Born Charles John Holt III (1919 – 1973). Tim Holt was the son of actor Jack Holt. After five minor roles, in 1938, at the age of nineteen, Holt had a major role under star Harry Carey in The Law West of Tombstone. It was the first of the many Western films he made during the 1940s. At the same time, his sister, Jennifer Holt, also became a leading star in the Western film genre.
After playing young Lieutenant Blanchard in the 1939 classic Stagecoach, Tim Holt had one of the leading roles in Orson Welles's The Magnificent Ambersons (1942). He also starred as a Nazi in Hitler's Children (1943).
By the early 1940s, Tim Holt had his own cowboy series at RKO, replacing the muscular George O'Brien who had retired from films. In the Holt westerns, there were several sidekick groupings --- singer Ray Whitley, Lee 'Lasses' White, whiskered codger Emmett Lynn, and Cliff 'Ukelele Ike' Edwards . Holt did eighteen RKO westerns which were released from 1940-1943, and his first starring role was WAGON TRAIN (RKO, 1940). One of his better films from this period is THE BANDIT TRAIL (RKO, 1941) which features Whitley and 'Lasses' White.
During WWII, Tim became a decorated combat veteran of World War II, flying in the Pacific Theatre with the United States Army Air Forces as a B-29 bombardier. Holt was wounded over Tokyo on the last day of World War II and was awarded the Purple Heart.
He returned to films after the war, appearing as Virgil Earp to Henry Fonda's Wyatt Earp in John Ford's Western My Darling Clementine. Holt was next cast in the role that he is probably most remembered for, in a film in which his father also appeared in a small part, portraying Bob Curtin to Humphrey Bogart's Fred C. Dobbs in John Huston's The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, made in 1946 and released in 1948.
After the war, Holt continued his western career at RKO, and his films from this period rank at the top of the B western genre. Richard "Chito" Martin was Holt's saddle pal during the entire group.
He made two dozen more Western films until 1952, when the genre's popularity waned. He was then absent from the screen for five years until he starred in a less-than-successful horror film, The Monster That Challenged the World, in 1957. He then appeared in only two more motion pictures over the next fourteen years.
1. Fargo Kid (1940) - Tim Holt
2. Laddie (1940) - Tim Holt
This is the third screen adaptation of Gene Stratton-Porter's sentimental novel of postcolonial farm life. Laddie Stanton (Tim Holt), the proud son of an honest farmer, falls in love with Pamela Pryor, the daughter of the Englishman who has purchased the adjoining estate. Pamela's father, a haughty and morose man who is obsessed by the dishonorable discharge his son Robert received from the British army, disapproves of the match, forbidding any marriage between his daughter and a "field hand." To placate her father, Pamela begs Laddie to consider practicing a profession other than farming, thus insulting both Laddie and his family.
1. Under The Tonto Rim (1947) - Tim Holt - When the Tonto Rim gang attack Brad Canfield’s (Tim Holt) stagecoach, they take the strongbox and kill one of his workers. Learning the gang member Patton is in jail, Brad gets himself thrown in also. Chito helps break him out and he takes Patton with him. Patton leads him to the Tonto Rim hideout, but needing to get to the Sheriff, Brad finds himself a prisoner.
2. Zane Grey’s Wild Horse Mesa (1947) - Tim Holt - Dave Jordan (Tim Holt) and Chito (Richard Martin) are working for Pop Melhern (Jason Robarts) who is looking for wild horses. Olmstead (Harry Woods) has his men looking for then also. When Dave finds them first, Olmstead buys them from Melburn and then kills him. A clue leads Dave to Olmstead's where he breaks in and finds the murder weapon. When he takes his evidence to the Marshal he learns Olmstead has been murdered and he is the one under arrest.
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