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Ronnie Schell
Ronnie Schell 2011
Ronnie Schell in recent photo.
Vital information
Birthname: Ronald Ralph Schell
Born: (1931-12-23) December 23, 1931 (age 88)
Birthplace: Richmond, California, U.S.
Occupation/
Career:
Actor, Comedian, Voice actor
Years active: 1965—present
Character information
Appeared on: The Wayans Bros.
Episodes appeared in: "Pop's Campaign"
Character played: as Councilman Ted McKay
Wayans Bros Long script logo-1062px

Ronald Ralph "Ronnie" Schell (born December 23, 1931) appeared on The Wayans Bros. as Councilman Ted McKay in the episode Pop's Campaign. actor, stand-up comedian and cartoon voice actor (notably Peter Puck). Early in his career he appeared as himself as a contestant on You Bet Your Life opposite Groucho Marx, demonstrating a comic barrage of jive talk.[1] Schell is probably best known in his 1960s television role as Duke Slater in Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.

Life and careerEdit

Born in Richmond, California, Ronnie's first choice of careers was to play professional baseball. He got as far as the semi-pro league level before enlisting in the Air Force, where he performed in variety shows as both an emcee and comedian and also did record pantomimes. Schell graduated from Richmond Union High School in 1949 then studied at San Francisco State University and formed a nightclub comedy duo which took off. He turned solo within a year and progressed to Las Vegas work as an opening act.

In his role as Duke Slater on Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C., Schell's character was cast for three seasons as a Marine Private, and best friend of Gomer Pyle. Schell left for a season to star as a disc jockey in his own sitcom, Good Morning, World. He then returned to Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. as a Corporal for its fifth and final season. Schell played his Duke Slater character as street-wise, compared to Pyle's bucolic background as portrayed by Jim Nabors.

Schell also acted in a few Pacific Southwest Airlines Commercials such as "Smile Inspection" and "PSA Gives You A Lift Pageant". At the end of a Jerry Lewis PSA Jingle, a voice said "That was Jerry Lewis for PSA, and this is Ronnie Schell. What did I do wrong?"[2] He also did a commercial with Don Adams where he parodied Don's TV character Maxwell Smart as well as commercial spots for the California-based Shakey's Pizza fast-food restaurant chains in the late 1980's.

In addition to his appearance on The Wayans Bros., Ronnie's many television guest credits include appearances on such shows as The Andy Griffith Show, Step by Step, Coach, The Golden Girls, 227, Empty Nest, Trapper John, M.D., Too Close for Comfort, Alice, Mork & Mindy, The Dukes of Hazzard, Sanford and Son, Emergency!, and Happy Days. He currently apeears on the Disney Channel series Jessie, where he appeared as Ranger Bill in the 6th episode this season.

In 2007, Schell was part of a touring cabaret show titled, "5 Star Revue" with Gary Collins, Mary Ann Mobley, Ruta Lee and Steve Rossi. He also starred in the 2009 Off-Broadway production of "Don't Leave it All to Your Children!", a comedic and musical revue dedicated to those Baby Boomers everywhere who are about to enter into the golden age of Senior Citizenship.

ReferencesEdit

  1. Groucho Marx - You Bet Your Life (April 21, 2014). You Bet Your Life #58-36 Creators of Honey West (Secret word 'Table', May 28, 1959). Retrieved on July 4, 2017.
  2. PSA History/Oldtimers Page psa-history.org

External linksEdit

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