Born John Cox on April 14, 1913, Cleveland native John Howard didn't consider a career as an actor until he entered college. After some minor stage work, following graduation Howard headed for Hollywood and quickly signed a contact with Paramount Studios. The studio cast Howard in a few small roles, and soon after he was handed the role of Bulldog Drummond, Paramount's late 1930s adventure series. After Paramount shot down the series, Howard was cast in his best film The Philadelphia Story (1940; with Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn). When Howard's contract with Paramount ended in 1941, he freelanced for other studios, including Republic and Monogram. With the onset of U.S. involvement in World War II, he joined the Navy.

John HowardJohn HowardLloyd Nolan, John Howard, and Buster Crabbe

LEFT and CENTER: Late 1930s Paramount photos. RIGHT: Unusual mid 1930s beefcake photo with Paramount Studio contract players Lloyd Nolan and Buster Crabbe on the beach

Highly decorated during the war, Howard returned to civilian life only to find a vanished film career, much like other film stars of the 1930s. Desperate for work, Howard took a role on an early DuMont series titled Public Prosecutor (1947-1948) in which he portrayed the title character. Between occasional films, he also worked in television throughout the 1950s and 1960s.

John HowardJohn HowardJohn HowardJohn Howard and Jane Wyatt

LEFT, CENTER A, and CENTER B: Paramount photos from the mid to late 1930s. RIGHT: With Jane Wyatt in 1986. Wyatt and Howard costarred in the 1937 film Lost Horizon

the films of john howard

Millions in the Air (1935)

John Howard and Wendy Barrie

With Wendy Barrie in Paramount's Millions in the Air

Valiant Is the Word for Carrie (1936)

Arline Judge, John Howard, and Gladys GeorgeArline Judge and John Howard

LEFT: From the Paramount drama Valiant Is the Word for Carrie with Arline Judge and Gladys George. RIGHT: with Arline Judge

Penitentiary (1938)

Jean Parker and John Howard

From the Columbia drama Penitentiary with Jean Parker

Bulldog Drummond's Bride (1939)

John Howard and Heather Angel

With Heather Angel in the Paramount mystery Bulldog Drummond's Bride. Avid TV viewers will remember Heather Angel in the role of Miss Faversham in the 1966-1971 CBS TV series Family Affair

Grand Jury Secrets (1939)

John Howard and Richard Denning

With Richard Denning in the Paramount drama Grand Jury Secrets

The Man from Dakota (1940)

Dolores Del Rio and John HowardDolores Del Rio and John HowardJohn Howard and Wallace Beery

LEFT and CENTER: With Dolores Del Rio in MGM's war drama The Man from Dakota. RIGHT: With Wallace Beery

Submarine Raider (1942)

John Howard

As Commander Chris Warren in the Columbia war drama Submarine Raider

The Man Who Returned to Life (1942)

John Howard and Ruth Ford

With Ruth Ford in the Columbia drama The Man Who Returned to Life

A Tragedy at Midnight (1942)

Margaret Lindsay and John HowardKeye Luke, Margaret Lindsay, and John Howard

With Margaret Lindsay and Keye Luke in Republic's A Tragedy at Midnight

The Fighting Kentuckian (1949)

Hugo Haas, Vera Ralston, and John Howard

From the John Wayne Republic western The Fighting Kentuckian with Hugo Haas and Vera Ralston

Models, Inc (1952)

John Howard, Howard Duff, and Coleen Gray

With Howard Duff and Coleen Gray in the low-budget noir Models, Inc.

TV Reader's Digest (1955-1956 ABC TV Anthology Series)

John Howard

Howard as General Oliver Otis Howard in an episode of TV Reader's Digest titled Cochise, Greatest of the Apaches, which originally aired in January 1956

later years

With his film career in decline, Howard went into teaching and eventually became the headmaster of a private school, yet he continued working as an actor whenever he could. He took guest roles on series as Perry Mason, Mannix, and Wonder Woman and acted in a few films including So Evil, My Sister (1974; with Faith Domergue) and Capone (1975; with Ben Gazzara), his last film. Retiring from acting in the late 1970s, John Howard passed away from heart failure on February 19, 1995, at the age of 81. He was survived by his wife, Eva, and four children.

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Capone (1975) with Ben Gazzara, Susan Blakely, Sylvester Stallone, and John Cassavetes
So Evil, My Sister (1974) with Faith Domergue, Susan Strasberg, and Sydney Chaplin
Buck and the Preacher (1972) with Sidney Poitier, Harry Belafonte, Ruby Dee, Cameron Mitchell, Denny Miller, and Nita Talbot
Eye for an Eye (1971) with Cameron Mitchell
The Destructors (1968) with Richard Egan, David Brian, John Ericson, and Patricia Owens
Destination Inner Space (1966) with Scott Brady, Sheree North, and Gary Merrill
Moochie of Pop Warner Football (1960) with Kevin Corcoran, Russ Conway, and Alan Hale Jr.
The Unknown Terror (1957) with Mala Powers and Charles Gray
The High and the Mighty (1954) with John Wayne, Claire Trevor, Laraine Day, Robert Stack, Jan Sterling, William Campbell, and David Brian
Make Haste to Live (1954) with Dorothy McGuire and Stephen McNally
Models, Inc. (1952) with Coleen Gray and Howard Duff
Experiment Alcatraz (1950) with Frank Cady and Byron Foulger
Radar Secret Service (1950) with Tom Neal, Adele Jergens, and Ralph Byrd
The Fighting Kentuckian (1949) with John Wayne, Marie Windsor, and Vera Ralston
I, Jane Doe (1948) with Ruth Hussey, Vera Ralston, and John Carroll
Love from a Stranger (1947) with John Hodiak and Sylvia Sidney
The Undying Monster (1942) with James Ellison and Heather Angel
Isle of Missing Men (1942) with Gilbert Roland and Alan Mowbray
Submarine Raider (1942) with Bruce Bennett, Marguerite Chapman, Larry Parks, and Forrest Tucker
The Man Who Returned to Life (1942) with Ruth Ford
A Tragedy at Midnight (1942) with Keye Luke and Margaret Lindsay
Three Girls About Town (1941) with Joan Blondell, Janet Blair, and Binnie Barnes
Father Takes a Wife (1941) with Adolphe Menjou, Gloria Swanson, Desi Arnaz, Neil Hamilton, and Grady Sutton
Tight Shoes (1941) with Binnie Barnes, Broderick Crawford, Anne Gwynne, and Shemp Howard
The Mad Doctor (1941) with Basil Rathbone and Ellen Drew
The Invisible Woman (1940) with John Barrymore, Virginia Bruce, Maria Montez, and Shemp Howard
The Texas Rangers Ride Again (1940) with Ellen Drew and Broderick Crawford
The Philadelphia Story (1940) with Cary Grant, Katharine Hepburn, James Stewart, and Ruth Hussey
The Man from Dakota (1940) with Wallace Beery and Dolores Del Rio
Green Hell (1940) with Joan Bennett, Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Vincent Price, and George Sanders
Disputed Passage (1939) with Dorothy Lamour and Keye Luke
What a Life (1939) with Jackie Cooper, Lionel Stander, and Hedda Hopper
Bulldog Drummond's Bride (1939) with Heather Angel, H.B. Warner, and Reginald Denny
Grand Jury Secrets (1939) with Gail Patrick, William Frawley, Elisha Cook Jr., Jane Darwell, and Richard Denning
Bulldog Drummond's Secret Police (1939) with Leo G. Carroll, Heather Angel, H.B. Warner, and Reginald Denny
Arrest Bulldog Drummond (1939) with George Zucco, Heather Angel, H.B. Warner, and Reginald Denny
Touchdown, Army (1938) with Mary Carlisle, Robert Cummings, and William Frawley
Bulldog Drummond in Africa (1938) with J. Carrol Naish, Heather Angel, H.B. Warner, and Reginald Denny
Prison Farm (1938) with Lloyd Nolan, Marjorie Main, J. Carrol Naish, Anna Q. Nilsson, and Mae Busch
Bulldog Drummond's Peril (1938) with John Barrymore and Reginald Denny
Penitentiary (1938) with Jean Parker
Bulldog Drummond Comes Back (1937) with John Barrymore, Louise Campbell, Reginald Denny, and J. Carrol Naish
Hitting a New High (1937) with Lily Pons, Jack Oakie, and Edward Everett Horton
Bulldog Drummond's Revenge (1937) with John Barrymore, Louise Campbell, and Reginald Denny
Hold 'Em Navy (1937) with Lew Ayres, Mary Carlisle, and Richard Denning
Mountain Music (1937) with Martha Raye, Bob Burns, George 'Gabby' Hayes, and Fuzzy Knight
Let Them Live (1937) with Nan Grey
Lost Horizon (1937) with Ronald Colman, Jane Wyatt, Margo, Edward Everett Horton, Isabel Jewell, and H.B. Warner
Soak the Rich (1936) with Ilka Chase and Percy Kilbride
Valiant Is the Word for Carrie (1936) with Gladys George and Arline Judge
Easy to Take (1936) with Marsha Hunt, Eugene Pallette, and Carl 'Alfalfa' Switzer
Border Flight (1936) with Frances Farmer, Robert Cummings, and Grant Withers
Thirteen Hours by Air (1936) with Joan Bennett, Fred MacMurray, Zasu Pitts, and Brian Donlevy
Millions in the Air (1935) with Wendy Barrie and Robert Cummings
Annapolis Farewell (1935) with Guy Standing
Four Hours to Kill! (1935) with Richard Barthelmess and Ray Milland
Car 99 (1935) with Fred MacMurray, Ann Sheridan, Guy Standing, and William Frawley

Days of Our Lives, 1965-present NBC daytime TV series. Howard portrayed Cliff Patterson during the 1971 season
My Three Sons, 1960-1972 ABC/CBS TV series. Howard portrayed Dave Welch from 1965-1967
Adventures of the Sea Hawk, 1958 syndicated TV series. Howard portrayed Commander Pliny Hawk
Dr. Hudson's Secret Journal, 1956 syndicated TV series. Howard portrayed Dr. Wayne Hudson. Also in the cast was Jack Kelly
Crawford Mystery Theatre, 1951 DuMont TV series. Howard served as host of a few episodes
Public Prosecutor, 1947-1948 DuMont TV series. Also in the cast was Anne Gwynne

The Rockford Files, episode Black Mirror: Parts 1 and 2, originally aired November 24, 1978
Wonder Woman, episode Last of the $2 Bills, originally aired January 8, 1977
Bronk, episode Long Time Dying, originally aired February 1, 1976
Little House on the Prairie, episode The Pride of Walnut Grove, originally aired January 28, 1976
Police Woman, episode The End Game, originally aired September 13, 1974
The New Perry Mason, episode The Case of the Ominous Oath, originally aired September 30, 1973
Hawaii Five-O, episode Percentage, originally aired February 20, 1973
The Brady Bunch, episode Today, I Am a Freshman, originally aired October 13, 1972
Mission: Impossible, episode Committed, originally aired January 22, 1972
The Bold Ones: The New Doctors, episode Glass Cage, originally aired December 5, 1971
To Rome with Love, episode The Stray Cat, originally aired February 10, 1971
The Brady Bunch, episode Coming Out Party, originally aired January 29, 1971
To Rome with Love, episode We Want to Go Home, originally aired November 16, 1969
Mannix, episode A Question of Midnight, originally aired October 25, 1969
Family Affair, episode Star Dust, originally aired December 18, 1967
My Three Sons, episode TV or Not TV, originally aired January 26, 1967
The Legend of Jesse James, episode 1863, originally aired March 28, 1966
My Three Sons, episode Whatever Happened to Baby Chip?, originally aired February 3, 1966
The Lucy Show, episode Lucy and the Soap Opera, originally aired January 31, 1966
My Three Sons, episode Charley, the Pigeon, originally aired December 25, 1965
My Three Sons, episode Office Mother, originally aired October 22, 1965
Profiles in Courage, episode Thomas Corwin, originally aired May 9, 1965
Perry Mason, episode The Case of the Ruinous Road, originally aired December 31, 1964
Perry Mason, episode The Case of the Festive Felon, originally aired November 28, 1963
Perry Mason, episode The Case of the Capricious Corpse, originally aired October 4, 1962
Perry Mason, episode The Case of the Crippled Cougar, originally aired March 3, 1962
Rawhide, episode The Captain's Wife, originally aired January 12, 1962
77 Sunset Strip, episode Bullets for Santa, originally aired December 22, 1961
Surfside 6, episode The Old School Tie, originally aired November 20, 1961
Bronco, episode The Prince of Darkness, originally aired November 6, 1961
Gunslinger, episode The Recruit, originally aired (1961) March 23, 1961
Outlaws, episode The Bell, originally aired March 9, 1961
The Americans, episode Rebellion at Blazing Rock, originally aired January 30, 1961
77 Sunset Strip, episode Stranger Than Fiction, originally aired April 22, 1960
Cheyenne, episode Home Is the Brave, originally aired March 14, 1960
Men Into Space, episode Caves of the Moon, originally aired February 3, 1960
Wagon Train, episode The Colonel Harris Story, originally aired January 13, 1960
Lawman, episode The Showdown, originally aired January 10, 1960
Lux Video Theatre, episode High Tension, originally aired July 25, 1957
Front Row Center, episode The Human Touch, originally aired April 15, 1956
TV Reader's Digest, episode Courage, originally aired April 9, 1956
TV Reader's Digest, episode Cochise, Greatest of the Apaches, originally aired January 30, 1956
Lux Video Theatre, episode September Affair, originally aired December 23, 1954
Fireside Theatre, episode Murderer's Wife, originally aired June 7, 1955
Studio 57, episode Secret Message, originally aired May 24, 1955
Science Fiction Theatre, episode The Brain of John Emerson, originally aired May 20, 1955
Science Fiction Theatre, episode No Food for Thought, originally aired April 22, 1955
The Ford Television Theatre, episode Deception, originally aired April 7, 1955
The Millionaire, episode The Betty Jane Ryan Story, originally aired March 16, 1955
The Pepsi-Cola Playhouse, episode The Quiet Wife, originally aired February 27, 1955
Fireside Theatre, episode Brian, originally aired February 1, 1955
General Electric Theater, episode Committed, originally aired December 5, 1954
Studio 57, episode Ring Once for Death, originally aired September 21, 1954
Letter to Loretta, episode The Judgment, originally aired May 2, 1954
Four Star Playhouse, episode Lady of the Orchids, originally aired March 18, 1954
Suspense, episode Pigeons in the Cave, originally aired July 21, 1953
The Bigelow Theatre, episode Flowers for John, originally aired December 6, 1951
Lights Out, episode Just What Happened, originally aired October 9, 1950
NBC Presents, episode Entrapment, originally aired May 30, 1949

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Watch John Howard's 1939 mystery Bulldog Drummond's Secret Police
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This page premiered October 9, 2003.