|William "Billy" Benedict|
Billy Benedict in Sherlock Holmes in New York (1976)
|Date of birth:||16 April 1917|
|Born in:||New London, Iowa, U.S.|
|Died:||25 November 1999|
|Died in:||Los Angeles, CA, U.S.|
|Appeared on/in:||I Dream of Jeannie|
|Cleaning Man "My Master, the Magician" in Season 1|
William "Billy" Benedict (16 April 1917 - 25 November 1999) appeared as a Cleaning Man in the Season 1 episode of I Dream of Jeannie titled "My Master, the Magician". A venerable TV and film and former teen child actor, Billy is perhaps best known for playing "Whitey" in Monogram Pictures' The Bowery Boys series.
Life and career
Born in Haskell, Oklahoma, he took part in school theatricals, and on leaving school he made his way to Hollywood. His first film was $10 Raise (1935) starring Edward Everett Horton, which launched Benedict on a busy career. The blond-haired Benedict almost always played juvenile roles, such as newsboys, messengers, office boys, and farmhands.
In 1939, when Universal Pictures began its Little Tough Guys series to compete with the popular Dead End Kids features, Billy Benedict was recruited into the cast. These films led him into the similar East Side Kids movies (usually playing a member of the East Side gang, but occasionally in villainous roles). The East Side Kids became The Bowery Boys in 1946, and Benedict stayed with the series (as "Whitey") through the end of 1951.
Other films included Way Down East (1935), Libeled Lady (1936), Theodora Goes Wild (1936), My Little Chickadee (1940) starring W. C. Fields and Mae West, The Ox-Bow Incident (1943, with Harry Morgan and henry Fonda), Ed Wood's Bride of the Monster (1955), The Hallelujah Trail (1965), Big Daddy (1969), The Sting (1973), Homebodies (1974), Farewell, My Lovely (1975), Won Ton Ton, the Dog Who Saved Hollywood (1976), Sherlock Holmes in New York (1976) and Born Again (1978). Benedict never shook his juvenile image completely, and continued to play messengers and news vendors well into his sixties. He also worked often in television commercials.