1890. A wicket-keeper, Deane held six catches, at that time an Australian first-class record and caught the attention of the selectors for the Australian squad for the upcoming Ashes tour of Britain. In the next match, against South Australia, Deane also performed well, and starred in a non-first-class match against a Queensland XV.
On 19 February 1890, Deane was selected in the Australian cricket squad. However, the Victorian members of the squad protested against Deane's inclusion, arguing that it was favouritism towards New South Wales. Victorian wicket keeper Jack Blackham, a key member of the Australian side, went as far as to threaten to boycott the tour if Deane was selected ahead of fellow Victorian Jack Harry. Eventually a compromise wicket keeper, Tasmanian Kenneth Burn was selected, although Burn had never kept wicket in his life.
Following the Test selection drama, Deane moved to Melbourne after accepting an offer to appear with J.C. Williamson's theatrical troupe. Deane "possessed a magnificant tenor voice" and quickly became a leading performer around Australia and New Zealand, appearing in Gilbert and Sullivan operettas such as The Gondoliers. Deane also moved into theatre production management, co-founding and managing the Elite Vaudeville Company, which ran a number of productions starring Deane, including a farce based on Trilby entitled Trill-B!, in which Deane played the character of Sven-Garlic.
He also continued to play cricket, and although unable to break into the Victorian side, due to the presence of Blackham, Deane represented East Melbourne against an English touring side in 1892.
Deane left Australia for the United States of America in the late 1890s, where he soon became a leading Vaudeville entertainer, appearing on Broadway musicals, including the original cast of Florodora, which ran for 553 performances, The Woggle-Bug, (based on The Wonderful Wizard of Oz), The Knickerbocker Girl and My Lady Molly.
Impressed by his acting ability, Jesse L. Lasky recruited Deane to join the Jesse L. Lasky Feature Play Company, which relocated to Hollywood to produce films. Deane made his film debut in 1914 in the original version of Brewster's Millions, which was Cecil B. DeMille's second film. Deane appeared in a number of DeMille's early films before signing a contract with Universal Pictures, where he appeared in movies alongside Lon Chaney Sr..
Deane's final film appearance was in the 1924 film America, directed by D.W. Griffith, after which he retired to New York, where he died, aged 71. Unusually for an actor and cricketer of his significance, neither Variety or Wisden ran his obituary.
|Brewster's Millions||1914||Jonas Sedgwick|
|The Call of the North||1914||McTavish|
|The Virginian||1914||Uncle Hughey|
|The Making of Bobby Burnit||1914||Silas Trimmer||aka Bobby Burnit|
|What's His Name||1914||Uncle Peter|
|Ready Money||1914||Owner of the Skyrocket|
|Rose of the Rancho||1914||Ranch Owner|
|The Girl of the Golden West||1915||Sidney Duck|
|The Goose Girl||1915||Prince Regent of Jugendheit|
|The Warrens of Virginia||1915||General Harding|
|A Gentleman of Leisure||1915||Sir Thomas Blunt|
|Stolen Goods||1915||Mr. North|
|The Arab||1915||Dr. Hilbert|
|The Secret Orchard||1915||Nanette's father|
|The Scarlet Chastity||1916|
|Playthings of the Gods||1916|
|The Evil Women Do||1916||Malgat/Papa Ravinet||Billed as "Sydney Dean". The film was also known as The Clique of Gold.|
|Melting Millions||1917||Uncle Peter|
|The Grip of Love||1917|
|The Field of Honor||1917||Poole||Billed as "Sidney Deane".|
|A Doll's House||1917||Dr. Rank|
|The Gray Ghost||1917|
|The Reed Case||1917||John Reed||Billed as "Sydney Dean".|
|Sirens of the Sea||1917||Wellington Stanhope||Released as Darlings of the Gods in the United Kingdom.|
|Beloved Jim||1917||Lawrence Darcy|
|The Wife He Bought||1918||James Brierson|
|The Midnight Trail||1918||Reverend Robert Moreland|
|Breakers Ahead||1918||Hiram Hawley|
|No Man's Land||1918|
|Lure of the Circus||1918||Reynolds||Billed as "Sidney Deane".|
|A Man and His Money||1919||John Sturgeon|
|The Crimson Gardenia||1919||Papa la Forge||Billed as "Sidney Deane".|
|Male and Female||1919||Thomas|
|The Midlanders||1920||Judge Van Hart|
|Treasure Island||1920||Squire Trelawney|
|The Strange Boarder||1920||Dawson|
|Once a Plumber||1920||Fenelon||Billed as "Sidney Deane".|
|The Last of the Mohicans||1920||General Webb|
|Find the Woman||1922||Sofford|
|Missing Millions||1922||Donald Gordon|
|Her Own Story||1922|
|The Broken Violin||1923||Dr. Mason|
|America||1924||Sir Ashley Montague||Released as Love and Sacrifice in the UK.|
- Varying dates have been given for Deane's birth and death. Bonnell gives a birth year of 1866 and death as 1934, CricketArchive provides 1 March 1863 and 20 March 1934, Cricinfo lists 1 March 1866 and 20 March 1934 and the Internet Movie Database (IMDB) gives 1869 and 1 March 1939 (IMDB also gives "Austria" as Deane's place of birth). The New South Wales Births, Deaths and Marriages states 1 March 1863 as his date of birth and the New York City Births, Deaths and Marriages lists Sidney (sic) Deane's date of death as 20 March 1934.
- Bonnell, M. (2004) "Men of Many Talents", The Journal of the Cricket Society, vol. 21, no. 4., The Cricket Society
- Bonnell, M. (2004) "Men of Many Talents", The Journal of the Cricket Society, vol. 21, no. 4., The Cricket Society.
- "Norman Deane", Cricket Archive, http://www.cricketarchive.co.uk/Archive/Players/5/5817/5817.html Accessed 13 September 2008.
- Evening Post, "The Australian Team For England", 20 February 1890
- Grey River Argus, "The Australian Eleven", 12 March 1890.
- New Zealand Herald, "Review of the New Zealand Premiere of The Gondoliers", 16 September 1892. http://homepages.ihug.co.nz/~melbear/downunder/gondoliersreview2.htm Accessed 20 September 2008.
- Djubal, C. (2008) "Trill-B! ; Or, Svengalee the Great Hypnotiser", AustLit. Accessed 21 September 2008.
- New York Times, "Treasurer's Club Benefit", 26 February 1900.
- New York Times, "Another Musical Show for Broadway's Summer Season", 14 June 1903.
- Cullen, F. (2007), Vaudeville, old & new: an encyclopedia of variety performers in America, Volume 1, Routledge. ISBN 0-415-93853-8.
- Birchard, R. & Thomas, K. (2004) Cecil B. DeMille's Hollywood, University Press of Kentucky. ISBN 0-8131-2324-0.
- New York Times, "Close Scores in Cricket Matches", 31 May 1912.
- New York Times, "Narrowly Escapes Defeat; Manor Field Lucky to Get Draw With Brooklyn", 6 August 1921
- "New York City Death Index Results" http://www.italiangen.org/NYCDeathresults.asp?kind=exact&Esurname=Deane&Efirst=S&StartYear=&EndYear=&B1=Submit Accessed 21 September 2008.
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