TCM Archive Materials VIEW ALL ARCHIVES (29)
|Also Known As:||Died:||June 22, 1987|
|Born:||May 10, 1899||Cause of Death:||pneumonia|
|Birth Place:||Omaha, Nebraska, USA||Profession:||Cast ...|
RATE AND COMMENT
Began performing in vaudeville, paired with sister Adele; first act had them portray a miniature bride and groom
Broadway debut with Adele in "Over the Top"
Appeared in the Broadway musical "For Goodness' Sake" with a score that included songs by George Gershwin
London stage debut, "Stop Flirting", the retitled version of "For Goodness' Sake"
First formal collaboration with George and Ira Gershwin, "Lady, Be Good"; reprised roles in London
Acted opposite sister Adele in "Funny Face"; score by George and Ira Gershwin
Assisted in choreographing numbers for the Gershwin show "Girl Crazy", starring Ethel Merman and Ginger Rogers
Last stage show in which he co-starred with his sister Adele, "The Band Wagon"
Last Broadway and London stage show before venturing to Hollywood, "Gay Divorce" (later adapted to film as "The Gay Divorcee"), with Claire Luce as his leading lady and dance partner
Film debut, a small guest star part as Joan Crawford's partner in climactic production numbers of "Dancing Lady"
First sizable film role and first on screen partnering with Ginger Rogers in RKO's "Flying Down to Rio"; introduced the "Carioca" dance
First starring role, opposite Rogers, in "The Gay Divorcee"; introduced the Oscar-winning song "The Continental"
Team of Astaire and Rogers listed in annual motion picture exhibitors poll of top ten box office stars three years in a row; placed fourth, third and seventh
After box office failure of first starring film without Rogers, "A Damsel in Distress", voted "box office poison" by motion picture exhibitors along with Marlene Dietrich, Katharine Hepburn, Joan Crawford, Edward Arnold and others
Left RKO after last 1930s film with Rogers, "The Story of Vernon and Irene Castle"
First film at MGM, "Broadway Melody of 1940", opposite Eleanor Powell
Made two popular films opposite Rita Hayworth at Columbia, "You'll Never Get Rich" and "You Were Never Lovelier"
Signed by MGM; worked on first film there, the all-star revue, "Ziegfeld Follies", which featured "The Babbitt and the Bromide", a comic dance number which paired him with Gene Kelly; Astaire had introduced the number on Broadway with his sister Adele in "Smiles"
Announced retirement after box-office failure of "Yolanda and the Thief" (1945) and subsidiary role in "Blue Skies" (1946)
Opened chain of Fred Astaire Dance Studios (date approximate)
Returned to films to replace an injured Gene Kelly opposite Judy Garland in "Easter Parade"
Reteamed with Ginger Rogers after an ailing Judy Garland withdrew from "The Barkleys of Broadway"
Appeared in one of his best films, the semi-autobiographical "The Band Wagon", loosely based on the stage musical
Made his last regular song-and-dance films, "Funny Face" and "Silk Stockings"
Appeared in "An Evening with Fred Astaire" (NBC), the first of four highly acclaimed, Emmy-winning TV specials over the span of a decade, partnering him with dancer Barrie Chase; won Emmy
First dramatic role, "On the Beach"
Starred in the NBC variety special "Another Evening with Fred Astaire"; received Emmy nomination
Won Emmy Award for the NBC variety special "Astaire Time"
Acted in "The Pleasure of His Company"
Hosted and occasionally acted in "Alcoa Premiere", an anthology series aired on ABC; appeared as the Devil in six different personas in one entry entitled "Mr. Lucifer"
One-shot return to musical films, "Finian's Rainbow"
Starred in the NBC variety special "The Fred Astaire Show"; also produced
Had recurring role as the debonaire retired burglar Alister Mundy, father of Robert Wagner's Alexander Mundy in the ABC series "It Takes a Thief"
Starred in the ABC movie sequel "The Over-the-Hill Gang Ride Again"
Narrated the animated children's holiday special "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town"
Appeared in the award-winning NBC variety special "Jack Lemmon in 'S Wonderful, 'S Marvelous, 'S Gershwin"
Was one of the narrators for the compilation film "That's Entertainment!", a collection of MGM's great movie musical scenes
Paired on screen with Jennifer Jones in the all-star "disaster" flick "The Towering Inferno"; receieved a Best Supporting Actor Academy Award nomination
Narrated the children's animated holiday special "The Easter Bunny Is Comin' to Town" (ABC)
Had featured role in "Un Taxi Mauve/The Purple Taxi"
Received Emmy for dramatic performance as elderly house painter whose heart attack makes him dependent on his family in the NBC movie "A Family Upside Down"; starred opposite Helen Hayes
Played eight roles in the NBC holiday movie "The Man in the Santa Claus Suit"
Last acting role in a feature film, "Ghost Story"
Appeared as himself in the documentary feature, "George Stevens: A Filmmaker's Journey"
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