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|Also Known As:||Harry Lillis Crosby||Died:||October 14, 1977|
|Born:||May 3, 1903||Cause of Death:||heart attack|
|Birth Place:||Tacoma, Washington||Profession:||Cast ... singer actor comedian drummer producer businessman|
Popular crooner and durable boxoffice star of the 1930s, 40s and 50s who amassed one of the entertainment world's largest fortunes. Crosby made his screen debut as a band singer in "King of Jazz" (1930), but his most successful films were the "Road" movies with Bob Hope and Dorothy Lamour. Crosby's effortless baritone, caramel-mellow singing style, and his easy-going, self-mocking charm helped him endure while other, flashier talents faded around him. His escapist material both in song (with mostly a "Sunny Side of the Street/Pennies From Heaven" upbeat philosophy) and in reassuring, sentimental films--"Holiday Inn" (1942), "Going My Way" (1944), "The Bells of St. Mary's" (1945), "White Christmas" (1954) and "High Society" (1956)--helped audiences forget the Depression, WWII and its aftermath and account for his enormous popularity. Although he refused to play screen heavies, in the 1950s Crosby proved his skill as dramatic actor with his complex performance as a washed-up alcoholic singer in "The Country Girl" (1954); he played another alcoholic, this time a doctor, in the 1966 remake of "Stagecoach". Crosby co-authored an autobiography, "Call Me Lucky" in 1952, but his son Gary's scathing portrait of his father in "Going My Own Way" (1983) revealed a stern, unloving disciplinarian contrary to Crosby's easy-going public image.
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