Spencer Charters


Burly, puffy-cheeked American actor Spencer Charters entered films in 1923, after decades of stage experience. In his first talkie appearances (Whoopee [1930], The Bat Whispers [1931], etc.), Charters was often seen as an ill-tempered authority figure. Traces of this characterization continued into such mid-'30s efforts as Wheeler and Woolsey's Hips Hips Hooray, but before the decade was over Charters was firmly locked into playing such benign types as rustic sheriffs, bucolic hotel clerks and half-asleep justices of the peace. Advancing age and the attendant infirmities made it difficult for Charters to play anything other than one-scene bits by the early '40s. At the age of 68, he ended his life by downing an overdose of sleeping pills and then inhaling the exhaust fumes of his car.