Memory Lane: Nick Cravat

Nick Cravat - Rotten Tomatoes

Nick Cravat with Burt Lancaster in The Crimson Pirate

If you’re an old movie buff like I am, you may have wondered about this odd little guy who did gravity-defying stunts in nine films with Burt Lancaster. The two were lifelong friends and had been circus acrobats together, early in their careers.

Nick Cravat, born Nicholas Cuccia, almost never spoke in his movies because he thought his thick Brooklyn accent would be a drawback. But boy, could he mime! And Lancaster didn’t seem to mind his old friend stealing scene after scene. And the stunts! They have to be seen to be believed.

And hey! Y’know that famous Twilight Zone episode from 1963, in which airline passenger William Shatner gets freaked out when he sees a gremlin making mischief on the airplane’s wing? That was Nick Cravat! I never knew that until today.

He was one of a kind; and if you can find The Crimson Pirate on your computer anywhere, watch it. Enjoyment guaranteed! Thanks to Nick Cravat.

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