Richard Carlson (April 29, 1912- November 21, 1977) was born in Albert Lea, Minnesota. In the 1930s Carlson appeared on the Broadway stage after studying and teaching drama in Minnesota. His first film role was in 1938 (David O. Selznick's The Young in Heart). He worked as a freelance actor, appearing in many different film studio works, beginning in 1939 when he moved to California.
Carlson eventually served in World War II, interrupting his acting career. After returning he found it difficult to find the quality of work he did previously. In 1948, he appeared in two low budget films noir Behind Locked Doors and The Amazing Mr. X. But his post-war comeback didnâ€™t really start until the 1950s. Before the war, he appeared mostly in comedies and dramas. In the 1950s he found success in a number of horror and science fiction films, including three 3-D films: The Maze (1953) and the classics It Came from Outer Space (1953) and The Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954).
The early fifties was a busy time for Carlson. He also was the star of the television series I Led Three Lives from 1953-1956. Mystery Science Theater 3000 fans remember Carlson in the 1960 horror film Tormented. His last film was the Elvis Presley/Mary Tyler Moore film, Change of Habit (1969).
For his contribution to the television industry, Richard Carlson has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6333 Hollywood Blvd.
Carlson died of a cerebral hemorrhage in 1977.