Shot-putter-turned-actor dies at 100

Herman Brix, an Olympic shot-putting champion-turned-actor who played Tarzan in a 1935 movie, died Feb. 24 in Los Angeles of complications from a broken hip. He was 100.

Brix, who was born in Tacoma, Wash., was a track star at the University of Washington, where he also played football and was in the 1926 Rose Bowl game. In 1928, he won the Olympic silver medal for the shot put.

“Tarzan” author Edgar Rice Burroughs picked Brix to star in the independently produced “The New Adventures of Tarzan.”

Brix went on to appear in more than a dozen movies but he was concerned that his Tarzan appearance had typecast him in action roles. He began working under the name of Bruce Bennett.

Under that name, he appeared in dozens of movies. He was Joan Crawford’s husband in the 1945 melodrama “Mildred Pierce,” for which she won her Oscar. In 1948’s “The Treasure of the Sierra Madre,” he played a prospector who encounters Humphrey Bogart’s character and later is killed by bandits.

He also did TV guest appearances in series such as “The Virginian” and “Perry Mason.”

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