Brian Donlevy (1901-1972) was an underrated film actor with surprising range and a little-heralded gift for comedy. Often typecast as a villain, he played the definitive bad guy in such films as Destry Rides Again, Union Pacific and Beau Geste (all in 1939). He showed his versatility in the title role of Preston Sturges' political satire The Great McGinty (1940) and impressed both New York critics and the Soviet government as the cooly authoritative Major Caton in Wake Island (1942). Donlevy was fondly remembered as globe-trotting U.S. Special Agent Steve Mitchell in the television series Dangerous Assignment (1952) and as Professor Quatermass in two acclaimed science fiction films. This first ever biography of Donlevy covers his colorful early life as a boy soldier, his years playing comedy roles on Broadway and his long career in Hollywood.