Dan Seymour, who portrayed hefty villains in such Humphrey Bogart classics as “To Have and Have Not,” has died. He was 78.
Seymour died May 25 at St. John’s Medical Center in Santa Monica from complications of a stroke he suffered two months ago, his son Jeff said.
Born in Chicago, Seymour was a burlesque song-and-dance man and comic in New York before moving to Hollywood, where the 250-pound actor was mainly cast as a bad guy.
“I’ve always enjoyed during villains,” he once said.
Perhaps the best-known of his 70 film and 300 television roles was as Abdul the Arab, the door guard at Rick’s casino in the 1943 Bogart film, “Casablanca.”
He had larger roles in “To Have and Have Not” and “Key Largo.”
“Dark, plump, crunch-faced, blue-jowled Seymour was one of the slimiest Hollywood villains of the 1940s, his ‘inverted’ mouth twisting frequently into a scowl, as he contemplated committing some new and more painful mayhem on the hero,” according to The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Movie Character Actors.
Off-camera, the good-natured Seymour was an accomplice to many of Bogart’s practical jokes. He once convinced a terrified beginning actor on “Key Largo” that Bogart was going to fire real bullets in a scene.
Seymour felt that having fun was an acting tool.
“Once you have fun doing a part, you breathe life into a character,” he once said.
He is survived by his wife, Evelyn, two sons, Gregory and Jeff, and four grandchildren.