Jimmy Durante

Jimmy Durante

Highest Rated: 100% Two Girls and a Sailor (1944)

Lowest Rated: 70% It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World (1963)

Birthday: Feb 10, 1893

Birthplace: New York, New York, USA

A performer of stage, screen and radio, Jimmy Durante possessed a unique gravelly voice, a raucous manner and a persona which later in life radiated a love of the old showbiz traditions of vaudeville and slapstick. He began his career playing honky-tonk piano in New York saloons, working his way into a vaudeville act with partners Lou Clayton and Eddie Jackson. The three opened the Club Durant in 1919, a speakeasy which rocketed them to fame. The trio spent the 1920s entertaining from their club as well as on the vaudeville circuit, including a long run at the Palace Theater. They also appeared in Ziegfeld's "Show Girl" (1929) and Cole Porter's "The New Yorkers" (1930). Durante--with his brash, lovable mien and cries of "hotcha-cha!"--branched out alone in such Broadway shows as "Strike Me Pink" (1933), Billy Rose's "Jumbo" (1935) with a score by Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart and book by Charles MacArthur and Ben Hecht, and another Cole Porter musical, "Red, Hot and Blue." He also made numerous radio appearances in the 1930s and 1940s. Durante's film career started with "Roadhouse Nights" (1930). He was successfully teamed with Marion Davies in "Blondie of the Follies" (1932). Durante appeared in a total of 21 films in the 1930s, of which the most notable were "The Phantom President" (1932), with George M. Cohan, the all-star "Hollywood Party" (1934), in which he served as host, and "Palooka" (1934), which introduced his theme song, "Inka-Dinka-Doo." He made another 15 films, mostly as an avuncular character actor and sidekick. Among his best were the Frank Sinatra musical "It Happened in Brooklyn" (1947), the Esther Williams splasher "On an Island with You" (1948), "Billy Rose's Jumbo" (1962) and his swan song, literally "kicking the bucket" in the all-star "It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World" (1963). He guested on numerous TV shows through the early 1950s, finally earning his own popular series from 1954-57 (first on NBC, then CBS). He continued popping up on variety specials through the early 1970s, and narrated the frequently re-run Christmas special "Frosty the Snowman" (CBS, 1969). A kind and much-loved man on-stage and off, Durante's rasped exclamations "Everybody wants ta get into th' act!," "Stop da music!" and "Surrounded by assassins!" have entered the American consciousness.

Photos

Highest rated movies

Filmography

Movies

Credit
73% 72% Frosty the Snowman Narrator - 1969
No Score Yet 52% Alice Through the Looking Glass Humpty Dumpty (Character) - 1966
70% 83% It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World Smiler Grogan (Character) - 1963
No Score Yet 57% Billy Rose's Jumbo Anthony "Pop" Wonder (Character) - 1962
No Score Yet 53% Pepe Self - 1961
No Score Yet No Score Yet Beau James Self - 1957
No Score Yet No Score Yet The Milkman Breezy Albright (Character) - 1951
No Score Yet 49% The Great Rupert Mr. Louie Amendo (Character) - 1950
No Score Yet 45% On an Island With You Buckley (Character) - 1948
83% 44% It Happened in Brooklyn Nick Lombardi (Character) - 1947
No Score Yet 25% This Time for Keeps Ferdi Farro (Character) - 1947
No Score Yet 50% Two Sisters From Boston Spike (Character) - 1946
No Score Yet 64% Music for Millions Andrews (Character) - 1944
100% 84% Two Girls and a Sailor Billy Kipp (Character) - 1944
No Score Yet No Score Yet You're in the Army Now Jeeper Smith (Character) - 1941
86% 82% The Man Who Came to Dinner Banjo (Character) - 1941
No Score Yet No Score Yet Melody Ranch Cornelius J. Courtney (Character) - 1940
No Score Yet 72% Little Miss Broadway Jimmy Clayton (Character) - 1938
No Score Yet No Score Yet Start Cheering Willie Gumbatz (Character) $23 1938
No Score Yet No Score Yet Forbidden Music Jonah J. Whistler (Character) - 1936
No Score Yet No Score Yet Carnival Fingers (Character) - 1935
No Score Yet 20% What! No Beer? Jimmy Potts (Character) - 1935
No Score Yet No Score Yet George White's Scandals Happy McGillicuddy (Character) - 1934
No Score Yet 29% Hollywood Party Himself/Schnarzan (Character) - 1934
No Score Yet No Score Yet Student Tour Hank Merman (Character) - 1934
No Score Yet 29% Palooka Knobby Walsh/Junior (Character) - 1934
No Score Yet No Score Yet Strictly Dynamite Moxie (Character) - 1934
No Score Yet 67% Hell Below Ptomaine - Ship's Cook (Character) - 1933
No Score Yet 44% Meet the Baron Joe McGoo (Character) - 1933
No Score Yet 60% The Wet Parade Abe Shilling (Character) - 1932
No Score Yet 36% The Passionate Plumber Julius J. McCracken (Character) - 1932
No Score Yet 50% Blondie of the Follies Jimmy (Character) - 1932
No Score Yet 26% Speak Easily James (Character) - 1932
No Score Yet No Score Yet The Phantom President Curly Cooney (Character) - 1932
No Score Yet No Score Yet The New Adventures of Get-Rich-Quick Wallingford Schnozzle (Character) - 1931
No Score Yet No Score Yet The Cuban Love Song O.O. Jones (Character) - 1931
No Score Yet No Score Yet Roadhouse Nights Daffy (Character) - 1930

TV

Credit
No Score Yet No Score Yet The Forsaken Westerns Sergeant Weaver (Character) 2019
No Score Yet No Score Yet The Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour Guest 1971-1972
No Score Yet No Score Yet The Mothers-in-Law Unknown (Guest Star) 1969
No Score Yet No Score Yet What's My Line? Guest 1965 1963
No Score Yet No Score Yet I've Got a Secret Guest 1956

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