Vale: Mickey Rooney

2014-04-07_1408Legendary entertainer Mickey Rooney, best known for his MGM musicals, has died, aged 93.

Variety reports the veteran actor died on Sunday.

Rooney had a prolific career spanning eight decades in film, television and stage.

He was nominated for four Academy Awards and received two special Oscars, the Juvenile Award in 1939 (shared with Deanna Durbin) and one in 1983 for his body of work.

His many film credits included “My Pal the King,” “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” “Manhattan Melodram,” “Ah Wilderness”, “Little Lord Fauntleroy,” “Captains Courageous”, “Boy’s Town,” “A Family Affair,” “Babes in Arms,” “Strike Up the Band,” “Babes on Broadway,” “Girl Crazy,” “The Human Comedy”, “National Velvet,” “Breakfast at Tiffany’s,” “Requiem for a Heavyweight”, “It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World”, “The Black Stallion,” “Night at the Museum” and “The Muppets”.

Via his “Andy Hardy” series of films, Rooney came to embody the virtues of small-town American boyhood. Those films and the musicals in which he co-starred with Judy Garland made him America’s biggest box office attraction for three years running.

He also appeared on series and TV and in made for television movies, one of which, Bill, won him an Emmy. He was nominated three other times. He also appeared in the mid-’50s series The Mickey Rooney Show: Hey, Mulligan and Mickey, which ran for a few months in 1964-65. He did the voices for Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town, The Year Without a Santa Claus, Rudolph and Frosty’s Christmas in July and A Miser Brothers’ Christmas and also played St. Nick in a 1982 episode of The Love Boat.

He made guest appearances on The Golden Girls, Murder, She Wrote, ER and The New Adventures of the Black Stallion, based on the film, for 57 episodes from 1990-93.

From 1944-46, Rooney served in the U.S. Army in the Jeep Theater, travelling 150,000 miles entertaining the troops and acting as a radio personality on the American Forces Network. But after the war, Rooney’s attempt to make the transition from overaged teenager to full-fledged adult struggled.

He was married eight times and filed for bankruptcy in 1962, having gone through the $12 million he had earned.

Rooney also made popular stage appearances in “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum” and on Broadway in “The Will Rogers Follies” and the musical “Sugar Babies.”


  1. Grew up on a lot of Mickey Rooney movies, being from a country town the local cinema use to run an afternoon of Movies for the kids. Parents use to drop us off and the doors to the Cinema locked and we’d see all this kid friendly movies, loved all of the ones Rooney was in.

    I also love how Mickey Rooney came through his bad times of being bitter towards Hollywood to the extent of sending himself up in the Radioactive Man episode of The Simpsons (Season 7 Episode 2).

    It shows the real measure of a person to be able to admit their faults, he was and is a legend of the industry.

  2. OntheInside

    He also appeared on ‘The Eric Banner Show’ as a guest and was very easy to work with. What ever lame gags we had, he would gladly perform them for the show.

  3. A great article on his life by the way, David. Very disappointed to see two other well known celeb sites making glaring errors about his life. (He was not in the Hardy Boys!)
    He deserved somebody to do their research. Great job.

  4. He was also in “Babe 2” if I remember correctly.

    While Sugar Babies played Her Majesty’s Theatre in Sydney it wasn’t with Rooney. Local production starred Eddie Bracken, Garry McDonald (as “Mo” in the second act) and the first big role for Rhonda Burchmore.

    Rooney and Burchmore appeared together in the London production of Sugar Babies.

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