Van Johnson (August 25, 1916 – December 12, 2008) was an American film and television actor and dancer who was a major star at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer studios during and after World War II.
Johnson was the embodiment of the "boy-next-door wholesomeness (that) made him a popular Hollywood star in the '40s and '50s," playing "the red-haired, freckle-faced soldier, sailor or bomber pilot who used to live down the street" in MGM movies during the war years with such films as "Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo", "A Guy Named Joe" and "The Caine Mutiny". Johnson made occasional World War II movies through the end of the 1960s, and he played a military officer in one of his final feature films, in 1992. At the time of his death in December 2008, he was one of the last surviving matinee idols of Hollywood's "golden age."
AS SEEN IN:
'I Love Lucy'
"The Dancing Star"
Lucy got Van Johnson to dance with her at the nightclub so that she could impress Caroline Appleby.
'The Jack Benny Show'
"Jack's Life Story"
Van Johnson was hired to play Jack Benny in the movie version of his life. [This fake movie exists in Toobworld.]
When Delia Coleridge opened her Crystal Palace restaurant, Van Johnson was among the luminaries to attend the grand opening.