Antonio “Tony” Moreno was a notable actor and film director of the silent film era and through the 1950s.
Born Antonio Garrido Monteagudo in Madrid, Spain, he emigrated to the United States at the age of fourteen and settled in Massachusetts, where he completed his education. After attending the Williston Seminary in Northampton, Massachusetts, he became a stage actor in regional theater productions. In 1912, he moved to Hollywood, California and he was signed to Vitagraph Studios and began his career in bit parts and as a movie extra.
In 1914, Moreno began co-starring in a series of highly successful serials opposite the enormously publicly popular silent film actress Pearl White. These appearances helped to increase Moreno’s popularity with the nation’s nascent film-goers. By 1915, Antonio Moreno was a highly regarded matinee idol and appearing opposite such successful actors as Tyrone Power, Sr., Gloria Swanson, Blanche Sweet, Pola Negri and Dorothy Gish. Moreno was often typecast in his earliest films as the “Latin Lover”, as were other actors of the era with Latin roots, such as Ramón Novarro and Rudolph Valentino.
By the early 1920s, Antonio Moreno joined film mogul Jesse Lasky’s Famous Players and became one of the company’s most highly paid performers. In 1926 Moreno starred opposite Swedish acting legend Greta Garbo in The Temptress and the following year followed up with a starring role in the enormous box-office hit Clara Bow vehicle It.