1-50 of 1,292 names.

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1. Alfred Hitchcock Alfred Hitchcock Director, Psycho Alfred Joseph Hitchcock was born in Leytonstone, Essex, England. He was the son of Emma Jane (Whelan; 1863 - 1942) and East End greengrocer William Hitchcock (1862 - 1914). His parents were both of half English and half Irish ancestry. He had two older siblings, William Hitchcock (born 1890) and Eileen Hitchcock (born 1892)...
2. Fred Astaire Fred Astaire Soundtrack, Top Hat Fred Astaire was born in Omaha, Nebraska, to Johanna (Geilus) and Fritz Austerlitz, a brewer. Fred entered show business at age 5. He was successful both in vaudeville and on Broadway in partnership with his sister, Adele Astaire. After Adele retired to marry in 1932, Astaire headed to Hollywood. Signed to RKO...
3. Humphrey Bogart Humphrey Bogart Actor, Casablanca The son of a moderately wealthy Manhattan surgeon (who was secretly addicted to opium) and a famed magazine illustrator, Humphrey Bogart was educated at Trinity School, New York City, sent to Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts, in preparation for medical studies at Yale. He was expelled from Phillips and joined the U.S...
4. James Cagney James Cagney Actor, White Heat One of Hollywood's preeminent male stars of all time (eclipsed, perhaps, only by "King" Clark Gable and arguably by Gary Cooper or Spencer Tracy), and the cinema's quintessential "tough guy", James Cagney was also an accomplished--if rather stiff--hoofer and easily played light comedy. Ending three decades on the screen...
5. Gloria Swanson Gloria Swanson Actress, Sunset Blvd. Gloria Swanson was born Gloria May Josephine Svensson in Chicago, Illinois. She was destined to be perhaps one of the biggest stars of the silent movie era. Her personality and antics in private definitely made her a favorite with America's moviegoing public. Gloria certainly didn't intend on going into show business...
6. Charles Laughton Charles Laughton Actor, Spartacus Son of Robert Laughton and Elizabeth Conlon. Educated at Stonyhurst, Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (received gold medal). First appearance on stage, 1926. Formed own film company, Mayflower Pictures Corp., with Erich Pommer in 1937. Became American citizen 1950. A consummate artist, Laughton achieved great success on stage and film...
7. Neil Hamilton Neil Hamilton Actor, General Hospital Neil Hamilton's show business career began when he secured a job as a shirt model in magazine ads. He became interested in acting and joined several stock companies. He got his first film role in 1918, but received his big break from D.W. Griffith in The White Rose. After performing in several more Griffith films...
8. Charles Boyer Charles Boyer Actor, Gaslight Charles Boyer studied philosophy before he went to the theater where he gave his debut in 1920. Although he had at first no intentions to pursue a career at the movies (his first movie was L'homme du large by Marcel L'Herbier) he used his chance in Hollywood after several filming stations all over Europe...
9. Noel Coward Noel Coward Writer, Easy Virtue Noel Coward virtually invented the concept of Englishness for the 20th century. An astounding polymath - dramatist, actor, writer, composer, lyricist, painter, and wit -- he was defined by his Englishness as much as he defined it. He was indeed the first Brit pop star, the first ambassador of "cool Britannia." Even before his 1924 drugs-and-sex scandal of The Vortex...
10. Chief Dan George Chief Dan George Actor, The Outlaw Josey Wales Chief Dan George was born with the names Geswanouth Slahoot (which was anglicized as Dan Slaholt) to a tribal chief on Burrard Indian Reserve No. 3 in North Vancouver. His last name was changed to George when he entered a mission boarding school at the age of 5, where the use of his native language was discouraged, if not forbidden...
11. George Macready George Macready Actor, Paths of Glory George Macready--the name probably doesn't ring any bells for most but the voice would be unmistakable. He attended and graduated from Brown University and had a short stint as a New York newspaperman, but became interested in acting on the advice of colorful Polish émigré classical stage director Richard Boleslawski...
12. George Cukor George Cukor Director, My Fair Lady
13. P.L. Travers P.L. Travers Writer, Mary Poppins
14. John Qualen John Qualen Actor, Casablanca One of the best and most familiar character actors of the first four decades of sound films, although few who knew his face also knew his name. John Qualen was born in Canada to Norwegian parents. His father was a minister. The family moved to the United States and Qualen (whose real name was Kvalen) grew up in Elgin...
15. Dwight Frye Dwight Frye Actor, Dracula An extremely versatile character actor and originator of several memorable characterizations in the horror film genre, Dwight Frye had a notable theatrical career in the 1920s, moving from juvenile parts to leads before entering film. A favorite actor of Broadway theatrical producer-director Brock Pemberton...
16. Glenn Strange Glenn Strange Actor, Bud Abbott Lou Costello Meet Frankenstein At various times in his life a rancher, deputy sheriff and rodeo performer, this huge, towering (6' 5") beast of a man was born George Glenn Strange in Weed, New Mexico, on August 16, 1899, but grew up a real-life cowboy in Cross Cut, Texas. Of Irish and Cherokee Indian descent, he taught himself (by ear) the fiddle and guitar at a young age and started performing at local functions as a teen...
17. Al Capone Al Capone Uncategorised Infamous Chicago gangster Al Capone was born in the tough Williamsburgh section of Brooklyn, NY, the fourth of nine children of Italian immigrants from Naples. Capone was a born sociopath. In the sixth grade he beat up a teacher and promptly quit school. He picked up his education from the streets, "making his bones" when he joined the notorious James Street gang...
18. Pat O'Brien Pat O'Brien Actor, Some Like It Hot Although he came to be called "Hollywood's Irishman in Residence"--and, along with good friends James Cagney, Allen Jenkins, Frank McHugh and a few others were called "The Irish Mafia"--and he often played Irish immigrants, Pat O'Brien was US-born and -bred. As a young boy the devoutly Roman Catholic O'Brien considered entering the seminary to study for the priesthood...
19. Cornelia Otis Skinner Cornelia Otis Skinner Actress, The Uninvited
20. George O'Brien George O'Brien Actor, Sunrise George was the son of the San Francisco Chief of Police who became a college athlete. He was the Heavyweight Boxing Champion of the Pacific Fleet during World War I. In the early 1920s, George wound up in Hollywood where he worked as a stuntman and part time actor. In 1924, Director John Ford picked virtually unknown George to star in his first picture...
21. Ramon Novarro Ramon Novarro Actor, Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ The son of a prosperous Mexican dentist, Ramon Novarro moved to Los Angeles with his family as refugees from the Mexican revolution of 1916. After stints as a ballet dancer, piano teacher and singing waiter, he became a film extra in 1917. For five years he remained an extra until director Rex Ingram cast him as Rupert in The Prisoner of Zenda...
22. Ernest Hemingway Ernest Hemingway Writer, To Have and Have Not Ernest Hemingway was an American writer who won the Pulitzer Prize (1953) and the Nobel Prize in Literature (1954) for his novel The Old Man and the Sea, which was made into a 1958 film The Old Man and the Sea. He was born into the hands of his physician father. He was the second of six children of Dr. Clarence Hemingway and Grace Hemingway (the daughter of English immigrants)...
23. Georges Metaxa Georges Metaxa Actor, Swing Time Character actor of genteel demeanor in US films.
24. Jay C. Flippen Jay C. Flippen Actor, The Killing Jay C. Flippen could probably be characterized these days as one of those distinctive faces you know but whose name escapes you while viewing old 50s and 60s movies and TV. His distinctive bulldog mug, beetle brows, bulky features, and silver-white hair were ideally suited for roles as criminals and rugged adventurers...
25. Madge Blake Madge Blake Actress, Batman: The Movie
26. Alma Reville Alma Reville Writer, Shadow of a Doubt
27. Akim Tamiroff Akim Tamiroff Actor, Touch of Evil Though born in Russia and having a Russian-sounding name, Akim Tamiroff is actually of Armenian descent. At 19 he decided to pursue acting as a career and was chosen from among 500 applicants to the Moscow Art Theater School. There he studied under the great Konstantin Stanislavski, and launched a stage career...
28. George Brent George Brent Actor, Dark Victory The favorite leading man of star actress Bette Davis, was born George Brendan Nolan, near Dublin, and became an orphan at the tender age of eleven. For a while, he stayed with an aunt in New York, but returned to Ireland to study at the University of Dublin. After leaving university in 1919, George became a courier for Sinn Fein leader Michael Collins...
29. Aline MacMahon Aline MacMahon Actress, The Search Aline MacMahon was born of Irish/Russian ancestry on May 3 1899, the daughter of William Marcus MacMahon and Jennie Simon MacMahon. Her father went on to become editor-in-chief of Munsey's Magazine, while her mother pursued a theatrical acting career from middle-age and lived to the ripe old age of 107...
30. Hoagy Carmichael Hoagy Carmichael Soundtrack, Goodfellas Award-winning songwriter ("Stardust", "Ole Buttermilk Sky", "Georgia on My Mind"), composer, pianist, actor and singer, educated at Indiana University (LL.B). He played piano in the college bands, and later gave up a law practise for a career in songwriting. He joined ASCAP in 1931, and his chief musical collaborators included Mitchell Parish...
31. Mervyn Johns Mervyn Johns Actor, Dead of Night
32. Gale Sondergaard Gale Sondergaard Actress, The Life of Emile Zola Sly, manipulative, dangerously cunning and sinister were the key words that best described the roles that Gale Sondergaard played in motion pictures, making her one of the most talented character actresses ever seen on the screen. She was educated at the University of Minnesota and later married director Herbert J. Biberman...
33. Evelyn Brent Evelyn Brent Actress, The Last Command Petite, sultry leading lady of the 1920's and 30's, who was born and schooled in Tampa, Florida, until the age of ten when she lost her mother. She moved to New York with her dad and started modelling while still in her teens. Her original intention was to go into the teaching profession. Instead, she...
34. Walter Woolf King Walter Woolf King Actor, A Night at the Opera The son of a whiskey peddler, Walter Woolf King began singing for his supper at quite a young age, in churches especially. Following graduation, he pursued his dream and partnered in a vaudeville musical act with pianist Charles Le Maire. He made his Broadway debut in 1919 and developed a resilient name for himself during the 1920s as a baritone in various operettas and musical comedies...
35. Jobyna Ralston Jobyna Ralston Actress, Wings Curly-locked, cherubic knockabout comedienne of the silent cinema. Her mother, portrait photographer Mrs. Kemp Raulston, named her after her favorite actress, Jobyna Howland, and harboured ambitions for her daughter to achieve similar fame. After a failed teenage marriage to a local farmer, Jobyna left Tennessee and went to New York in 1919 to join the Ned Wayburn dancing academy...
36. Madge Bellamy Madge Bellamy Actress, White Zombie Madge got her start in theater working with a stock company in Denver. Put under a personal contract by a Broadway producer, Madge got her big break when she replaced Helen Hayes in the Broadway play "Dear Brutus". Her success as a stage actress led to her being signed by Fox Pictures. After appearing in a number of movies in the early 20's...
37. Richard Arlen Richard Arlen Actor, Wings During World War I, Richard Arlen served in the Royal Canadian Flying Corps as a pilot, but he never saw combat. After the war he drifted round and eventually wound up in Los Angeles, where he got a job as a motorcycle messenger at a film laboratory. When he crashed into the gates of Paramount Pictures and suffered a broken leg...
38. Harold Bennett Harold Bennett Actor, Are You Being Served?
39. Byron Foulger Byron Foulger Actor, Sullivan's Travels One of those wonderfully busy character actors whose face is familiar if not his name, mild-mannered actor Byron Foulger began performing with community theater, and stock and repertory companies after graduating from the University of Utah. He met his future wife, character actress Dorothy Adams, in one of these companies. The marriage lasted nearly five decades and ended only with his death...
40. Colleen Moore Colleen Moore Actress, Ella Cinders Colleen Moore was born Kathleen Morrison on August 19, 1900, in Port Huron, Michigan. Her father was an irrigation engineer and his job was good enough to provide the family a middle-class environment. She was educated in parochial schools and studied at the famed Detroit Conservatory. Colleen's family moved to Atlanta...
41. Irving Thalberg Irving Thalberg Producer, Laugh, Clown, Laugh Thalberg was born in New York City of German immigrant parents. He had a bad heart, having contracted rheumatic fever as a teenager and was plagued with other ailments all of his life. He was quite intelligent with a thirst for knowledge but, convinced that he would never see thirty, he skipped college and became...
42. Martha Mansfield Martha Mansfield Actress, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde Stunning silent screen actress Martha Mansfield was a musical comedy star in New York City by the time she entered films in 1916 for Max Linder. Before long she advanced to second leads in features, including the role of Millicent Carew in the John Barrymore starrer Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, which to this day remains her best known...
43. Howard Freeman Howard Freeman Actor, Letter from an Unknown Woman With many years' experience on the stage, reliable character actor Howard Freeman entered the film industry in 1942. In a career lasting 23 years, the heavyset actor specialized in portraying oily businessmen, pompous government officials (as in The Snake Pit), gruff fathers or neighborhood busybodies, but often with a light comedic touch.
44. Byron Haskin Byron Haskin Director, The War of the Worlds After graduation from the University of California at Berkeley, Byron Haskin worked for a time as a newspaper cartoonist. He began his career in the film industry, in 1920, as a commercial-industrial movie photographer, and then as a cameraman for Pathe and International Newsreel. Later he became an assistant director at Selznick Productions...
45. Benny Rubin Benny Rubin Actor, Here Comes Mr. Jordan
46. Duke Ellington Duke Ellington Soundtrack, The Matrix Composer ("It Don't Mean a Thing if It Ain't Got That Swing", "Sophisticated Lady", "Mood Indigo", "Solitude", "In a Mellotone", "Satin Doll"), pianist and conductor, holder of an honorary music degree from Wilberforce University and an LHD from Milton College, Duke Ellington led his own orchestra by 1918...
47. James Wong Howe James Wong Howe Cinematographer, The Thin Man Master cinematographer James Wong Howe, whose career stretched from silent pictures through the mid-'70s, was born Wong Tung Jim in Canton (now Guangzhou), China, on August 28, 1899, the son of Wong How. His father emigrated to America the year James was born, settling in Pasco, Washington, where he worked for the Northern Pacific Railroad...
48. Guinn 'Big Boy' Williams Guinn 'Big Boy' Williams Actor, A Star Is Born The son of a rancher-turned-politician, Guinn Williams was given the nickname "Big Boy" (and he was, too - 6' 2" of mostly solid muscle from years of working on ranches and playing semi-pro and pro baseball) by Will Rogers, with whom he made one of his first films, in 1919. Although his father wanted him to attend West Point (he had been an officer in the Army during World War I)...
49. Lillian Disney Lillian Disney Self, Episode #5.36
50. May McAvoy May McAvoy Actress, The Jazz Singer Silent screen star May McAvoy was born in an upper scale area of New York City. Her well-to-do family owned and operated a large livery stable situated where the Waldorf-Astoria now stands. She initially wanted to be a teacher but became intrigued with show business after watching a friend rehearse a show at a nearby vaudeville theater...
1-50 of 1,292 names.