Born in Hartford, Connecticut, on January 14, 1926, actor Tom Tryon grew up in Wethersfield, Connecticut. During World War II, he enlisted in the Navy at age 17 and served through 1946. Upon leaving the Navy, Tryon studied art at Yale and after graduation drifted to New York City, where he studied at the Art Students League. By the early 1950s, he had embarked upon an acting career, working in early television and acting on Broadway. His first Broadway appearance was in the play Wish You Were Here in 1952. After being noticed in a television appearance by producer Hal Wallis, Tryon signed a contract with Paramount Studios in 1955.

Tom Tryon made a string of B films in the 1950s, most notably The Unholy Wife (1957; with Diana Dors) and I Married a Monster from Outer Space (1958; with Gloria Talbott). In the early 1960s, Tryon made the leap to "A" pictures, but a bad experience with director Otto Preminger on the set of The Cardinal (1963; with Carol Lynley and John Saxon) and In Harm's Way (1965; with John Wayne and Kirk Douglas) convinced Tryon to find another profession, although he made a few more films and several television appearances throughout the 1960s.

the films of tom tryon

The Scarlet Hour (1956)

Tom Tryon and Carol Ohmart

From Paramount's film noir thriller The Scarlet Hour with Carol Ohmart. This was Tryon's first film

Three Violent People (1956)

Tom Tryon

As Cinch Saunders in the Paramount western Three Violent People

The Unholy Wife (1957)

Diana Dors and Tom Tryon

With Diana Dors in the RKO crime drama The Unholy Wife

I Married a Monster From Outer Space (1958)

Tom Tryon and Gloria Talbott

A good movie with a great explotation title, I Married a Monster From Outer Space was produced by Paramount for about $170,000. Also pictured is Gloria Talbott

Texas John Slaughter (1958-1961 ABC TV Series)

Dan Duryea and Tom Tryon

With Dan Duryea in a January 1959 episode of Texas John Slaughter titled Showdown at Sandoval

The Story of Ruth (1960)

Elana Eden and Tom Tryon

From the 20th Century Fox costume drama The Story of Ruth. LEFT: With Elana Eden as the title character

Marines, Let's Go! (1961)

David Hedison and Tom Tryon

With David Hedison in the 20th Century Fox comedy Marines, Let's Go!

Moon Pilot (1962)

Tom TryonNancy Kulp, Tom Tryon, and Brian Keith

From the Walt Disney family comedy Moon Pilot. LEFT: As Captain Richmond Talbot. RIGHT: With Nancy Kulp and Brian Keith

The Cardinal (1963)

Tom Tryon

From Otto Preminger's big-budget drama The Cardinal

The Glory Guys (1965)

Tom Tryon

From the independent western The Glory Guys

The Big Valley (1965-1969 ABC TV Series)

Tom Tryon

Tryon in a 1966 episode of ABC's The Big Valley titled The Midas Man

Winchester 73 (1966)

Tom Tryon

Tryon portrayed Lin McAdam in the NBC TV movie Winchester 73

The Narco Men (1967)

Tom TryonTom Tryon

From the Spanish-Italian crime thriller The Narco Men

Color Me Dead (1969)

Tom Tryon and Pat Connolly

With Pat Connolly in the thriller Color Me Dead, one of Tryon's last films

later years

In the late 1960s, with his acting career floundering, Tom Tryon turned his energies to writing and became highly successful with his science fiction works such as his 1971 novel The Other. He continued to write novels for the next twenty years, while suffering from and eventually overcoming a drinking problem. Just a year after his novel The Wings of Morning was published, Tryon died of stomach cancer at the age of 65 on September 4, 1991, in his Beverly Hills home. He was survived by two brothers.

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The Horsemen (1971) with Omar Sharif, Leigh Taylor-Young, and Jack Palance
Color Me Dead (1969) with Carolyn Jones and Rick Jason
The Narco Men (1967) with Richard Deacon and Raf Baldassarre
Winchester 73 (1967) with John Saxon, Dan Duryea, John Drew Barrymore, Joan Blondell, John Dehner, William Kerwin, and Barbara Luna
The Glory Guys (1965) with Harve Presnell, Senta Berger, Michael Anderson Jr., James Caan, Slim Pickens, Andrew Duggan, Peter Breck, Jeanne Cooper, and Wayne Rogers
In Harm's Way (1965) with John Wayne, Kirk Douglas, Patricia Neal, Paula Prentiss, Dana Andrews, Burgess Meredith, and Franchot Tone
The Cardinal (1963) with Carol Lynley, Dorothy Gish, Bill Hayes, Cecil Kellaway, and John Saxon
The Longest Day (1962) with an all-star cast
Moon Pilot (1962) with Brian Keith, Edmond O'Brien, Dany Saval, and Tommy Kirk
Something's Got to Give (1962) with Marilyn Monroe, Dean Martin, Cyd Charisse, Wally Cox, and Phil Silvers (never completed)
Marines, Let's Go (1961) with David Hedison, Tom Reese, and Barbara Stuart
The Story of Ruth (1960) with Stuart Whitman, Viveca Lindfors, Jeff Morrow, Les Tremayne, John Gabriel, and Ziva Rodann
I Married a Monster from Outer Space (1958) with Gloria Talbott, Peter Baldwin, Ty Hardin, and Maxie Rosenbloom
The Unholy Wife (1957) with Diana Dors, Rod Steiger, Beulah Bondi, Marie Windsor, and Arthur Franz
Three Violent People (1956) with Charlton Heston, Anne Baxter, Gilbert Roland, Forrest Tucker, Bruce Bennett, Elaine Stritch, and Robert Blake
Screaming Eagles (1956) with Jan Merlin, Martin Milner, Joe Di Reda, Alvy Moore, Paul Burke, Robert Blake, and Robert Dix
The Scarlet Hour (1956) with Carol Ohmart, James Gregory, Elaine Stritch, and E.G. Marshall

The Wonderful World of Disney: Texas John Slaughter, 1958-1961 ABC television series. Tryon portrayed the title character in 17 episodes

The Virginian, episode The Price of the Hanging, originally aired November 11, 1970
The Virginian, episode Star Crossed, originally aired October 4, 1967
Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre, episode Wipeout, originally aired April 26, 1967
The Road West, episode Charade of Justice, originally aired March 27, 1967
The Virginian, episode Girl on the Glass Mountain, originally aired December 28, 1966
The Big Valley, episode The Midas Man, originally aired April 13, 1966
Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre, episode Mr. Governess, originally aired November 10, 1965
Kraft Suspense Theatre, episode Nobody Will Ever Know, originally aired March 25, 1965
Dr. Kildare, episode The Mosaic, originally aired January 31, 1963
The Virginian, episode The Man from the Sea, originally aired December 26, 1962
The Millionaire, episode The Tony Drummond Story, originally aired April 9, 1958
G.E. True Theater, episode Strange Witness, originally aired March 23, 1958
The Restless Gun, episode Sheriff Billy, originally aired March 10, 1958
Wagon Train, episode The Mark Hanford Story, originally aired February 26, 1958
Matinee Theatre, episode Dark of the Moon, originally aired December 13, 1957
Matinee Theatre, episode The Story of Sarah, originally aired September 22, 1957
Lux Video Theatre, episode Design for November, originally aired June 13, 1957
Zane Grey Theater, episode Black Is for Grief, originally aired April 12, 1957
Matinee Theatre, episode Wuthering Heights, originally aired April 8, 1957
Playhouse 90, episode Charley's Aunt, originally aired March 28, 1957
The 20th Century-Fox Hour, episode Springfield Incident, originally aired February 6, 1957
Jane Wyman Presents The Fireside Theatre, episode Birthright, originally aired February 5, 1957
NBC Matinee Theatre, episode The Fall of the House of Usher, originally aired August 6, 1956
Jane Wyman Presents The Fireside Theatre, episode The Mirror, originally aired February 28, 1956
Jane Wyman Presents The Fireside Theatre, episode Not What She Pretended, originally aired February 7, 1956
Frontier, episode King of the Dakotas: Parts 1 and 2, originally aired November 8 and 20, 1955

tom tryon film now showing

Watch Tom Tryon in a 1956 early color episode of NBC Matinee Theater titled The Fall of the House of Usher

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This page premiered August 6, 2010.