Lionel Alfred William Atwill (1 March 1885 22 April 1946) was an English stage and film actor. He became a star in Broadway theatre by 1918 and made his screen debut in 1919.
He acted on the stage in Australia before becoming involved in U.S. horror film roles in the 1930s, including leading roles in Doctor X (1932), The Vampire Bat, Murders in the Zoo and Mystery of the Wax Museum (all 1933), and perhaps most memorably as the one-armed Inspector Krogh in Son of Frankenstein (1939), a role famously parodied by Kenneth Mars in Mel Brooks' 1974 satire Young Frankenstein. He appeared in four subsequent Universal Frankenstein films, as well as many other of the studio's beloved chillers.
His other roles include a romantic lead opposite Marlene Dietrich in Josef von Sternberg's The Devil Is a Woman (1935), a crooked insurance investigator in The Wrong Road (1937) for RKO, Dr. James Mortimer in 20th Century Fox's film version of The Hound of the Baskervilles (1939), and Professor Moriarty in the Universal Studios film Sherlock Holmes and the Secret Weapon (1943). He also had a rare comedy role in Ernst Lubitsch's 1942 classic To Be or Not to Be and that same year menaced Abbott and Costello in Pardon My Sarong. He died during the filming of his last project, the Universal serial Lost City of the Jungle, causing the makers to use a Fake Shemp.
Lionel Atwill on TV Tropes:
- Doctor X (1932) as Dr. Jerry Xavier
- The Vampire Bat (1933) as Dr. Otto von Niemann
- Mystery of the Wax Museum (1933) as Ivan Igor
- Murders in the Zoo (1933) as Eric Gorman
- The Age of Innocence (1934) as Julius Beaufort
- Mark of the Vampire (1935) as Inspector Neumann
- The Murder Man (1935) as Captain Cole
- Captain Blood (1935) as Colonel Bishop
- Son of Frankenstein (1939) as Inspector Krogh
- The Three Musketeers (1939) as De Rochefort
- The Hound of the Baskervilles (1939) as James Mortimer M.D.
- The Secret of Dr. Kildare (1939) as Paul Messenger
- Charlie Chan in Panama (1940) as Cliveden Compton
- Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise (1940) as Dr. Suderman
- Boom Town (1940) as Harry Compton
- To Be or Not to Be (1941) as Rawitch
- The Ghost of Frankenstein (1942) as Doctor Theodore Bohmer
- Sherlock Holmes and the Secret Weapon (1943) as Moriarty
- Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943) as Mayor
- House of Frankenstein (1944) as Inspector Arnz
- House of Dracula (1945) as Police Inspector Holtz
- Lost City of the Jungle (1946) as Sir Eric Hazarias