Charles Rogers


Actor
Charles Rogers

Biography

A good-looking, pleasant leading man of mostly light Hollywood films, Charles 'Buddy' Rogers broke into films at the urging of his father, who had submitted his son's photograph to a talent search. As one of 20 selected to screen test and undergo a six-month training course, he made his film debut in "Fascinating Youth" (1926). The following year was particularly historic for him as he p...

Family & Companions

Claire Windsor
Companion
Actor. Had relationship in the late 1920s.
Mary Pickford
Wife
Actor. Married from 1937 until her death in 1979; 11 years his senior.
Beverly Ricono
Wife
Real estate agent. Married in 1981; survived him.

Notes

Rogers and Pickford were two of the early donors to the Motion Picture and Television Home.

He has an award named after him that is presented by the Hollywood Women's Press Club.

Biography

A good-looking, pleasant leading man of mostly light Hollywood films, Charles 'Buddy' Rogers broke into films at the urging of his father, who had submitted his son's photograph to a talent search. As one of 20 selected to screen test and undergo a six-month training course, he made his film debut in "Fascinating Youth" (1926). The following year was particularly historic for him as he played opposite future wife Mary Pickford in "My Best Girl" and acted in one of the most famous silent films, the first Oscar-winning Best Picture, "Wings". In the latter, Rogers portrayed one of two All-American boys (in love with the same girl--Clara Bow) who enlist in the army air corps during WWI. Renowned for its combat flying sequences, the film introduced him to sophomore director William Wellman, tapped for his exposure to aerial warfare as a member of the Layfayette Escadrille Flying Corps, and the two worked together again on another flying picture, "Young Eagles" (1930).

With his narrow range but pleasant charm, Rogers headlined a series of undistinguished films at Paramount, including being cast as the Jewish boy in "Abie's Irish Rose" (1929). In 1931, he asked to be let out of his contract with the studio and embarked on a second, minor career as an orchestra leader, forming a band with Johnny Green and Gene Krupa with Mary Martin and Marilyn Maxwell as vocalists. After nearly ten years of pursuing Pickford, he finally convinced her to marry him in 1937. In the early 40s, he replaced Donald Woods as the husband of Lupe Velez in three of the "Mexican Spitfire" movies before embarking on a career as a producer, which saw him oversee (along with Pickford) "Sleep, My Love" (1948), among other pictures. His last feature appearance came in "The Parson and the Outlaw" (1957), which he also produced.

Life Events

1925

Father submitted photograph to Famous Players-Lasky nationwide talent search; one of 20 selected for a screen test

1925

Chosen by Paramount to take a six-month training course for actors

1926

Film debut, "Fascinating Youth"; alongside other winners of the talent search

1927

Starred in the first Oscar-winning Best Picture, the silent "Wings"; second feature directed by William Wellman; also starred Clara Bow

1927

Acted opposite future wife Mary Pickford in "My Best Girl" (Pickford's last silent movie)

1928

First time headlining a movie, "Varsity"; also his first talkie, it contained 13 minutes of dialogue, mostly in the last 10 minutes of the film

1930

Reteamed with Wellman for "Young Eagles", once again playing a WWI American pilot

1931

Asked to be released from Paramount contract; formed first in a series of orchestras with musicians Johnny Green and Gene Krupa and singers Mary Martin and Marilyn Maxwell; reportedly Pickford provided some of the financing for the band

1933

Acted in movie musical, "Take a Chance"

1935

Played playboy son of George Barbier in Edward Ludwig's fluffy musical, "Old Man Rhythm"

1941

Replaced Donald Woods as Lupe Velez's husband in the "Mexican Spitfire" movies, acting in "Mexican Spitfire's Baby"; also acted in "Mexican Spitfire at Sea" and "Mexican Spitfire Sees a Ghost" (both 1942)

1946

First producing credits, two movies directed by Reginald LeBorg, "Little Iodine" and "Susie Steps Out" (also produced LeBorg's "Adventures of Don Coyote" 1947)

1947

Produced Cy Enfield's "Stork Bites Man"

1948

Returned to screen after six year absence, "An Innocent Affair/Don't Trust Your Husband"

1948

Produced Douglas Sirk's "Sleep, My Love"; Pickford also produced after 12 years away from films

1957

Final screen appearance, "The Parson and the Outlaw"; also produced

Videos

Movie Clip

Bohemian Girl, The (1936) - Heart Of A Gypsy Not credited, because she was deceased in a notorious, and never proven, suicide, by the release date, usually-blonde Thelma Todd’s complete and final appearance, as a gypsy singer, early in the Laurel And Hardy vehicle The Bohemian Girl, 1936.
Bohemian Girl, The (1936) - A Long Woman And A Dark Journey Headliners Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy as gypsies plying their trade (picking pockets) in 18th century Austria, Harry Bowen their intoxicated mark, Sam Lufkin their second, in The Bohemian Girl, 1936, from Hal Roach Studios.
Tit For Tat (1935) - My Partner Had A Nervous Breakdown Opening the Hal Roach Laurel & Hardy short from 1935, James Morton the cop, Charley Hall and Mae Busch the shopkeepers next door, in Tit For Tat.
Flying Deuces, The (1939) - At The Fish Market In Des Moines Opening in fake Paris, Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy, in a one-off independently produced picture, away from their Hal Roach studio home, start with word-play then introduce charming Parisienne Georgette (Jean Parker), Oliver’s love interest, in The Flying Deuces, 1939.
Flying Deuces, The (1939) - At Large In Seine In Paris, Oliver has been spurned by his French girlfriend, and presumes Stan will join him in a suicide dive, unaware of a giant shark cruising the Seine, in the independent Laurel & Hardy feature The Flying Deuces, 1939.
Flying Deuces, The (1939) - Shine On Harvest Moon Stan (Laurel) and Oliver (Hardy) have just left a note for the (enraged) commandant (Charles Middleton) that they’re leaving the French Foreign Legion, since Oliver has now succeeded in forgetting his French girlfriend, pausing for a 1908 standard by Nora Bayes and Jack Norworth, in The Flying Deuces, 1939.
Brewster's Millions (1945) - On Our Way To The Poorhouse Mickey (Mischa Auer) and Trixie (June Havoc, her first scene) arrive to tell Monty (Dennis O’Keefe, title character) the Philadelphia show, designed to burn money, had to close, fianceè Peggy (Helen Walker) and pals (Joe Sawyer, Herbert Rudley) helping, in Brewster’s Millions, 1945.
Babes In Toyland (1934) - Anything You Can Do... As hapless toy-makers Stannie Dum and Ollie Dee, Oliver wants to know about the “pee-wees” on which Stan has spent his money, preventing them from bailing out their kindly landlady Mother Peep, early in the eventually-acclaimed Hal Roach Laurel & Hardy vehicle Babes In Toyland, 1934.
Babes In Toyland (1934) - March Of The Wooden Soldiers SPOILER and among the weirdest events in any Hal Roach or Laurel & Hardy film, the hairy “bogeymen” led by Barnaby (Henry Kleinbach) have invaded Toyland, when toy-makers Stan and Ollie realize the giant soldiers they ordered by mistake can be useful, the climax of Babes In Toyland, 1934.
Way Out West (1937) - Commence To Dancin' The song best known by this name, actually called "At The Ball, That's All," performed by the Avalon Boys, danced by Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy, just arrived in Brushwood Gulch, told off by the sheriff (Stanley Ridges), a sublime early moment in one of their best films, Way Out West, 1937.
Way Out West (1937) - Four Months To Christmas Continuing their opening scene in which Oliver gets dunked in a river, Stan tries to hitch a ride, whereupon the boys meet Vivien Oakland, who, it shall become clear, they should not be messing-with, in Laurel and Hardy's Way Out West, 1937.
Way Out West (1937) - I Smell A Rat Mary (Rosina Lawrence), the unschooled ward and servant of saloon keepers Lola (Sharon Lynne) and Mickey (James Finlayson), has no idea she's signing away an inherited gold mine, but the couriers of the deed (Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy), begin to suspect, in Way Out West, 1937.

Family

B H Rogers
Father
Probate judge, newspaper editor.
Ronald Charles Rogers
Son
Adopted at age six in 1943; became estranged from his adoptive parents; married c. 1955; had two children.
Roxanne Rogers
Daughter
Waitress. Adopted as a baby in 1944; became estranged from her adoptive parents; married three times.

Companions

Claire Windsor
Companion
Actor. Had relationship in the late 1920s.
Mary Pickford
Wife
Actor. Married from 1937 until her death in 1979; 11 years his senior.
Beverly Ricono
Wife
Real estate agent. Married in 1981; survived him.

Bibliography

Notes

Rogers and Pickford were two of the early donors to the Motion Picture and Television Home.

He has an award named after him that is presented by the Hollywood Women's Press Club.