Richard Carlson, 65, an actor on the stage, screen and television who later became a successful director, screenwriter, and fiction writer, died Friday in Los Angeles.

A family spokesman said he had suffered a cerebral hemorrhage on Nov. 15 and had never regained consciousness.

Mr. Carlson was best known for his role in the long-running television series, "I Led Three Lives," which ran during the early 1950s.

He played the role of Herbert Philbrick, an advertising man who worked undercover for the Federal Bureau of Investigation as a Communist. There were 117 TV cpisodes and they made the actor a small fortune.

Born in Albert Lea. Minn., Mr. Carlsonattended the University of Minnestoa., where he majored in drama, was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and earned a master's degree cum laude

After briefly teaching English there, he joined the famous Pasadena Playhouse in California, where he acted, directed and wrote plays.

He made his acting debut on Broadway in "Three Men on A Horse" in 1935, and later appeared with Ethel Barrymore in "Ghost of Yankee Doodle" and "Whiteoaks."

Mr. Carlson's first film was "Young in Heart" in 1938. Other films included "Winter Carnival," "No, No, Nanette," "Back Street," "White Cargo." "The Little Foxes," "Man from Down Under," "Blue Veil," "It Came from Outer Space" and "Ridgers to the Starts."

He continued to appear for a number of years on live and tape television dramas. He also appeared in road shows of such plays as "Mr. Roberts."

He is survived by his wife, Mona, of the home in Sherman Oaks, and two sons, Christopher, of Pacific Palisades, Calif., and Henry, of San Francisco.