October 6, 1897
New York City, New York, United States
January 24, 1972
Hollywood, California, United States
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Jerome Cowan is most known for his supporting roles in "Miracle on 34th Street" and "The Maltese Falcon." "Miracle on 34th Street," the classic Christmas comedy, which featured Natalie Wood in her first major role, had Cowan playing the district attorney trying to prove that a department store Santa Claus on trial is a deranged lunatic thinking he's the real thing. In "The Maltese Falcon," Cowan plays a detective and right-hand assistant to Sam Spade, played by Humphrey Bogart; the film was declared by the Panorama du Film Noir Américain to be the very first in the genre of film noir, and by many critics as one of the greatest films of all time. The same year, Cowan, cast in a more minor role, teamed up with Bogart once again in "High Sierra," another in the film noir genre and directed by Raoul Walsh. The plot centers on Bogart's ex-con and gangster character and the heist of a California resort. In the 1960s, and to a lesser degree in the 1950s as well, Cowan found work primarily on television. He was a regular cast member on "The Tab Hunter Show," starring teen heartthrob Tab Hunter as a womanizing but charming cartoonist, with Cowan playing the owner of the comic company and Hunter's boss.