Cambridge Encyclopedia » Cambridge Encyclopedia Vol. 45

Laurel and Hardy - History, Trivia, Laurel and Hardy in other languages, Bibliography, Compare to

film comedy england films

Comedians who formed the first Hollywood film comedy team. The ‘thin one’, Stan Laurel (1890–1965), originally Arthur Stanley Jefferson, was born in Ulverston, Lancashire, NW England, UK. Laurel had been on stage in England and was Charlie Chaplin's understudy when his troupe toured the USA (1910, 1912), and began making silent films with Nuts in May (1917). The ‘fat one’, Oliver (Norvell) Hardy (Jr) (1892–1957), born in Harlem, Georgia, USA, began as a singer at age eight, left college to join a troupe of minstrels, then drifted into the film industry, making his film debut in Outwitting Dad (1914). Although they chanced to appear in the short film Lucky Dog (1917), they did not form their comedy team until 1927 with Slipping Wives. Together for three decades, they made more than 100 films, 27 of them features; their best efforts are generally thought to be their early (1927–31) shorts. Their contrasting personalities, general clumsiness, and disaster-packed predicaments made them a universally popular comedy duo. Hardy was fat, pretentious, and blustering, while Laurel was bullied, confused, and emotional. Laurel, the creative mind behind the foolishness, outlived Hardy to accept a special Oscar in 1960.

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almost 8 years ago

I remember the 30's and the fun of Saturday at the movies. The dun of Laurel and Hardy.


Cheers Elmer