A Great Character Actor — Skip Homeier

Although he’s been retired from movies and television since the early 1980s, actor Skip Homeier is a talented character actor whose face will be familiar to almost anyone with a passing interest in popular entertainment.  Born in 1930, Homeier started out as a child actor on stage and made his big screen debut repeating his theater role playing a young teenage Nazi being assimilated into American life in 1944’s Tomorrow the World, a shocking portrayal that he had originated on Broadway.  Young Homeier more than held his own opposite screen veteran Fredric March who starred as the man who took young Emil into his home and tried to do a political makeover on the young herr .  Skip’s performance as the cold and calculating Hitler Youth who eventually begins to see the light was electrifying and unpleasant, and unfortunately somewhat typecast Homeier as a bad guy, even well into his adult career.

Skip fairly successfully navigated the always-awkward transition from child star into an adult actor, fortunately continuing to land supporting roles in motion pictures.  Frequently appearing in westerns and action films like 1950′s The Gunfighter and Halls of Montezuma, 1951′s Fixed Bayonets!, 1954′s Cry Vengeance, and other solid B-level titles, he was usually fifth or six billed but a solid addition to any movie he was in.  He also began his incredibly prolific career as a television guest star in the early 1950s, eventually appearing in well north of a hundred (by conservative estimate) TV episodes on every popular and not-so-popular series that you could name.  The talented and versatile Skip worked on most of the popular dramatic anthologies of the era, such as Robert Montgomery Presents, Schlitz Playhouse, Science Fiction Theater, Lux Video Theatre, Alfred Hitchcock Presents, Studio One in Hollywood, and many others. 

He got his own series Dan Raven in 1960 starring as a tough Sunset Strip police detective, but sadly it lasted for only 13 episodes.  (Bobby Darin starred as himself in the premiere episode!).  If you watched TV during the 1960s and 1970s, you couldn’t miss Skip Homeier –  Mission: Impossible, The Virginian, Combat!, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, Rawhide, Bonanza, Burke’s Law, Death Valley Days — he guest-starred on these and so many other series.  You also might have seen him as the judge in the TV Movie Helter Skelter about the Manson murders, and at the movies he was a memorable foil to Don Knotts in his great The Ghost and Mr. Chicken.  Be sure to look at his entire IMDb listing to see what an outstanding presence he was on our big and small screen for many years. 

Any TV fan worth his or her salt will recall his pair of memorable guest roles on classic Star Trek, first as a – guess what! – Nazi-wannabe on a planet which had been corrupted by contact with WWII Earth history in the episode “Patterns of Force”, and in Trek’s third, last and sometimes a bit silly season as the brilliant but insane leader of a band of space hippies searching for “The Way to Eden”.  As farfetched as the episodes may sound on paper, Skip Homeier was memorable and effective in them and no doubt these two Trek appearances will turn out to be his immortal legacy.  Homeier was also particularly wonderful in a nutty but fascinating segment of the original The Outer Limits, as a scientist who dabbles with mind-expanding drugs to disastrous effect. 

Skip Homeier’s last appearances were in a couple of segments of the Jack Klugman’s medical investigator series Quincy, M.E..  His intelligent, often conflicted, and always interesting on-screen presence has been sorely missed these many years.  Be sure to keep an eye out for him as you watch classic movies or vintage TV, and you might be lucky enough to be rewarded with a Skip Homeier sighting. Happy Hunting!

33 Responses A Great Character Actor — Skip Homeier
Posted By dukeroberts : August 17, 2011 10:39 pm

My favorite Skip performance was as Billy Jack in the Randolph Scott western The Tall T, directed by Budd Boetticher. That is a great frickin’ movie and Skip rounds out a great cast including Richard Boone (Paladin!), Henry Silva as the bloodthirsty, unrepentant killer Chink and Maureen O’Sullivan (“Tarzan. Jane. Tarzan. Jane.”). He plays a guy who just ended up on the wrong side of the law due to not being too bright. He’s a bad guy that you can’t help but feel a little sorry for. Check it out if you haven’t seen it before.

Posted By dukeroberts : August 17, 2011 10:39 pm

My favorite Skip performance was as Billy Jack in the Randolph Scott western The Tall T, directed by Budd Boetticher. That is a great frickin’ movie and Skip rounds out a great cast including Richard Boone (Paladin!), Henry Silva as the bloodthirsty, unrepentant killer Chink and Maureen O’Sullivan (“Tarzan. Jane. Tarzan. Jane.”). He plays a guy who just ended up on the wrong side of the law due to not being too bright. He’s a bad guy that you can’t help but feel a little sorry for. Check it out if you haven’t seen it before.

Posted By NCeddie : August 17, 2011 11:33 pm

Thank you pointing out– and naming– another character actor of remarkable longevity. Good character actors and actresses are like sap in a tree–subconsciously, we know they are there, often unbilled. And like sap does for a tree, a movie/TV project is ultimately more alive because character actors, too, know their craft, and twinkle sublimely among the “real” stars.

Posted By NCeddie : August 17, 2011 11:33 pm

Thank you pointing out– and naming– another character actor of remarkable longevity. Good character actors and actresses are like sap in a tree–subconsciously, we know they are there, often unbilled. And like sap does for a tree, a movie/TV project is ultimately more alive because character actors, too, know their craft, and twinkle sublimely among the “real” stars.

Posted By AL : August 18, 2011 4:03 pm

Thank you for acknowledging this versatile reliable accomplished overlooked actor. He never f***** up; he always NAILED IT!

Posted By AL : August 18, 2011 4:03 pm

Thank you for acknowledging this versatile reliable accomplished overlooked actor. He never f***** up; he always NAILED IT!

Posted By suzidoll : August 19, 2011 11:19 am

I remember him from the STAR TREK episodes. What a career. Good to see you back on the Morlocks site.

Posted By suzidoll : August 19, 2011 11:19 am

I remember him from the STAR TREK episodes. What a career. Good to see you back on the Morlocks site.

Posted By Juana Maria : August 20, 2011 7:20 pm

I remember him from “Star Trek” too. He was in the “Bonanza” episode called “A Horse of a Color”. Can you remember if he was he a film with Lee Marvin?

Posted By Juana Maria : August 20, 2011 7:20 pm

I remember him from “Star Trek” too. He was in the “Bonanza” episode called “A Horse of a Color”. Can you remember if he was he a film with Lee Marvin?

Posted By morlockjeff : August 20, 2011 8:15 pm

I’ve always remembered Homeier as the trigger-itchy punk gunning for Gregory Peck in THE GUNFIGHTER – you SO want to see him get his just reward – and as the sadistic husband of Beverly Garland in the depraved low-budget melodrama STARK FEAR (1963) which deserves a much larger cult following than it has.

Posted By morlockjeff : August 20, 2011 8:15 pm

I’ve always remembered Homeier as the trigger-itchy punk gunning for Gregory Peck in THE GUNFIGHTER – you SO want to see him get his just reward – and as the sadistic husband of Beverly Garland in the depraved low-budget melodrama STARK FEAR (1963) which deserves a much larger cult following than it has.

Posted By Juana Maria : August 24, 2011 12:55 pm

You are so mistaken Morlock Jeff! Shame on you, it is none other than Richard Jaeckel in “The Gunfighter”. Read the credits, do research. I have never seen “Stark Fear”, will probably look for it in the future. Thanks. Remember, I’m quite the Westerns fan, few details like credits/cast get by me!

Posted By Juana Maria : August 24, 2011 12:55 pm

You are so mistaken Morlock Jeff! Shame on you, it is none other than Richard Jaeckel in “The Gunfighter”. Read the credits, do research. I have never seen “Stark Fear”, will probably look for it in the future. Thanks. Remember, I’m quite the Westerns fan, few details like credits/cast get by me!

Posted By morlockjeff : August 25, 2011 10:15 am

Juana,

Yes, Richard Jaeckel is in The GUNFIGHTER but Skip Homeier (who is billed before him in the credits) plays the weasel Hunt Bromley.

Posted By morlockjeff : August 25, 2011 10:15 am

Juana,

Yes, Richard Jaeckel is in The GUNFIGHTER but Skip Homeier (who is billed before him in the credits) plays the weasel Hunt Bromley.

Posted By Jenni : August 25, 2011 11:54 am

As I scrolled down the article and saw the clips from Star Trek, yes, I do now remember Skip Hormeier. I saw Tall T, but didn’t realize he was one-third of Richard Boone’s evil gang. What I also recall about Skip Homeier was his voice-great one to listen to.

Posted By Jenni : August 25, 2011 11:54 am

As I scrolled down the article and saw the clips from Star Trek, yes, I do now remember Skip Hormeier. I saw Tall T, but didn’t realize he was one-third of Richard Boone’s evil gang. What I also recall about Skip Homeier was his voice-great one to listen to.

Posted By Juana Maria : August 25, 2011 6:08 pm

Morlock Jeff, I am sorry that I typed before thinking. You are right Skip Homeier is in “The Gunfighter”. I am not an authority on every Western like I wrote. Again, I am deeply sorry.

Posted By Juana Maria : August 25, 2011 6:08 pm

Morlock Jeff, I am sorry that I typed before thinking. You are right Skip Homeier is in “The Gunfighter”. I am not an authority on every Western like I wrote. Again, I am deeply sorry.

Posted By Juana Maria : August 26, 2011 12:25 pm

I too have seen “The Tall T”, great cast. It is similiar in some ways with”Ride Lonesome”,”The Bravados”,and “Seven Men From Now”.In the same vein are “Posse from Hell” and “Naked Spur”. Have you seen these? I like them and watch them on TV when they are on. Adios!

Posted By Juana Maria : August 26, 2011 12:25 pm

I too have seen “The Tall T”, great cast. It is similiar in some ways with”Ride Lonesome”,”The Bravados”,and “Seven Men From Now”.In the same vein are “Posse from Hell” and “Naked Spur”. Have you seen these? I like them and watch them on TV when they are on. Adios!

Posted By morlockjeff : August 26, 2011 3:03 pm

Juana, no offense taken. I happen to like Richard Jaeckel a lot too and he deserves a blog post at some point.

Posted By morlockjeff : August 26, 2011 3:03 pm

Juana, no offense taken. I happen to like Richard Jaeckel a lot too and he deserves a blog post at some point.

Posted By dukeroberts : August 26, 2011 3:10 pm

I have seen Ride Lonesome, Seven Men from Now and The Naked Spur. Westerns from the fifties didn’t get much better than the Randolph Scott/Budd Boetticher and Jimmy Stewart/Anthony Mann flicks. Great stuff.

Posted By dukeroberts : August 26, 2011 3:10 pm

I have seen Ride Lonesome, Seven Men from Now and The Naked Spur. Westerns from the fifties didn’t get much better than the Randolph Scott/Budd Boetticher and Jimmy Stewart/Anthony Mann flicks. Great stuff.

Posted By Medusa Morlock : August 26, 2011 3:18 pm

Richard Jaeckel! Now there’s another great character actor! I recalled his tremendous death scene in “Sometimes a Great Notion” a while back here: http://moviemorlocks.com/2008/11/20/nobody-gets-out-alive/

Thinking of all those tough little Westerns…what a bunch of fascinating tight tales, with such terrific no=nonsense actors! I can’t wait to catch more of them! I seem to see some of these titles on the Encore Western channel; next time I’m going to make it a point to watch.

I just wish Skip Homeier hadn’t retired so early — what a tremendous talent!

Posted By Medusa Morlock : August 26, 2011 3:18 pm

Richard Jaeckel! Now there’s another great character actor! I recalled his tremendous death scene in “Sometimes a Great Notion” a while back here: http://moviemorlocks.com/2008/11/20/nobody-gets-out-alive/

Thinking of all those tough little Westerns…what a bunch of fascinating tight tales, with such terrific no=nonsense actors! I can’t wait to catch more of them! I seem to see some of these titles on the Encore Western channel; next time I’m going to make it a point to watch.

I just wish Skip Homeier hadn’t retired so early — what a tremendous talent!

Posted By Juana Maria : August 27, 2011 3:58 pm

I didn’t see these titles on Encore Westerns since we don’t have that channel. I love character actors better than a lot of the BIG name stars. Morlock Jeff no offense taken. I love when others share my passion/obsession for Westerns and great character actors. Please do write about them as much as you can!
L.Q. Jones, Warren Oates, John Davis Chandler, Sheb Wooley, Strother Martin, Slim Pickens, Dub Taylor, & Jack Elam are some of my all time favorites.

Posted By Juana Maria : August 27, 2011 3:58 pm

I didn’t see these titles on Encore Westerns since we don’t have that channel. I love character actors better than a lot of the BIG name stars. Morlock Jeff no offense taken. I love when others share my passion/obsession for Westerns and great character actors. Please do write about them as much as you can!
L.Q. Jones, Warren Oates, John Davis Chandler, Sheb Wooley, Strother Martin, Slim Pickens, Dub Taylor, & Jack Elam are some of my all time favorites.

Posted By Juana Maria : August 27, 2011 4:00 pm

Henry Silva, Alfonso Arau, Alfonso Bedoya, El Indio Fernandez, Roberto Contreras, Thann Wyenn, Brit Lomond, Don Diamond, Henry Calvin,there are so many!

Posted By Juana Maria : August 27, 2011 4:00 pm

Henry Silva, Alfonso Arau, Alfonso Bedoya, El Indio Fernandez, Roberto Contreras, Thann Wyenn, Brit Lomond, Don Diamond, Henry Calvin,there are so many!

Posted By virginia hudson : September 3, 2014 3:45 pm

Skip, aka G.V. is a wonderful and very unappreciated actor in Hollywood who should have been a major star. He appeared this morning as the defendant in “The Case of the Pathetic Patient” on MeTV’s Perry Mason. I have many favorite performances by Skip, including the two Star Trek episodes and many films, especially with Dana Andrews and Claude Raines(as a Nazi).My best wishes to Skip for good health and a long life. Speaking of long life, check out Jan Merlin. How about that guy? He just keeps on going. God Bless you, Skip!

Leave a Reply

Current ye@r *

MovieMorlocks.com is the official blog for TCM. No topic is too obscure or niche to be excluded from our film discussions. And we welcome your comments on our blogs and bloggers.
See more: facebook.com/tcmtv
See more: twitter.com/tcm
3-D  Action Films  Actors  Actors' Endorsements  Actresses  animal stars  Animation  Anime  Anthology Films  Art Direction  Art in Movies  Australian CInema  Autobiography  Avant-Garde  Aviation  Awards  B-movies  Beer in Film  Behind the Scenes  Best of the Year lists  Biography  Biopics  Black Film  Blu-Ray  Books on Film  Boxing films  British Cinema  Canadian Cinema  Character Actors  Chicago Film History  Cinematography  Classic Films  College Life on Film  Comedy  Comic Book Movies  Crime  Czech Film  Dance on Film  Digital Cinema  Directors  Disaster Films  Documentary  Drama  DVD  Early Talkies  Editing  Educational Films  European Influence on American Cinema  Experimental  Exploitation  Fairy Tales on Film  Faith or Christian-based Films  Family Films  Film Composers  Film Criticism  film festivals  Film History in Florida  Film Noir  Film Scholars  Film titles  Filmmaking Techniques  Films About Gambling  Films of the 1960s  Films of the 1980s  Food in Film  Foreign Film  French Film  Gangster films  Genre  Genre spoofs  HD & Blu-Ray  Holiday Movies  Hollywood history  Hollywood lifestyles  Horror  Horror Movies  Icons  independent film  Italian Film  Japanese Film  Korean Film  Literary Adaptations  Martial Arts  Melodramas  Method Acting  Mexican Cinema  Moguls  Monster Movies  Movie Books  Movie Costumes  movie flops  Movie locations  Movie lovers  Movie Reviewers  Movie settings  Movie Stars  Movie titles  Movies about movies  Music in Film  Musicals  Outdoor Cinema  Paranoid Thrillers  Parenting on film  Pirate movies  Polish film industry  political thrillers  Politics in Film  Pornography  Pre-Code  Producers  Race in American Film  Remakes  Revenge  Road Movies  Romance  Romantic Comedies  Satire  Scandals  Science Fiction  Screenwriters  Semi-documentaries  Serials  Short Films  Silent Film  silent films  Social Problem Film  Sports  Sports on Film  Stereotypes  Straight-to-DVD  Studio Politics  Stunts and stuntmen  Suspense thriller  Swashbucklers  TCM Classic Film Festival  TCM Underground  Television  The British in Hollywood  The Germans in Hollywood  The Hungarians in Hollywood  The Irish in Hollywood  Theaters  Thriller  Trains in movies  Underground Cinema  VOD  War film  Westerns  Women in the Film Industry  Women's Weepies