Arthur Edmund Carewe

Arthur Edmund Carewe

Carewe publicity photo in Stars of the Photoplay (1922)
Born Hovsep Hovsepian
(1884-12-30)December 30, 1884
Trabzon, Ottoman Empire
Died April 22, 1937(1937-04-22) (aged 52)
Santa Monica, California, U.S.
Cause of death Suicide
Other names Arthur E. Carew
Arthur Edmund Carew
Arthur Carew
Arthur Carewe
Citizenship Ottoman
American (naturalized)
Education Cushing Academy
Alma mater American Academy of Dramatic Arts
Occupation Actor
Years active 19191936
Spouse(s) Irene Pavlowska (m. 1915; div. 1921)

Arthur Edmund Carewe (December 30, 1884[1] – April 22, 1937) was an Armenian-American stage and film actor of the silent and early sound film era.

Early life

Born Hovsep Hovsepian in Trabzon (Trebizond), Ottoman Empire, Carewe was from a prosperous family in his native country. His father, Garo, was engaged in the banking business and carried some influence from his positions in the national legislature and board of education.[2] His father died in 1892, and the Hamidian massacres eventually forced the Hovsepian family to emigrate. Carewe emigrated to the United States on August 7, 1896, arriving in New York Harbor on the Augusta Victoria, having departed from Cherbourg.[3] He was accompanied by his elder brother, Ardasches. Another elder brother, Garo Armen, had preceded them, and their mother arrived the following year.

He attended Cushing Academy in Ashburnham, Massachusetts, after which he studied painting and sculpture. At the turn of the century, he and his elder brother Garo ran a rug and furnishings business in New York City. He decided upon a stage career and attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York City, graduating in March 1904 with the David Belasco Gold Medal for Dramatic Ability.


By 1910, he had assumed the stage name of "Arthur Carew" and earned attention in national newspapers for a suspected fake suicide attempt over the actress/dancer Nance Gwynne.[4] He relocated to Chicago sometime before 1915 and operated another furnishing goods business until he moved to Hollywood in 1919. His debut role was in the Constance Talmadge comedy Romance and Arabella. He became a naturalized citizen June 28, 1918.

During his time in the motion picture industry, Carewe became a well-respected character actor and would perform in several classic literary screen adaptations, including The Phantom of the Opera (1925) and Uncle Tom's Cabin (1927),

specializing as shady, neurotic, wild-eyed characters, which he seemed to revel in playing. He also continued to perform sporadically in regional theaters, essaying in 1921 the role of Prinzivalle in Monna Vanna by Maurice Maeterlinck.[5] In 1926, he wrote two screenplays for First National that were never produced. In 1928, he traveled to Europe, but a proposal to perform a self-penned screenplay for Universum Film AG was never realized.[6]

He was for a time considered for, and later turned down, the role of Count Dracula in 1931, which would eventually go to Bela Lugosi. Carewe appeared in fifty films over the course of his career, mostly during the silent film era.

Personal life

Carewe married the soprano Irene Pavlowska (née Irene Levi) on February 17, 1915 in Chicago.[7] They divorced in 1921.[8]

Later years and death

Shortly after the release of his final film, Charlie Chan's Secret, in 1936, Carewe suffered a stroke.[9] On April 22, 1937, he was found dead in his car in the parking lot of a Santa Monica beach motel of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.[10]


Year Title Role Notes
1919 Venus in the East Middy Knox
1919 Romance and Arabella Claude Estabrook Credited as Arthur Carewe
1919 Daughter of Mine Joseph Rayberg/Baron Landsandhome Credited as Arthur Carew
1919 The Rescuing Angel Patricia Reynolds
1919 Girls Wilbur Searles Credited as Arthur Carewe
Lost film
1919 The World and Its Woman Count Alix Voronassof Credited as Arthur Carewe
1919 Dangerous Waters Victor DeLara Credited as Arthur Carew
1919 Bonnie Bonnie Lassie Archibald Loveday Credited as Arthur Carewe
1920 Burning Daylight Arthur Howison Credited as Arthur E. Carew
1920 Rio Grande Don Jose Alvarado Credited as Arthur Carewe
1920 Children of Destiny Count Di Varesi Credited as Arthur E. Carew
1920 The Breath of the Gods Prince Hagane Credited as Arthur Carewe
Lost film
1920 The Palace of Darkened Windows The Rajah
1921 The Mad Marriage Christiansen Credited as Arthur Carewe
1921 The Easy Road Heminway Credited as Arthur Carewe
1921 Sham Bolton Credited as Arthur Carewe
1921 Bar Nothing Stinson Credited as Arthur Carewe
1921 Her Mad Bargain Grant Lewis
1922 The Prodigal Judge Col. Fentress Credited as Arthur Carew
1922 My Old Kentucky Home 'Con' Arnold Credited as Arthur Carewe
1922 His Wife's Husband John Brainerd Credited as Arthur Carewe
1922 The Ghost Breaker Duke d'Alba Lost film
1923 Refuge Prince Ferdinand
1923 Daddy Paul Savelli Lost film
1923 Trilby Svengali
1923 The Ten Commandments Israelite Slave Uncredited
1923 The Song of Love Ramlika
1924 Sandra Henri La Flamme
1924 The Price of a Party Kenneth Bellwood Credited as Arthur Carewe
1925 The Boomerang Poulet
1925 The Phantom of the Opera Ledoux
1925 A Lover's Oath Prince Yussuf
1925 The Only Thing Gigberto Alternative title: Four Flaming Days
1926 Torrent Salvatti Credited as Arthur Edmund Carew
1926 Volcano! Maurice Séquineau
1926 Diplomacy Count Orloff
1926 Count Orloff Captain Herault
1927 The Claw Major Anthony Kinsella
1927 The Cat and the Canary Harry Credited as Arthur Edmund Carew
1927 A Man's Past Lieutenant Destin
1927 Uncle Tom's Cabin George Harris Credited as Arthur Edmund Carew
1930 The Matrimonial Bed Dr. Fried (credits)/Dr. Beaudine (in film) Credited as Arthur Edmund Carew
1930 Sweet Kitty Bellairs Capt. Spicer
1931 Captain Applejack Ivan Borolsky, aka Jim Credited as Arthur Edmund Carew
1931 God's Gift to Women Dr. Louis Dumont
1931 The Gay Diplomat Suave Man
1932 Doctor X Dr. Rowitz
1933 Mystery of the Wax Museum Sparrow - Professor Darcy
1935 Thunder in the Night Professor Omega
1936 Charlie Chan's Secret Professor Bowen Credited as Arthur Edmund Carew


  1. Although this is the commonly accepted year, and some references cite 1894, his 1917 draft registration card and his 1915 marriage license give his birth year as 1881.
  2. Stone, Wilbur Fisk. History of Colorado: Volume II. Chicago: S.J. Clark, 1918.
  3. Avakian, Linda L. Armenian Immigrants: Boston 1891-1901, New York 1880-1897. Picton Press, 1996. (ISBN 0897252756)
  4. "Actress' Bid For Publicity Lands Actor In Jail", New York Times, February 7, 1910.; "Tries Again To See Miss Gwyn", Boston Daily Globe, February 7, 1910. pg. 7.
  5. "Both Busy On Stage," Los Angeles Times, March 9, 1921. p. III4; "'Monna Vanna' To Be Given For Mary Garden Today," Los Angeles Times, April 6, 1921. p. III4.
  6. "Arthur Carew With UFA", Los Angeles Times, March 23, 1928. p. A8
  7. Marriage License
  8. "Irene Pavlowska, Bride, Guarantees Alimony," Washington Post, December 30, 1928, p. M1, 10.
  9. Hanke, Ken (1990). Charlie Chan at the Movies: History, Filmography, and Criticism. McFarland. p. 64. ISBN 0-786-48661-9.
  10. "Suicide Victim Former Actor," Los Angeles Times, April 23, 1937. p. A2

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