Person Details

Birthday: 1902-12-25 06:11:39

Death: 1969-01-01 06:11:39

Aliases: Ernest Barton MacLane , Barton Mac Lane , Barton Maclane , Barton McLane

Gender: Male

Place of birth: Columbia, South Carolina, USA


Movie Involvements: 115

TV Involvements: 1

Most Famous Work


Barton MacLane graduated from Wesleyan University, where he displayed a notable aptitude for sports, in particular football and basketball. Not surprisingly, his physical prowess led to an early role in The Quarterback (1926) with Richard Dix. MacLane once commented that, as an actor, he needed to have the physical strength to tear the bad guys "from limb to limb", if necessary. Ironically, it was usually Barton himself who was destined to be at the end of a hiding (when not getting shot, instead), typically as snarling henchmen, outlaws and other assorted dubious or abrasive types throughout most of his 40-year acting career. In fact, Barton became so typecast that his name was for a time used proverbially, to generally describe a shouting, hard-nosed ruffian. After training at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, MacLane joined a stock company in Brooklyn. In 1927 he had his first part on Broadway, a brief moment as an assistant district attorney, in the melodrama "The Trial of Mary Dugan". He then played a small featured role as a police officer in "Subway Express" (1929-30), a drama enacted in the interior of a subway car. In mid-1932 MacLane tried his hand at writing his own starring vehicle for the stage, entitled "Rendezvous". While the play closed after just 21 performances, it led to a contract with Warner Brothers. Barton had already appeared in bit roles for Paramount at their Astoria Studios, including The Marx Brothers' debut film The Cocoanuts (1929). He portrayed mobster Brad Collins in 'G' Men (1935) (with James Cagney), which set the tone for most of his future assignments. Brawny, with squinty eyes and a rasping voice, MacLane was the ideal surly tough guy, particularly suitable for westerns and the type of films noir Warner Brothers excelled at. He was often cast as cops, be they bent or honest. Some of his most representative performances include gangster Al Kruger in Bullets or Ballots (1936), which won him some of the best critical notices of his career; outlaw Jack Slade in Western Union (1941); crooked construction boss Pat McCormick, who gets beaten up by Humphrey Bogart and Tim Holt over past-due wages in The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948); hard-nosed cops Detective Dundy in The Maltese Falcon (1941) and Lt. Reece in Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye (1950). MacLane, on loan to Universal, also had a starring role in Prison Break (1938) as an innocent tuna fisherman who is framed for murder. He was prominent as a tough but sympathetic cop, foil to sleuthing girl reporter Glenda Farrell in the "Torchy Blaine" series of the mid- to late 1930s. In the 1960s Barton began to cultivate a good-guy image as Marshal Frank Caine in the NBC western series Outlaws (1960) as well as showing up in a small recurring role as Air Force Gen. Martin Peterson in I Dream of Jeannie (1965). Barton was married to the actress Charlotte Wynters, who appeared with him in six of his films. When not on the set, the couple spent time on their 2000-acre cattle ranch in Madera County, California. For his work in television, Barton has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Most Famous Work

The Maltese Falcon

The Maltese Falcon

(1941) Det. Lt. Dundy
The Treasure of the Sierra Madre

The Treasure of the Sierra Madre

(1948) Pat McCormick
High Sierra

High Sierra

(1941) Jake Kranmer
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

(1941) Sam Higgins
Tarzan and the Amazons

Tarzan and the Amazons

(1945) Ballister


(1960) Marshal Frank Caine
The Glenn Miller Story

The Glenn Miller Story

(1954) Gen. Hap Arnold, USAAF
You Only Live Once

You Only Live Once

(1937) Stephen Whitney


Year Character Movie/Tv
1997 N/A
1983 Himself (archive footage)
1976 N/A
1968 Dr. H. 'Doc' Raymond
Sheriff Grover
1967 N/A
1966 N/A
1965 N/A
James Fell
1964 N/A
Big Tom Stone
1961 Police Commissioner (as Barton Maclane)
1960 Marshal Frank Caine
Carl Avery
1959 N/A
1958 Major Ridgley
Simon Crayle
Francis J. Brannigan
1957 N/A
Lem Gotch
Clyde O'Connell
1956 Yates
Joe Barnum
Det. Lt. Dan Coster
Karl Shanks
Sgt. George Lake
Steve Bailey
1955 Mosby, Gang Leader
Captain Jenkins, Head Guard
Jim Mablett
Henry 'Tiny' Longtree
Chalk Reynolds
1954 Sheriff Olson
Deacon Bartlett
Lee Graham
Gen. Hap Arnold, USAAF
1953 Jules Reni
Capt. Jack Matthews
Captain Scarface
Marvin Parker
Cal Bruce
1952 Sgt. Durkee
Marshal Cassidy
Capt. Myles Moylan
1951 N/A
Sgt. Mac McCardle
1950 Sheriff Jim Harden
Larry Channock
Lieutenant John Reece
1949 Detective Strecker
1948 Rufus J. "Gotch" McCurdy
Max Giorgio
Capt. Tarnowski
Tex Brandow
Texas Jack Barton
'Banjo' Sweeney
Pat McCormick
1947 Case Hagin
Webb Yancey
Paul Weir
1946 Nick Taylor
Detective Taggart
1945 Capt. Benjamin Black
George 'Deacon' Markham
1944 Sheriff Tatum
Lt. Barry Lane
Red Kelly
Sgt. Maguire
Inspector Walgreen
Carl Hurst
1943 Detective Rief
John Tate
Jim Calvert
Archie Dixon
John Wallace
1942 Leo Bronson
Case Ables
Marty Callahan
1941 Det. Lt. Dundy
Pirate Kelly
Sam Higgins
Smiley Quinn
James J. Ryan
John Kelly
Jack Slade
Barney Grogan
Jake Kranmer
1940 Mark Wildhack
Blackie Drew
Jim Ramsey
1939 Red Manson
Steve McBride
Phil Daley
Ace King
Det. Lt. Steve 'Mac' McBride
1938 Detective Steve McBride
Captain Cogswell
Joaquin Shannon
Mickey Bain
Slag Martin
Gunner Malone
Lt. Steve McBride
1937 Det. Lt. Steve McBride
Jim Turner
Al McCoy
Jim Barnes
Steve McBride
Lt. Druggin
Andrew Beaupre
John Canty
Stephen Whitney
Steve McBride
1936 Himself
Detective Captain Rourke
Cliff Ballenger
Al Kruger
Casey (Vic's Butler/Trainer)
Al Stone
1935 Himself (uncredited)
Chris Bennett
Spikder Burke
Clifton Jeffords
Red Bastian
Duke Hutchinson
Detective Lucas
1934 Charley Benson
First Cop
1933 Commissioner McLennan
Neil Stanley
Henchman Pruitt
1931 Crewman
Cafe Customer
Detective with Handcuffs
Year Character Movie/Tv


Year Role Movie/Tv
1943 Screenplay
Year Role Movie/Tv

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