Family & Companions
Karl Lukas started his career working long days to fulfill his dream of becoming an actor. He would man the change booth of the subway station overnight, rush home briefly to see his wife, head out to tape a television program, and rush from there to perform on stage somewhere. He claimed that in the late 1950s he slept only three to four hours a night. His best known role was on the stage, performing alongside Henry Fonda in the Broadway production of "Mister Roberts," based on Thomas Heggen's novel of the same name, that recounted World War II stories. He began to appear on television in the early 1950s. One of his early characters was a recurring role as Private Stash Kadowski on the hit war comedy series "The Phil Silvers Show." He also appeared on programs like the anthology series "Alfred Hitchcock Presents," the comedy "The Beverly Hillbillies," and the private investigator drama "The Rockford Files," among many others. His film debut was a small role in the 1953 comedy "The Long, Long Trailer," which starred Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz. Some other films he was in include the action picture "Tora! Tora! Tora!" and the Disney comedies "Herbie Rides Again" and "The Shaggy D.A.." His final role came in 1991, when he was 71 years old, playing a bartender in the made-for-TV dramatic movie "Don't Touch My Daughter." Lukas appeared in over 100 roles in a career that spanned four decades.