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Monday, April 7, 2014

It's a Sad, Sad, Sad, Sad World -- Mickey Rooney Passes Away at 93

While many took him for granted over the years, or underappreciated his talents, Mickey Rooney continued to be one of the world's greatest and most versatile actors for pretty much his entire life. 

Born Ninian Joseph Yule Jr. in Brooklyn, New York in 1920, he would first appear on the vaudeville stage at age 17 months before going on to star in his own comedy short series as "Mickey McGuire" in 1927.  This led to a career in films that has rarely been matched for longevity and productivity.

Highlights include the "Andy Hardy" series, teen musicals with Judy Garland, BOYS TOWN with Spencer Tracy, playing a hardbitten killer in THE LAST MILE, a memorably autumnal role in THE BLACK STALLION, and a great team up with Buddy Hackett and a host of other great comedy stars in the perennial favorite, 1963's IT'S A MAD, MAD, MAD, MAD WORLD.

Also noteworthy is his appearance in surrealist filmmaker Fernando Arrabal's off-kilter children's film THE EMPEROR OF  PERU,  which we reviewed here.

Rooney had a sometimes volatile personal life which included eight marriages, the first to actress Ava Gardner.  He was said to be a difficult interview subject and notoriously crabby during DVD commentary tracks for his old movie and TV appearances. 

In recent years he has been living with his son and daughter-in-law Mark and Charlene Rooney, seemingly enjoying a full and happy life.  He passed away on April 6, 2014.

We've enjoyed his movies immensely over the years and loved just having him around.  Now we'll miss him, but we'll always have our memories of the Mick.

(Thanks to IMDb)

 2011 The Muppets
Smalltown Resident

 2006 Night at the Museum

 1998 Babe: Pig in the City
Fugly Floom

 1982 Odyssey of the Pacific (aka The Emperor of Peru)
The Railway Engineer

 1979 The Black Stallion
Henry Dailey

1977 Pete's Dragon

 1969 The Comic
Martin 'Cockeye' Van Buren

 1968 Skidoo
George 'Blue Chips' Packard

 1965 How to Stuff a Wild Bikini
Peachy Keane

 1963 It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World
Ding Bell

 1962 Requiem for a Heavyweight

 1961 Everything's Ducky
Kermit 'Beetle' McKay

1961 Breakfast at Tiffany's
Mr. Yunioshi

 1959 The Last Mile
'Killer' Mears

 1958 Andy Hardy Comes Home
Andrew 'Andy' Hardy

 1957 Baby Face Nelson
Lester M. 'Baby Face Nelson' Gillis

 1956 Francis in the Haunted House
David Prescott

 1954 The Atomic Kid
Barnaby 'Blix' Waterberry

 1944 National Velvet
Mi Taylor

 1941 Babes on Broadway
Tommy Williams

 1940 Young Tom Edison
Thomas Alva 'Tom' Edison

 1939 Babes in Arms
Mickey Moran

 1939 The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
Huckleberry Finn

 1938 Boys Town
Whitey Marsh

 1938 Love Finds Andy Hardy
Andrew Hardy

 1937 Captains Courageous

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