Person Details

Birthday: 1875-10-26 18:31:57

Death: 1958-12-21 18:31:57

Aliases: Harry Byron Lickfold , Henry B. Warner , H. B. Warner

Gender: Male

Place of birth: London, England, UK


Movie Involvements: 100

TV Involvements: 0

Most Famous Work


Henry Byron Warner was the definitive cinematic Jesus Christ in Cecil B. DeMille's The King of Kings (1927). He was born into a prominent theatrical family on October 26, 1875 in London. His father was Charles Warner, and his grandfather was James Warner, both prominent English actors. He replaced J.B. Warner as Jesus in The King of Kings (1927) when J.B. died of tuberculosis at age 29. (J.B. was not Henry's brother. J.B. had taken the professional last name "Warner" because Henry's family took him in.) Henry Warner's family wanted him to become a doctor, and he graduated from London University but eventually gave up his medical studies. The theater was in his blood, and he studied acting in Paris and Italy before joining his father's stock company, making his debut in the English production of "Drink." It was from his father that he honed his craft. Warner made it to America in the early 1900s, after touring the British Empire. Billed as Harry Warner, he made his Broadway debut in the American colonial drama "Audrey" at Hoyt's Theatre on November 24, 1902, starring James O'Neill, the father of playwright Eugene O'Neill. He was billed as H.B. Warner in his next appearance on Broadway, in the 1906 comedy "Nurse Marjorie." He appeared in 13 more Broadway productions in his career, from the twin-bill of "Susan in Search of a Husband" & "A Tenement Tragedy" (also 1906) to "Silence" in 1925. He moved into motion pictures, making his debut in the Mutual short Harp of Tara (1914). Also in 1914, he appeared in a film written by Cecil B. DeMille for Famous Players Lasky, The Ghost Breaker (1914), in which he had played on Broadway the year before. Warner became a leading man and a star in silent pictures, reaching the zenith of his career playing Jesus in DeMille's The King of Kings (1927). His excellent performance was actually enhanced by the silent screen, allowing the audience to imagine how Jesus would sound. Warner could be extremely moving in silent pictures, notably in the melodrama Sorrell and Son (1927) as a war veteran father who sacrifices all for his son. When talkies arrived, he became a busy supporting player. A favorite of Frank Capra , appeared in Mr. Deeds Goes to Town (1936). Cast again by Capra, he was nominated for Best Supporting Actor in Lost Horizon (1937). He also appeared in You Can't Take It with You (1938), and Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939). Other major talkies included The Devil and Daniel Webster (1941) and Topper Returns (1941). Other than Jesus, the role he is best remembered role for today is in It's a Wonderful Life (1946), in which he played Mr. Gower, the druggist who is saved from committing a lethal medication error by the young George Bailey (the James Stewart character as a child). H.B. Warner appeared in Sunset Blvd. (1950) as himself. His last credited role was as Amminadab in DeMille's The Ten Commandments (1956), a remake of the earlier silent The Ten Commandments (1923). He last role was an uncredited bit part in Darby's Rangers (1958).

Most Famous Work

The Ten Commandments

The Ten Commandments

(1956) Amminadab
It's a Wonderful Life

It's a Wonderful Life

(1946) Mr. Gower
Sunset Boulevard

Sunset Boulevard

(1950) H.B. Warner
Lost Horizon

Lost Horizon

(1937) Chang
All That Money Can Buy

All That Money Can Buy

(1941) Justice Hawthorne
The Rains Came

The Rains Came

(1939) Maharajah
A Tale of Two Cities

A Tale of Two Cities

(1935) Theophile Gabelle
Bulldog Drummond's Secret Police

Bulldog Drummond's Secret Police

(1939) Colonel Nielson


Year Character Movie/Tv
2019 The Son of God
1988 Self (archive footage)
1956 Amminadab
1951 Wiz, the Wino
Uncle Elihu
Father José Sierra
1950 H.B. Warner
1949 Brother Joseph
Judge Fletcher
1948 Gilbert Head
1947 Mr. Slocum
Chief Justice Hayes
Rev. Hollingsworth
1946 Mr. Gower
Sen. McCarden
Dr. Mansfield, plastic surgeon
The Voice of History (voice)
1945 Judge Abbott
1944 Professor Reynolds
Defense Attorney Rankins
Col. Eberhart Brandt
Abdul El Rashid
1943 Pastor Renz
The Bishop
1942 Jeffrey Moore
Herbert Forbes
Prosecuting Attorney
1941 Dr. Enrico Paoli
High Chief Kawalima
Justice Hawthorne
Ray Jardin
Capt. McVeigh
Mr. Carrington
1940 Father Michel
1939 Senate Majority Leader
Hugh Gibson
Colonel Nielson
Richard Lawrence
Colonel Nielson
1938 Colonel Nielsen
Mr. Ramsey
Col. Armstrong
Colonel J. A. Nielsen
Victor Brigard
Angus Rankeiller
Chen Tsu
Father Sienna
1937 British Consul Brent
Lord Melbourne
1936 Dr. Martin
Michael Rankin
Judge May
Godfrey Chiltern
Major Fenwicke-Ralston
Don Pasqual Castro
1935 Theophile Gabelle
Carter Mathews
1934 Henry B. Smith
Hubert Carter
Charlie Miller
Dr Ismay
Captain Stephen Sorrell
1933 Maxwell Davenport
William Gerhardt
Dr. Carl Houston
1932 Sin Kai
Priam Andes
Phillip Brandon
Dr. Brown
Dr. Daniel Gregory
Gerald Waring
Col. Stradimirovitsch
Inspector Tracy
Inspector Fife
1931 Melville Raymond
Michael Townsend
Walter Nichols
Hugh Schmidt
1930 Prince Conrad of Daritzia
Chief Magistrate
Raymond Pryor
Henry Grayson
Inspector Bray
Oliver Bedlow
Major Crespin
1929 Lewis Dike
Dr. Cusick
The Victim - Guillotine Sequence (uncredited)
James Darwin
District Attorney Galway
Prof. Dangerfield
Richard Garson
1928 Sir William Hamilton
James Farnham
Bruce Lowry
Jules Moret
1927 Phillip Grey
Stephen Sorrell
Jesus, The Christ
1926 Jim Warren
'Whispering Smith'
1924 Jordan Southwick
James Sanford Richardson
1923 Bernard Dufresne
1921 Richard Carewe
1920 Felix O'Day
1919 Bruce Winthrop
1917 John Howland
Arnold L'Hommedieu
1916 Prince Tonio
William Berner
Dr. Robert Lowndes
Scott Wells
1914 Warren Jarvis
Reuben Warren
Year Character Movie/Tv

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