At the age of twelve, his agent gave him the name .. Mickey Rooney

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14.Babes on Broadway

Judy Garland, Mickey Rooney

Released: 1941

Directed by: Vincente Minnelli, Busby Berkeley

Babes on Broadway is a 1941 musical film starring Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland and directed by Busby Berkeley, with Vincente Minnelli directing Garland’s big solo numbers. The..

13.Strike Up the Band

Judy Garland, Mickey Rooney

Released: 1940

Directed by: Busby Berkeley

Strike Up the Band is a 1940 American black and white musical film. It is directed by Busby Berkeley and stars Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland. A very famous, memorable quote from the..

12.The Courtship of Andy Hardy

Mickey Rooney, Donna Reed

Released: 1942

Directed by: George B. Seitz

The Courtship of Andy Hardy is a 1942 film, part of the Andy Hardy series. It gave an early role to Donna Reed although Mickey Rooney had lobbied for then-wife Ava Gardner to have her part.

11.Life Begins for Andy Hardy

Judy Garland, Mickey Rooney

Released: 1941

Directed by: George B. Seitz

Life Begins for Andy Hardy is the 11th installment of the popular Andy Hardy movies. Directed by George B. Seitz, Life Begins for Andy Hardy was also the last Andy Hardy movie to feature

10.Andy Hardy Meets Debutante

Judy Garland, Mickey Rooney

Released: 1940

Directed by: George B. Seitz

Andy Hardy Meets Debutante is a 1940 American family comedy film directed by George B. Seitz. The film stars Lewis Stone, Mickey Rooney, Cecilia Parker, Fay Holden and Judy Garland. It..

9.Girl Crazy

Judy Garland, Mickey Rooney

Released: 1943

Directed by: Norman Taurog, Busby Berkeley, William A. Seiter

Girl Crazy is a 1943 musical film produced by Metro Goldwyn Mayer. Based on the stage musical of the same name, Girl Crazy stars Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland in their ninth of..

8.National Velvet

Elizabeth Taylor, Mickey Rooney

Released: 1944

Directed by: Clarence Brown

National Velvet is a 1944 Technicolor sports film based on the novel by Enid Bagnold, published in 1935. It stars Mickey Rooney, Donald Crisp and a young Elizabeth Taylor. In 2003, National..

7.Judge Hardy and Son

Mickey Rooney, Ann Rutherford

Released: 1939

Directed by: George B. Seitz

Judge Hardy and Son is a 1939 film directed by George B. Seitz..

6.Words and Music

Judy Garland, Mickey Rooney

Released: 1948

Directed by: Norman Taurog

Words and Music is a 1948 film loosely based on the creative partnership of the composer Richard Rodgers and lyricist Lorenz Hart. The film stars Mickey Rooney as Hart and Tom Drake..

5.Captains Courageous

Mickey Rooney, Spencer Tracy

Released: 1937

Directed by: Victor Fleming

Captains Courageous is a 1937 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer adventure film. Based on the novel by Rudyard Kipling, it had its world premiere at the Carthay Circle Theatre in Los Angeles. The..

4.Young Tom Edison

Mickey Rooney, Spencer Tracy

Released: 1940

Directed by: Norman Taurog

Young Tom Edison is a 1940 biographical film about the early life of inventor Thomas Edison, with Mickey Rooney in the title role. The movie follows the imaginative boy Tom as he..

3.Requiem for a Heavyweight

Mickey Rooney, Jack Dempsey

Released: 1962

Directed by: Ralph Nelson

Requiem for a Heavyweight was a teleplay written by Rod Serling and produced for the live television show Playhouse 90 on 11 October 1956. Six years later, it was adapted as a 1962..

2.Night at the Museum

Robin Williams, Ben Stiller

Released: 2006

Directed by: Shawn Levy

Night at the Museum is a 2006 American fantasy adventure-comedy film based on the 1993 children’s book of the same name by Milan Trenc. It follows a divorced father trying to settle

Robin Williams, Ben Stiller

Released: 2006

Directed by: Shawn Levy

Night at the Museum is a 2006 American fantasy adventure-comedy film based on the 1993 children’s book of the same name by Milan Trenc. It follows a divorced father trying to settle..

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1.Love Laughs at Andy Hardy

Mickey Rooney, Dorothy Ford

Released: 1946

Directed by: Willis Goldbeck

Love Laughs at Andy Hardy is a 1946 American film released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, directed by Willis Goldbeck and starring Mickey Rooney and Lewis Stone. The film is also known under.
Mickey Rooney is the second longest serving actor in the history of cinema and is also among the most prolific ones. His tryst with acting started when he was just seventeen months old and appeared on stage with his parents. Encouraged by his mother, he managed to bag his first movie role at the age of six and started featuring regularly in films. He bagged a major contract with MGM in his early teens and soon achieved stardom with comic roles in numerous movies and musicals, becoming the undisputed box-office king. His acting career was interrupted by a stint in the war, where too he showed his comic abilities off the camera and entertained the troops. But his magic somehow disappeared after the war and his films did not reach the heights of his earlier ones. But he did not relent and took his talent to TV and stage, attaining a modicum of success there. In spite of not being the same force as he once was, he carried on acting with the same zeal and energy throughout his life and intermittently produced great performances, like in the film ‘The Black Stallion’. His personal life wasn’t short of action either and he married eight times. His longevity and endurance certainly suggests that Mickey Rooney was born to act and entertain.
His first role was in the silent short film ‘Not to Be Trusted’ in 1926 where he played an adult midget. He then featured in a series of short films as ‘Mickey McGuire’.
At the age of twelve, his agent gave him the name ‘Mickey Rooney’. In 1934, Mickey was discovered by MGM producer David O. Selznick and was subsequently signed for the film ‘Manhattan Melodrama’. The film’s success led to a long-term contract and his admission in the MGM-owned ‘School for Professional Children’.
In 1937, he played the character of Andy Hardy as a supporting role in the film ‘A Family Affair’, which fetched him considerable fame. The unexpected success led to thirteen more Andy Hardy movies in the next decade. Rooney’s other notable films of this period were ‘Hoosier Schoolboy’, ‘Boys Town’ and ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’.
He starred in the successful musical ‘Babes in Arms’ with Judy Garland which led to several other musicals featuring the pair, including ‘Girl Crazy’ and ‘National Velvet’.
Rooney joined the army in 1944 and spent over twenty-one months there till the World War II ended. During this time, he entertained the troops and also featured on the ‘American Forces Network’ radio.
Post the war, Rooney lost his mojo at the box-office and starred in forgettable films like ‘Summer Holiday’, ‘Killer McCoy’ and ‘The Big Wheel’.
He began doing roles in TV shows and his first show was ‘The Mickey Rooney Show: Hey, Mulligan’, which was first aired in 1954. He also performed at nightclubs and kept doing smaller parts in films.
His notable movies of the 1960s include ‘Requiem for a Heavyweight, It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World’. In 1964, he started acting in another sitcom, ‘Mickey’ which also featured his son Tim Rooney. The series ended due to the suicide of a cast member, ‘Sammee Tong’.
Mickey had to wait a while for his next major success, which came in 1979 in Francis Ford Coppola’s film ‘The Black Stallion’. The same year, he acted in the successful play ‘Sugar Babies’ with Ann Miller. He followed it up by an intense portrayal of a mentally challenged man in the TV movie ‘Bill’ and its sequel ‘Bill: On His Own’.
In the 1990s, he got a starring role in the TV series ‘The Adventures of the Black Stallion’ in which he played the same character he had played in the film ‘The Black Stallion’ earlier. The series ran for three years and achieved worldwide popularity. He also acted in a Broadway play titled ‘Will Rogers Follies’.
Rooney continued performing even in his 90s, appearing most recently in the films ‘Night at the Museum’ and ‘The Muppets’. He also featured in a British pantomime, ‘Cinderella’ in 2007, where he played Baron Hardup.
Rooney’s portrayal of the iconic character of Andy Hardy started off in a supporting role in the film ‘A Family Affair’. However, the character’s subsequent popularity resulted in almost twenty more films featuring Andy Hardy. These films also helped to make Rooney the number one box-office star.
He formed a very successful and much-loved pairing with actress Judy Garland in a series of successful musicals, such as ‘Babes in Arms’, ‘Strike up the Band’, ‘Babes on Broadway’ and ‘Girl Crazy’, which cemented his status as a top star at the time.
His portrayal of Henry Dailey, a retired horse jockey in the acclaimed film ‘The Black Stallion’ garnered much appreciation. The film was a success at the box office too, collecting over 37 million compared to its paltry budget of 2 million.
Personal Life & Legacy
Rooney developed a very close friendship with Judy Garland, his co-star for many musicals and some films.
He jumped from one marriage to another with alarming frequency. In the 1940s itself, he married three women, beauty queen Ava Gardner, Betty Jane Rase, with whom he had two children Mickey and Tim. He also married Martha Vickers, with whom he had a son, Theodore.
In the 1950s too, he married twice, first marrying Elaine Devry and then Barbara Ann Thomason, with whom he had four children, Kelly, Kerry, Michael and Kimmy.
In the 1960s, he married Marge Lane and Carolyn Hockett, with whom he fathered a daughter Jonelle.
He married Jan Chamberlain in 1978, which has been his longest lasting marriage and the couple got separated after 35 years.
He was vocal about elder abuse and testified in court against his own Stepson Chris Aber in 2011.
He died in his sleep on April 6, 2014, at the age of 93.
Birthday: September 23, 1920 – April 6 .2014.

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