Catholics in the Movies: Mike Mazurki (1907-1990)

Mike Mazurki was what is known as a “Brothers’ Boy.” Born Mikhail Mazurkiewicz in Austria-Hungary, he emigrated to the United States on the eve of the First World War. Settling in upstate New York, he attended the La Salle Institute in Troy, New York, run by the De La Salle Christian Brothers. After graduating from another Lasallian institution, Manhattan College, in 1930, he moved on to professional sports: wrestling, basketball and football. At 6’5”, he was an imposing presence, making his film debut in Josef von Sternberg’s The Shanghai Gesture  in 1941. He would appear in over a hundred movies altogether, as well as numerous television shows. He almost invariably played thugs, gansgsters, tough guys or strongmen. Perhaps his most memorable role was as Moose Malloy in the 1944 film noir classic Murder, My Sweet 

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