- Fonda, Henry
- (1905-1982)Born in Grand Island, Nebraska, Henry Fonda abandoned study at the University of Minnesota to become an actor. After working in theater in Omaha, he moved to New York and through the 1920s performed in a variety of roles in productions with the University Players Guild Falmouth and the National Junior Theater. His first appearance on Broadway was in 1929, but his first major role was in The Farmer Takes a Wife in 1934, and he starred in the film version the following year. Fonda subsequently combined theater and movie acting and in 1939 starred to some acclaim in John Ford’s Mr. Lincoln. This was followed by Drums along the Mohawk. It was, however, as Tom Joad in the film version of John Steinbeck’s powerful novel about the “Okies,” The Grapes of Wrath (1940), that Fonda was nominated for an Academy Award.Fonda made a number of films for 20th Century Fox in the early 1940s, perhaps most notably The Ox Bow Incident in 1943. He then enlisted in the navy and resumed his acting career in 1946 with the film My Darling Clementine and The Fugitive in 1947. His theater performance in Mr. Roberts in 1955 won him a Tony Award, and he was also praised for his performance as a juror in the film 12 Angry Men in 1957. Fonda won an Oscar for his last film, On Golden Pond, made in 1981. The Academy of Arts awarded him a Lifetime Achievement Award in 1978, and he was given a special Tony Award in 1979 for his contribution to theater.See also Cinema.
Historical Dictionary of the Roosevelt–Truman Era . Neil A. Wynn . 2015.