Fred Gwynne

Fred Gwynne as Herman Munster

Fred Gwynne was not only an actor but an author and artist. He wrote numerous books and appeared in numerous films, but to this day, he will be remembered as Herman Munster. Since The Munsters was licensed by Universal, the make-up artist could easily use the Frankenstein look.

Before Fred was in the Munsters, he was in Car 54, Where Are You? One day during the run of that show, he got devastating news. His son had drowned in the family pool. He was married to Foxy Gwynne at the time, but did divorce. Before his passing, he was married to Deb Gwynne. Fred and Beverly Owen (Marilyn #1) remained very good friends, and Beverly still goes to see Fred’s family.

On the set of the Munsters, he would sweat constantly with his costume. He also suffered a lot of back pain. Since he couldn’t drink vodka on the set he settled for lemonade. Beverly Owen remembers it to be extremely difficult for Fred. Also the make-up procedure took 3 hours every day! On a side note, the “head-piece” or flat part of Herman’s head was made anew everyday. Unless the new one worked fine, then Fred’s make-up man would use the one from the previous time.

After the Munsters, Fred did all sorts of different things, ranging from writing and illustrating books, to appearing in plays. Unfortunately he was typecast as a monster. In 1981 he did the tv-movie Munsters’ Revenge. Through out the 80’s and early 90’s Fred did commercial voice-overs, and continued to do movies like Pet Cemetary, and My Cousin Vinny.

Fred Gwynne passed away on July 2, 1993.