Dean Jagger

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Dean Jagger, Mormon film actor

Dean Jagger, born Ira Dean Jagger, was a famous American film star. He was born on November 7, 1903, in Columbus Grove, Ohio. He studied at Chicago's Lyceum Art Conservatory, after studying at Wabash College and teaching for a time. He also performed in stock, vaudeville and radio, before landing a movie role. His first film was Woman from Hell (1929) with Mary Astor. While never on Hollywood's short list of celebrities, Jagger was a character actor who made around 100 films, working until shortly before his death in 1991.

Jagger's first major role was as the prophet Brigham Young in the film Brigham Young, Frontiersman, released in 1940. Then prophet Heber J. Grant praised his work, and this led Jagger to study the LDS Church. [1] He had consulted President Grant and Church historians in preparation for his role.

Jagger received an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role in Twelve O'Clock High (1949). He also appeared in the biblical epic The Robe (1953) as the weaver Justus of Cana. He was the retired general honored by Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye in the musical White Christmas (1954) and a helpless sheriff in Bad Day at Black Rock (1955). [2] Jagger was also in King Creole and Elmer Gantry, The Kremlin Letter, and Vanishing Point.

In 1964 and 1965 Jagger won Emmy nominations for his role in TV's Mr. Novak. He was a guest star on many other TV shows, including Kung Fu. Jagger has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, which he received in 1960.

Jagger joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, sometimes casually called the Mormon Church, in 1972, having studied its doctrines since his role as Brigham Young in 1940. Jagger passed away on February 5, 1991, in Santa Monica, California, of heart disease. He donated his awards, theatrical files, correspondence and five volumes of scrapbooks to the Harold B. Lee Library at Brigham Young University. [3]