skip navigation
Overview for Stan Laurel
Stan Laurel

Stan Laurel


TCM Archive Materials VIEW ALL ARCHIVES (4)

Recent DVDs

Laurel &... Laurel & Hardy were one of the most critically acclaimed comedy teams of early... more info $64.65was $99.98 Buy Now

The Little... The Little Rascals is widely regarded as one of the best-known and most... more info $5.95was $7.93 Buy Now

Pick a Star ... Jack Haley (the Tin Man in the Wizard of Oz) stars in this smorgasbord of... more info $14.95was $17.99 Buy Now

Hollywood... The screen's great Schnarzan (Jimmy Durante) wants to wow the visiting Baron... more info $12.95was $17.99 Buy Now

The Hollywood... Much of the Hollywood Revue of 1929 was filmed in the graveyard shift so that... more info $12.95was $19.99 Buy Now

Classic Comedy... THE THREE STOOGES DOUBLE FEATURE Available sundry through Saturday! Larry, Shemp... more info $5.95was $9.95 Buy Now

Also Known As: Died: February 23, 1965
Born: June 16, 1890 Cause of Death: heart attack
Birth Place: Lanchashire, England, GB Profession: Cast ...


Family moved to Glasgow, Scotland, where father managed a theater
Made stage debut at Pickard's Panoptican in Glasgow, a quaint and unique house of entertainment that included a museum, a side show, a nickelodeon and a small theatre featuring second and third-rate music-hall style entertainment
Toured as a "golliwog" (a stuffed doll) in "Sleeping Beauty" pantomime
On tour in "Alone in the World"
Joined Fred Karno's company, playing various roles in show "Mumming Birds"; sometimes understudied fellow Karno performer Charlie Chaplin
Left Karno while on successful US tour in dispute over money, returning to England
Acted in "Ben Machree" at Prince's Theatre, managed by his brother Gordon
Joined Karno's second US tour as understudy to Chaplin (playing the lead role of The Drunk) in the show now titled "A Night in an English Music Hall"
Following Chaplin's departure from Karno for Hollywood, the troupe returned to England while Laurel remained behind touring North American vaudeville circuit in "The Nutty Burglars", a sketch of his own devising
Impersonated Chaplin in "The Keystone Trio" act
Began his professional association with actress Mae Dahlberg, appearing in a series of skits as Stan and Mae Jefferson (later Laurel)
Film debut in "Nuts in May" (with Dahlberg)
Returned to vaudeville in sketches with Dahlberg
Appeared in first film with Oliver Hardy (by coincidence, not design), the short "The Lucky Dog"
Made more than 60 one- and two-reelers as a solo performer
Burlesqued Rudolph Valentino in particularly well-received short "Mud and Sand"
Dismissed by Hal Roach (for second time) because of irregular status with common-law wife Dahlberg; signed with producer Joe Rock, who reportedly paid Mae to return to her native Australia
Returned to Roach studio where he reunited with Hardy for "Yes, Yes, Nanette" (co-directed by Laurel and Clarence Hennecke) and "Enough to Do" (directed by Laurel); Laurel did not act in either film
Replaced Hardy in "Get 'Em Young" after 'Babe' burned his arm in a cooking accident
'The Boys' appeared together in their eighth film, "Do Detectives Think?" (Hal Roach/Pathe), donning for the first time their trademark uniforms: a frumpy suit for Ollie, with a flapping tie to fiddle with and a postage stamp of a mustache; a natty little suit for Stanley, with a bow tie and an unruly crop of bristled hair-with a bowler hat as the crowning touch for each; Laurel and Fred Roach, however, cited "Putting Pants on Phillip" as the first official L & H film
First sound film made by Laurel and Hardy, "Unaccustomed As We are"
Made first Laurel and Hardy feature, "Pardon Us", directed by frequent helmsman James Parrott
The Laurel and Hardy comedy short "The Music Box" won the first Oscar ever given in the category of Best Short Subjects (Live Action Comedy)
Despite Laurel's increasing difficulties on set as a result of alcoholism, "Sons of the Desert" (based on their silent two-reeler "We Faw Down" 1928, one of the few shorts on which Leo McCarey received directorial credit) became one of L & H's most-loved films
Locked horns with Roach on "Babes in Toyland"; Laurel had rejected the script that Roach had written, and subsequently relationship was 'strictly business' (though they reportedly mended fences later in life); Roach's throwing up of his hands and allowing Laurel to have his way resulted in one of L & H's best films, as well as the best movie based on the Victor Herbert operetta
Officially changed surname to 'Laurel'
Last L & H shorts for Roach, "Tit for Tat", "The Fixer Uppers" and "Thicker Than Water"
First producing credit, "Our Relations"
Initial teaming with Harry Langdon providing the story, "Block-Heads"; also "The Flying Deuces" (1939)
Last quality L & H film, "Saps at Sea", directed by Gordon Douglas; story by Langdon
Formed Laurel and Hardy Feature Productions
After final falling out with Hal Roach, 'The Boys' fell head-first into the machinery, working initially at Fox and later at MGM; treated scandalously, they delivered listless turns in anonymous, dreary pictures; unlike at Roach, had no creative input into the comedies
Filmed one last L & H short, "The Tree in a Test Tube"
Diagnosed as diabetic
With Hardy enjoyed great success on the live stage, particularly in Great Britain; returning to his English music hall roots, Laurel wrote sketches for the duo which delighted sellout crowds
Final Laurel and Hardy film, "Atoll K/Utopia", doomed by poor script and production; uncredited directing by former Roach helmsman Arthur Goulding
Suffered a paralyzing stroke early in the year
Oliver Hardy died on August 7; Laurel resolved never to work on film again
Presented special Academy Award for "his creative pioneering in the field of cinema comedy"; dubbed the little bald man of gold 'Mr. Clean' and proudly displayed it in his home
Laurel and Hardy Museum opened in Ulverston, Lancashire, England, the town of Laurel's birth

Please support TCMDB by adding to this information.

Click here to contribute