Orson Welles was born in Kenosha, Wisconsin in 1915. As a young
man, Welles appeared on the series Cavalcade of America and
The March of Time before writing, directing and starring
in the Mutual networks 1937 production of Victor Hugos
Les Miserables. That fall, Welles assumed the title role
on The Shadow, while earning raves on Broadway with his new
troupe, the Mercury Theater.
In July of 1938, The Mercury Theater on the Air came to
CBS. This weekly, hour-long series starred Welles in adaptations
of classic literature, including Dracula, The
Count of Monte Cristo and The War of the Worlds,
which presented H.G. Wells story as a startling live
report of Martians attacking earth. The broadcast caused a national
panic and became the most famous radio broadcast of all time.
Welles launched a successful film career in 1941, co-writing, directing
and starring in the legendary Citizen Kane, The Magnificent
Ambersons and Touch of Evil. He remained active in radio
throughout his career, later starring in the BBC series The Third
Manbased on his 1949 filmand The Black Museum.
Orson Welles died on October 10, 1985.
Orson Welles was inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame in 1988.
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