Stanley Ridges was a British-born actor who made his mark in films by playing a wide assortment of character parts. Born July 17, 1890 or 1891 in Southampton, Hampshire, England, Stanley Ridges would become a protégé of Beatrice Lillie, a star of musical stage comedies, and spent a great many years learning and honing his craft on the stage. He was seldom was cast in roles where he could really make an impression.
Eventually making his way to America, Ridges started out as a song-and-dance man on Broadway, but later turned to dramatic roles onstage, appearing in such plays as Maxwell Anderson's Mary of Scotland and Valley Forge, becoming a romantic leading man.
Ridges' silent film debut was in 1923's Success. With his excellent diction and rich speaking voice, he easily made the transition into sound films, with his career taking off at age 43, in Crime Without Passion, opposite Claude Rains. Ridges found himself cast in character roles, as his graying hair put his romantic leading man days at an end. His most famous roles probably were two different professors, one of them the kindly Professor Kingsley in the thriller Black Friday.