Barnard Hughes

Biography

Barnard Hughes (July 16, 1915 – July 11, 2006) was an American character actor of theater and film. Hughes became famous for a variety of roles; his most notable roles came after middle age, and he was often cast as a dithering authority figure or grandfatherly elder. Hughes was born Bernard Aloysius Kiernan Hughes in Bedford Hills, New York, to Irish immigrants Madge (née Kiernan) and Owen Hughes.[1][2] He attended La Salle Academy and Manhattan College in New York City. Hughes was married to actress Helen Stenborg. They married on April 19, 1950 and remained married until his death. He was 5 days shy of his 91st birthday. They had two children, Doug and Laura, and one grandchild. Hughes changed the "e" in his first name to an "a" to help his acting career on the advice of a numerologist. Through high school and college, Hughes worked a series of odd jobs, including a stint as a dockworker and as a salesman at Macy's. He auditioned for the Shakespeare Fellowship Repertory company in New York City on the advice of a friend, and ended up joining the company for two years. Hughes played more than 400 theatre roles, including the one for which he was perhaps most famous, in Hugh Leonard's Da. He won Broadway's 1978 Tony Award as Best Actor for his portrayal of the title role; he recreated the role for film in 1988 - Da. On screen, he appeared in Midnight Cowboy (1969) (which was the first (and only) X-rated film to win the Academy Award for Best Picture), and also appeared in such films as The Hospital (1971), Oh, God! (1977), First Monday in October (1981), Tron (1982), The Lost Boys (1987), Da (1988) - the screen reprise of his most successful stage-role, and Doc Hollywood (1991). He also played the old man who gave a ride to Felix and Oscar on Odd Couple 2 (1998). Hughes appeared on TV in such series as Naked City, The Secret Storm, Blossom and Homicide: Life on the Street. He had a notable appearance on All in the Family as a Catholic priest doing battle with Archie Bunker, and won an Emmy for his portrayal of a senile judge on Lou Grant. He was the central character in three short-lived sitcoms, Doc, where he played a physician, Mr. Merlin, in which he played Merlin, a magician mentoring a 20th-century teenager, and The Cavanaughs, co-starring Christine Ebersole, where he played the family patriarch (Art Carney, playing his brother, and Glynis Johns made guest appearances). Hughes sang Danny Boy on one episode. He made a memorable appearance as The King (with Jim Dale as The Duke) in the PBS mini-series Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Hughes also made a number of recurring appearances on daytime dramas including Guiding Light and As The World Turns. He has also done voice-overs for TV commercials advertising Kix cereal.

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Birth Name

Barnard Aloysius Kiernan Hughes

Birth Date

7/16/1915

Death Date

7/11/2006
Known For
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Doc Hollywood

Dr. Aurelius Hogue

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Sisters

Arthur McLennen

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A Hobo's Christmas

Chance Grovner

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The Hospital

Drummond

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Best Friends

Tim McCullen

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First Monday in October

Chief Justice James Jefferson Crawford

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A Caribbean Mystery

Mr. Rafiel

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Da

Da

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The UFO Incident

Dr. Benjamin Simon

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Home Fires Burning

Jake Tibbetts

Starring In
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The Fantasticks

Henry Albertson

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Cradle Will Rock

Frank Marvel

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The Odd Couple II

Beaumont

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Da

Da

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Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit

Father Maurice

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Doc Hollywood

Dr. Aurelius Hogue

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The Incident

Doc Hansen

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Day One

Secretary of War Henry Stimson

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Home Fires Burning

Jake Tibbetts

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A Hobo's Christmas

Chance Grovner

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The Lost Boys

Grandpa

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Where Are the Children?

Jonathan Knowles

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The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn

The King

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Maxie

Bishop Campbell

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A Caribbean Mystery

Mr. Rafiel

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Best Friends

Tim McCullen

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TRON

Dr. Walter Gibbs / Dumont

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First Monday in October

Chief Justice James Jefferson Crawford

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See How She Runs

John Matusak, Betty's Father

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Oh, God!

Judge Baker

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Guilty or Innocent: The Sam Sheppard Murder Case

Attorney Philip J. Madden

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The UFO Incident

Dr. Benjamin Simon

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The Borrowers

Mr. Crampfurl

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The Thanksgiving Treasure

Walter Renquist

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Sisters

Arthur McLennen

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Much Ado About Nothing / New York Shakespeare Festival (Broadway Theatre Archive)

Dogberry

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Die Rache ist mein

Dr. Spencer (Public Health Service)

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The Hospital

Drummond

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The Pursuit of Happiness

Judge Vogel

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Dr. Cook's Garden

Elias Hart

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Cold Turkey

Dr. Proctor

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Where's Poppa?

Col. Warren J. Hendricks

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Midnight Cowboy

Towny

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Richard Burton's Hamlet

Marcellus / Priest

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Playgirl

Durkin (uncredited)

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