Richard Whorf

Richard Whorf
Born (1906-06-04)June 4, 1906
Winthrop, Massachusetts, U.S.
Died December 14, 1966(1966-12-14) (aged 60)
Resting place Forest Lawn Memorial Park (Hollywood Hills)
Occupation Film and television actor, director, and author

Richard Whorf (June 4, 1906 – December 14, 1966) was an American actor, author, director, and designer.


Richard Whorf was born in Winthrop, Massachusetts, to Harry and Sarah (née Lee) Whorf. His older brother was linguist Benjamin Lee Whorf.[1] Whorf began his acting career on the Boston stage as a teenager then moved to Broadway at age 21. He had a role in a production of Taming of the Shrew at the Globe Theatre in New York City. He moved to Hollywood and became a contract player in films of the 1930s and 1940s, before becoming a director in 1944.

Whorf played a famous painter who had resorted to drinking in the 1960 episode "The Illustrator" of ABC's The Rifleman, starring Chuck Connors and Johnny Crawford. He directed a number of television programs in the 1950s and 1960s, the best known being the CBS hit comedy The Beverly Hillbillies, starring Buddy Ebsen and the entire second season of My Three Sons. He directed the short-lived 1959 syndicated adventure series, Border Patrol, and the 1964-1965 ABC sitcom, Mickey, starring Mickey Rooney. In the summer of 1960, he guest starred in one episode and directed other segments of the short-lived David McLean western series, Tate.

Whorf directed the unsuccessful 1961 stage comedy Julia, Jake and Uncle Joe.[2]

Whorf's hobby was painting; he sold his first painting at the age of 15 for $100. Many of his small-town landscape paintings reflected his American worldview and seemed to be inspired by painters like Grant Wood and Norman Rockwell.

He was buried at Forest Lawn Memorial Park, in Hollywood Hills, Los Angeles.[3]

Partial filmography

As director

As actor

As producer


  1. Carrol, John B. (1956) "Introduction" in "Language, Thought and Reality: Selected Writings of Benjamin Lee Whorf". MIT Press. pp. 2-3
  2. Internet Broadway Database listing
  3. Richard Whorf at Find a Grave
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