Stan Laurel

Actor, Director, Screenwriter
With his prominently pointed chin, bowler hat, and unwavering childlike grin, comedy legend Stan Laurel became one of the most iconic faces in the history of film as one-half of the acting team Laurel and Hardy. Getting ... Read more »
Born: 06/16/1890 in Lanchashire, England, GB

Filmography

Actor (38)

Laurel and Hardy Laughtoons 1979 - 1980 (TV Show)

Actor

The Best of Laurel and Hardy 1970 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

The Flying Deuces 1938 (Movie)

(Actor)

Block-Heads 1937 (Movie)

(Actor)

Way Out West 1936 (Movie)

(Actor)

Hollywood Party 1934 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Tit For Tat 1934 (Movie)

(Actor)

Sons of the Desert 1932 (Movie)

(Actor)

The Music Box 1931 (Movie)

(Actor)

Chicken Come Home 1930 (Movie)

(Actor)

Hollywood Revue of 1929 1929 (Movie)

(Actor)

The Laurel-Hardy Murder Case 1929 (Movie)

(Actor)

Big Business 1928 (Movie)

(Actor)

Hats Off 1926 (Movie)

(Actor)

A Chump at Oxford (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

A-Haunting We Will Go (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Air Raid Wardens (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Babes in Toyland (Movie)

Stanley Dum (Actor)

Brats (TV Show)

Actor

Great Guns (Movie)

Stan (Actor)

Habeas Corpus (Movie)

(Actor)

Jitterbugs (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Our Relations (Movie)

Stanley (Actor)

Pack up Your Troubles (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Pardon Us (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Pick a Star (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Postage Due (Movie)

(Actor)

Saps at Sea (Movie)

Stanley (Actor)

Sugar Daddies (TV Show)

Actor

Swiss Miss (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

The Big Noise (Movie)

Stanley (Actor)

The Bohemian Girl (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

The Bullfighters (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

The Dancing Masters (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

The Devil's Brother (Movie)

Stanlio (Actor)

The Midnight Patrol (Movie)

Stanley (Actor)

The Rogue Song (Movie)

Ali-Bek (Actor)
Writer (2)

Busy Bodies (TV Show)

Screenwriter

Swiss Miss (Movie)

(Screen Story)
Producer (1)

Our Relations (Movie)

(Producer)

Biography

With his prominently pointed chin, bowler hat, and unwavering childlike grin, comedy legend Stan Laurel became one of the most iconic faces in the history of film as one-half of the acting team Laurel and Hardy. Getting his start on the vaudeville stages of his native U.K. and as an understudy to none other than the great Charlie Chaplin, Laurel soon made the trek to America and the nascent film hub of Hollywood. Although he had appeared in dozens of short silent films, Laurel's intention upon joining Hal Roach Studios was to work primarily as a writer-director. That is, until coincidence and an astute director paired him with another up-and-coming comedic actor, the portly prince of the pratfall, Oliver Hardy. Early Laurel and Hardy shorts included the films "Duck Soup" (1927) and "Putting Pants on Philip" (1927). So strong were their comedic abilities, that even the addition of sound to film - the death knell to the careers of many of their contemporaries - did nothing to diminish their appeal. At the height of the Great Depression, Laurel and Hardy's brand of humor, one that emphasized the importance of smiling in the face of adversity, won over audiences in desperate need of laughter with films like "The Music Box" (1932), "Sons of the Desert" (1933), and "Babes in Toyland" (1934) . Although their relationship with Roach eventually became irreparably strained and later work with major studios MGM and 20th Century Fox yielded less-than-memorable films, the comedy duo remained popular with audiences in American and Europe well into the 1950s. In nearly 190 films that spanned the silent and sound eras, most of them alongside collaborator "Ollie" Hardy, Stan Laurel engrained himself into the very essence of cinema, and his gifts have been rediscovered by future generations of appreciative fans.

Relationships

Mae Dahlberg

Companion
Australian lived together from 1919 until 1925 common law wife appeared together in vaudeville shows as Stan and Mae Laurel she coined the name Laurel, favoring its fewer letters (than Jefferson) for billing purposes

Arthur Jefferson

Father
L & H's "Duck Soup" (1927) short based on "Home from the Honeymoon", an Arthur Jefferson sketch which Stan Laurel had performed on the English music hall stage

Gordon Jefferson

Brother

Lois Laurel

Daughter
born in 1928 married to Rand Brooks mother, Lois Neilsen

Stan Laurel

Son
born and died in 1930 only lived for a few days mother, Lois Neilsen

Madge Metcalfe

Mother

Lois Neilsen

Wife
married in August 23, 1926 divorced on September 10, 1935 mother of Laurel's two children

Ida Raphael

Wife
married from May 1946 until Laurel's death

Ruth Rogers

Wife
married in 1934 before his divorce from Lois Nielsen was finalized legally married on September 28, 1935 divorced in 1937 remarried in 1941 divorced a second time in 1946

Ivanova Shuvalova

Wife
married on January 1, 1938 divorced in 1940

EDUCATION

Queen's Park Academy

Milestones

1981

Laurel and Hardy Museum opened in Ulverston, Lancashire, England, the town of Laurel's birth

1960

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

1957

Oliver Hardy died on August 7; Laurel resolved never to work on film again

1955

Suffered a paralyzing stroke early in the year

1950

Final Laurel and Hardy film, "Atoll K/Utopia", doomed by poor script and production; uncredited directing by former Roach helmsman Arthur Goulding

1944

Diagnosed as diabetic

1941

Filmed one last L & H short, "The Tree in a Test Tube"

1940

Last quality L & H film, "Saps at Sea", directed by Gordon Douglas; story by Langdon

1940

Formed Laurel and Hardy Feature Productions

1938

Initial teaming with Harry Langdon providing the story, "Block-Heads"; also "The Flying Deuces" (1939)

1936

First producing credit, "Our Relations"

1935

Last L & H shorts for Roach, "Tit for Tat", "The Fixer Uppers" and "Thicker Than Water"

1934

Officially changed surname to 'Laurel'

1934

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

1933

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

1932

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)

1931

Made first Laurel and Hardy feature, "Pardon Us", directed by frequent helmsman James Parrott

1929

First sound film made by Laurel and Hardy, "Unaccustomed As We are"

1927

'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

1926

Replaced Hardy in "Get 'Em Young" after 'Babe' burned his arm in a cooking accident

1925

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

1924

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

1922

Burlesqued Rudolph Valentino in particularly well-received short "Mud and Sand"

1921

Appeared in first film with Oliver Hardy (by coincidence, not design), the short "The Lucky Dog"

1919

Returned to vaudeville in sketches with Dahlberg

1917

Film debut in "Nuts in May" (with Dahlberg)

1917

Began his professional association with actress Mae Dahlberg, appearing in a series of skits as Stan and Mae Jefferson (later Laurel)

1915

Impersonated Chaplin in "The Keystone Trio" act

1912

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"

1911

Left Karno while on successful US tour in dispute over money, returning to England

1911

Acted in "Ben Machree" at Prince's Theatre, managed by his brother Gordon

1910

Joined Fred Karno's company, playing various roles in show "Mumming Birds"; sometimes understudied fellow Karno performer Charlie Chaplin

1908

On tour in "Alone in the World"

1907

Toured as a "golliwog" (a stuffed doll) in "Sleeping Beauty" pantomime

1906

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

1905

Family moved to Glasgow, Scotland, where father managed a theater

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 int

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

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

Made more than 60 one- and two-reelers as a solo performer

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