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Encyclopedia > Buster Keaton
Buster Keaton

Born Joseph Frank Keaton VI
October 4, 1895(1895-10-04)
Piqua, Kansas
Died February 1, 1966 (aged 70)
Woodland Hills, California
Years active 1917–1966
Spouse(s) Natalie Talmadge (1921-1932)
Mae Scriven (1933-1936)
Eleanor Norris(1940-1966)
Official website

Joseph Frank "Buster" Keaton (October 4, 1895February 1, 1966) was an Academy Award-winning American comic actor and filmmaker. Best known for his silent films, his trademark was physical comedy with a stoic, deadpan expression on his face, earning him the nickname "The Great Stone Face" (referencing the Nathaniel Hawthorne story about the "Old Man of the Mountain").[citation needed] He has also been called "The Michelangelo of Silent Comedy". is the 277th day of the year (278th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1895 (MDCCCXCV) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Sunday of the 12-day-slower Julian calendar). ... Piqua is an area of Woodson County, Kansas. ... is the 32nd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1966 (MCMLXVI) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display full calendar) of the 1966 Gregorian calendar. ... Woodland Hills is a community within the City of Los Angeles. ... Natalie Talmadge (1899-1969) was a silent film actress. ... Although he never won an Oscar for any of his movie performances, the comedian Bob Hope received two honorary Oscars for his contributions to cinema. ... The Academy Honorary Award is given irregularly by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to celebrate motion picture achievements that are not covered by existing Academy Awards. ... is the 277th day of the year (278th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1895 (MDCCCXCV) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Sunday of the 12-day-slower Julian calendar). ... is the 32nd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1966 (MCMLXVI) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display full calendar) of the 1966 Gregorian calendar. ... Although he never won an Oscar for any of his movie performances, the comedian Bob Hope received two honorary Oscars for his contributions to cinema. ... Actors in period costume sharing a joke whilst waiting between takes during location filming. ... A silent film is a film which has no accompanying soundtrack. ... Stoicism is a school of Hellenistic philosophy, founded by Zeno of Citium in Athens in the early third century BC. It proved to be a popular and durable philosophy, with a following throughout Greece and the Roman Empire from its founding until all the schools of philosophy were ordered closed... Deadpan is a form of comedic delivery in which humour is presented without exhibiting a change in emotion or facial expression. ... Nathaniel Hawthorne (born Nathaniel Hathorne; July 4, 1804 – May 19, 1864) was a 19th century American novelist and short story writer. ... For other uses, see Old Man of the Mountain (disambiguation). ...


Keaton's career as a performer and director is widely considered to be among the most innovative and important work in the history of cinema. He was recognized as the seventh greatest director of all time by Entertainment Weekly.[1] Entertainment Weekly (sometimes abbreviated EW) is a magazine published by Time Inc. ...


A 2002 world-wide poll by Sight and Sound ranked Keaton's The General as the 15th best film of all time. Three other Keaton films received votes in the survey: Our Hospitality, Sherlock, Jr., and The Navigator.[2] The General is a 1927 silent comedy about a bumbling Confederate engineer (train driver) who pursues Union spies who steal his beloved locomotive, The General, which incidentally also carries his estranged girlfriend as well. ... While it is impossible to objectively determine the greatest film of all time, it is possible to discuss the films that have been regarded as the greatest ever. ... Our Hospitality is a silent comedy directed, produced, written by and starring Buster Keaton. ... Sherlock, Jr. ... The Navigator is a 1924 comedy directed by and starring Buster Keaton. ...

Contents

Biography

1994 stamp by caricaturist Al Hirschfeld

Al Hirschfeld photographed by Carl Van Vechten, 1955 Albert Hirschfeld (June 21, 1903 – January 20, 2003) was an American caricaturist, best known for his simple black and white satirical portraits of celebrities and Broadway stars. ...

Early life in vaudeville

Buster Keaton was born into a vaudeville family. His father was Joseph Hallie Keaton, a native of Vigo County, Indiana. Joe Keaton owned a traveling show with Harry Houdini called the Mohawk Indian Medicine Company, which performed on stage and sold patent medicine on the side. Buster Keaton was born in Piqua, Kansas, the small town where his mother, Myra Edith Cutler, happened to be when she went into labor. This article is about the musical variety theatre. ... Vigo County is a county located in the state of Indiana. ... Houdini redirects here. ... E.W. Kembles Deaths Laboratory in Colliers Magazine in 1906 Patent medicine is the somewhat misleading term given to various medical compounds sold under a variety of names and labels, though they were, for the most part, actually medicines with trademarks, not patented medicines. ... Piqua is an area of Woodson County, Kansas. ...


According to Keaton, in an interview that he and his wife Eleanor did with the CBC television program Telescope in 1964, Keaton acquired the nickname "Buster" at about six months of age. Keaton told interviewer Fletcher Markle that Harry Houdini happened to be present one day when the young Keaton took a tumble down a long flight of stairs without injury. After the infant sat up and shook off his experience, Houdini remarked, "That was a real buster!" According to Keaton, in those days, the word buster was used to refer to a spill or a fall that had the potential to produce injury. Thereafter, it was Keaton's father who began to use the nickname to refer to the youngster.[3] Despite Keaton's story, however, Houdini did not begin touring with the Keatons until Buster Keaton was well beyond infancy.[citation needed] Radio-Canada redirects here. ... Telescope is a Canadian television series which aired on the CBC between 1963 and 1973. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Houdini redirects here. ...


At the age of three, Buster began performing with his parents in The Three Keatons; the act was mainly a comedy sketch. Myra played the saxophone to one side while Joe and Buster performed on center stage. The young Keaton would goad his father by disobeying him, and the elder Keaton would respond by throwing him against the scenery, into the orchestra pit, or even into the audience. A suitcase handle was sewn into Keaton's clothing to aid with the constant tossing. The act evolved as Keaton learned to take trick falls safely; he was rarely injured or bruised on stage. Nevertheless, this knockabout style of comedy led to accusations of child abuse. Decades later, Keaton said that he was never hurt by his father and that the falls and physical comedy were a matter of proper technical execution. He claimed he was having so much fun that he would begin laughing as his father threw him across the stage. This drew fewer laughs from the audience, so he adopted his famous deadpan expression whenever he was working. Child abuse is the physical, psychological or sexual abuse or neglect of children. ...


The act ran up against laws banning child performers in vaudeville. It is said that, when one official saw Keaton in full costume and makeup, and asked a stagehand how old he was, the stagehand then pointed to the boy's mother, saying "I don't know, ask his wife!" According to one biographer, Keaton was made to go to school while performing in New York, but only attended for one day. Despite tangles with the law and a disastrous tour of music halls in the UK, Keaton was such a rising star in the theater that, when his parents tried to introduce their other children into the act, he remained the focus of attention. Music Hall is a form of British theatrical entertainment which reached its peak of popularity between 1850 and 1960. ...


Keaton himself stated that he learned to read and write late, and was taught by his mother. By the time he was 21, his father's alcoholism threatened the reputation of the family act, so Buster and his mother left Joe in Los Angeles. Buster travelled to New York, where his performing career moved from vaudeville to film. Although he did not see active combat, he served in World War I, during which time his hearing became impaired.[4] Alcoholism is the consumption of, or preoccupation with, alcoholic beverages to the extent that this behavior interferes with the drinkers normal personal, family, social, or work life, and may lead to physical or mental harm. ... “The Great War ” redirects here. ...


Silent film era

In February 1917, Keaton met Roscoe "Fatty" Arbuckle at the Talmadge Studios in New York City, where Arbuckle was under contract to Joseph M. Schenck. Joe Keaton disapproved of films, and Buster also had reservations about the medium. During his first meeting with Arbuckle, he asked to borrow one of the cameras to get a feel for how it worked. He took the camera back to his hotel room, dismantled and reassembled it. With this rough understanding of the mechanics of the moving pictures, he returned the next day, camera in hand, asking for work. He was hired as a co-star and gag-man, making his first appearance in The Butcher Boy. Keaton later claimed that he was soon Arbuckle's second director and his entire gag department. Keaton and Arbuckle became close friends. Roscoe Conkling Arbuckle, also known as Fatty Arbuckle (March 24, 1887 – June 29, 1933), was an American silent film comedian, director, and screenwriter. ... Van and Schenck were a popular United States Vaudeville duo in the 1910s and 1920s, consisting of Gus Van (real name August Von Glahn, August 12, 1886 - March 12, 1968), baritone and Joe Schenck (born Joseph Thuma Schenck, c. ... The Butcher Boy is a 1917 short comedy film starring Roscoe Fatty Arbuckle and Buster Keaton in his first film appearance. ...


After Keaton's successful work with Arbuckle, Schenck gave him his own production unit, Buster Keaton Comedies. He made a series of two-reel comedies, including One Week (1920), The Playhouse (1921), Cops (1922), and The Electric House (1922). Based on the success of these shorts, Keaton moved to full-length features. One Week is a 1920 short comedy film starring comedian Buster Keaton It was written and directed by Keaton and Edward F. Cline. ... The Playhouse is a 1921 film written and directed by Buster Keaton. ... Cops is a 1922 comedy short film which tells the story of a young man (Buster Keaton) who accidentally gets on the bad side of a citys entire police force, and is chased all over the town. ...


Keaton's silent films are characterized by clever visual gags and technical trickery. His writers included Clyde Bruckman and Jean Havez, but the most ingenious gags were often conceived by Keaton himself. The more adventurous ideas called for dangerous stunts, also performed by Keaton at great physical risk; during the railroad-water-tank scene in Sherlock Jr., Keaton broke his neck and did not realize it until years afterward. Comedy director Leo McCarey, recalling the freewheeling days of making slapstick comedies, said, "All of us tried to steal each other's gagmen. But we had no luck with Keaton, because he thought up his best gags himself and we couldn't steal him!" Clyde A. Bruckman (September 20, 1894 – January 4, 1955), was an American writer and director of comedy films during the late silent era as well as the early sound era of cinema. ... Leo McCarey (October 3, 1898 - July 5, 1969) was a movie director, screenwriter and producer. ... For other uses, see Slapstick (disambiguation). ...


Buster Keaton's most enduring feature-length films include Our Hospitality (1923), The Navigator (1924), Sherlock Jr. (1924), Steamboat Bill Jr. (1928), The Cameraman (1928), and most notably The General (1927). Our Hospitality is a silent comedy directed, produced, written by and starring Buster Keaton. ... The Navigator is a 1924 comedy directed by and starring Buster Keaton. ... Sherlock, Jr. ... Steamboat Bill Jr. ... The The Cameraman is a 1928 comedy starring Buster Keaton. ... The General is a 1927 silent comedy about a bumbling Confederate engineer (train driver) who pursues Union spies who steal his beloved locomotive, The General, which incidentally also carries his estranged girlfriend as well. ...


The General, set during the American Civil War, is considered his masterpiece, combining physical comedy with Keaton's love of trains. Keaton took his crew on picturesque locations and painstakingly re-enacted an actual wartime incident, complete with epic locomotive chase. This film was Keaton's proudest achievement, but was received poorly at the time. It was too dramatic for moviegoers expecting a lightweight comedy, and reviewers thought it was "fair" and noted it only had a "few laughs." The fact that the heroes of the story were the Confederate army may have also contributed to the film's unpopularity. Later audiences have given more favorable reviews, but in its day it was an expensive misfire, and Keaton was never entrusted with total control over his movies again. His distributor, United Artists, insisted on a production manager, who monitored expenses and interfered with certain story elements. Keaton endured this treatment for two more feature films, and then exchanged his independent setup for employment at Hollywood's biggest studio, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Combatants United States of America (Union) Confederate States of America (Confederacy) Commanders Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee Strength 2,200,000 1,064,000 Casualties 110,000 killed in action, 360,000 total dead, 275,200 wounded 93,000 killed in action, 258,000 total... For other uses, see Train (disambiguation). ... This article is about the film studio. ... For alternate meanings of MGM, see MGM (disambiguation). ...


Keaton's loss of independence as a filmmaker coincided with the coming of sound films and mounting personal problems, and his career in the early sound era was hurt as a result.


Marriages

Natalie Talmadge and Buster Keaton on their wedding day

In 1921, Buster Keaton married Natalie Talmadge, sister-in-law of his boss, Joseph Schenck, and sister of actresses Norma Talmadge and Constance Talmadge. During the first three years of the marriage, the couple had two sons, James (1922-2007) and Robert (1924-), but after the birth of Robert, the relationship began to suffer. Natalie Talmadge (1899-1969) was a silent film actress. ... Natalie Talmadge (1899-1969) was a silent film actress. ... Norma Talmadge Norma Talmadge (May 26, 1893 – December 24, 1957) was an American actress. ... Constance Talmadge in the 1910s Constance Talmadge (April 19, 1897-November 23, 1973) was a silent movie star born in Brooklyn, New York, USA, and was the sister of fellow actresses Norma Talmadge and Natalie Talmadge. ...


According to Keaton in his autobiography, Natalie turned him out of their bedroom and sent detectives to follow him to see who he was dating behind her back. Her extravagance was another factor in the breakdown of the marriage. During the 1920s, according to his autobiography, he dated actress Kathleen Key. When he ended the affair, Key flew into a rage and tore up his dressing room. After attempts at reconciliation, Natalie bitterly divorced Keaton in 1932, taking his entire fortune and refusing to allow any contact between Keaton and his sons, whose last name she had changed to Talmadge. Keaton was reunited with them about a decade later when his older son turned 18. The failure of his marriage, along with the loss of his independence as a filmmaker, led Keaton into a period of alcoholism. Kathleen Key Kathleen Key (April 1, 1903 - December 22, 1954) was an American actress who achieved a brief period of fame during the silent era. ...


During the height of his popularity, he spent $300,000 to build a 10,000-square-foot (930 m²) home in Beverly Hills. Later owners of the property were actors James Mason and Cary Grant. The "Italian Villa," as Keaton called it, can also be seen in the movie The Godfather, as well as in Keaton's own film Parlor, Bedroom and Bath. Keaton later said, "I took a lot of pratfalls to build that dump." It was James Mason who later discovered numerous cans of rare Keaton films in the house; the films were quickly transferred to safety film before the original silver nitrate prints further deteriorated. James Neville Mason (May 15, 1909 – July 27, 1984) was a three-time Academy Award nominated English actor who attained stardom in both British and American films. ... For the vocal coach, see Carrie Grant. ... This article is about the 1972 film. ... R-phrases , S-phrases , , , , Flash point non-flammable Supplementary data page Structure and properties n, εr, etc. ...


Keaton was at one point briefly institutionalized; however, according to the the TCM documentary 'So Funny it Hurt,' Keaton managed to escape a straitjacket with tricks learned during his vaudeville days. In 1933 he married his nurse, Mae Scriven, during an alcoholic binge about which he afterwards claimed to remember nothing (Keaton himself later called that period an "alcoholic blackout"). Scriven herself would later claim that she did not even know Keaton's real first name until after the marriage. When they divorced in 1936, it was again at great financial cost to Keaton.


In 1940, Keaton married Eleanor Norris, who was 23 years his junior. She has been credited with saving his life by stopping his heavy drinking, and helped to salvage his career. The marriage lasted until his death. Between 1947 and 1954, they appeared regularly in the Cirque Medrano in Paris as a double act. She came to know his routines so well that she often participated in them on TV revivals. This article is about the capital of France. ...


Sound era and television

Keaton signed with MGM in 1928, a business decision that he would later call the worst of his life. He realized too late that the studio system MGM represented would be more restrictive than the freedom he had known, severely limiting his creative input. He would have to adhere to dialogue-laden scripts and (for the first time) would be forced to use a stunt double during some of the more dangerous scenes, as MGM wanted badly to protect its investment. He also stopped directing, but continued to perform and made some of his most financially successful films for the studio. MGM tried teaming the laconic Keaton with the rambunctious Jimmy Durante in a series of movies including The Passionate Plumber, Speak Easily, and What! No Beer? Although the two comedians never quite meshed as a team, the films proved popular. For alternate meanings of MGM, see MGM (disambiguation). ... The studio system was a means of film production and distribution dominant in Hollywood from the early 1920s through the early 1950s. ... “Inka Dinka Doo” redirects here. ...


In the first Keaton pictures with sound, he and his fellow actors would shoot each scene three times: one in English, one in Spanish, and one in either French or German. This was done before dubbing became commonplace. The actors would memorize the foreign-language scripts a few lines at time and shoot immediately after. This is discussed in the TCM documentary Buster Keaton: So Funny it Hurt, with Keaton complaining about having to shoot lousy movies not just once, but three times. His stage name in Spanish markets was Pamplinas ("Nonsense"), and his nickname became Cara de palo ("Wooden face"). cineclasico.com (Spanish)


Keaton's last starring feature in America was What! No Beer? Behind the scenes, Keaton's world was in chaos, with divorce proceedings contributing to his alcoholism, which in turn caused production delays and unpleasant incidents at the studio. Keaton was so depleted during the filming of What! No Beer? that MGM released him, despite the film being a resounding hit. In 1934 Keaton accepted an offer to make an independent film in Paris, Le Roi des Champs-Élysées. During this period he made one other film in Europe, The Invader (released in America as An Old Spanish Custom in 1936).


Upon his return to Hollywood, he made a screen comeback in a series of 16 two-reel comedies for Educational Pictures. Most of these are simple visual comedies, with many of the gags supplied by Keaton himself. The high point in the Educational series is Grand Slam Opera, featuring Buster in his own screenplay as an amateur-hour contestant. When the series lapsed in 1937, Keaton returned to MGM as a gag writer, including the Marx Brothers films At the Circus (1939) and Go West (1940), and for Red Skelton. Educational Pictures (or Educational Film Exchanges, Inc. ... This article is about the comedian siblings. ... At the Circus is a 1939 Marx Brothers comedy film in which they save a circus from bankruptcy. ... Videotape jacket for Go West Go West (1940) was the 10th Marx Brothers comedy film, in which the three brothers, Groucho, Chico, and Harpo, head to the American West and attempt to unite a couple by ensuring that an evil railroad baron is thwarted. ... Richard Bernard Red Skelton (July 18, 1913 – September 17, 1997) was an American comedian whose greatest impact — in a career which began as a teen circus clown and graduated to vaudeville, Broadway, MGM films, and radio — began when he reached television stardom with The Red Skelton Show (NBC, 1951–1952...


In 1939, Columbia Pictures hired Keaton to star in two-reel comedies. The series ran for two years. The director was usually Jules White, whose emphasis on slapstick made most of these films resemble White's Three Stooges comedies. Keaton's personal favorite of the 10 Columbias was directed not by White but by Mack Sennett veteran Del Lord, Pest from the West (1939), a two-reel remake of Keaton's feature The Invader. Moviegoers and exhibitors welcomed Keaton's Columbia comedies, which were successful enough to be re-released again and again through the 1960s. The Columbia Pictures logo from 1993 to the present Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. ... Jules White (born Jules Weiss on 17 September 1900 in Budapest, Hungary, died 30 April 1985 in Van Nuys, California) was a movie director and producer of the silent film era. ... For other uses, see Slapstick (disambiguation). ... The Three Stooges were an American vaudeville and comedy act of the mid 20th century best known for their numerous short subject films. ... Mack Sennett (1880 - 1960) Mack Sennett (January 17, 1880 – November 5, 1960) was an innovator of slapstick comedy in film. ... Del Lord (October 7, 1894 - March 23, 1970) was a film director and actor best known as a director of Three Stooges films. ...


Keaton's personal life had stabilized with his 1940 marriage, and now he was taking life a little easier, abandoning Columbia for the less strenuous field of feature films. Throughout the 1940s Keaton played character roles in both "A" and "B" features. Critics rediscovered Keaton in 1949 and producers now hired him for bigger pictures. He guest-starred in such films as Sunset Boulevard (1950), Around the World in Eighty Days (1956), It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World (1963), and A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (1966). He appeared in Chaplin's Limelight (1952), recalling the vaudeville of The Playhouse. With the exception of Seeing Stars, a minor publicity film produced in 1922, Limelight was the only time in which the two giants of silent comedy would appear together on film. It has been suggested that Norma Desmond be merged into this article or section. ... Around the World in Eighty Days is a 1956 adventure film made by the Michael Todd Company and released by United Artists. ... Its a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World is an American motion picture directed by Stanley Kramer about the madcap pursuit of $350,000 of stolen cash by a diverse and colourful group of strangers. ... A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum is a 1966 musical comedy film, based on the stage musical with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and a book by Burt Shevelove and Larry Gelbart. ... Limelight is a 1952 movie written, directed by and starring Charles Chaplin, co-starring Claire Bloom, with a guest appearance by Buster Keaton. ... The Playhouse is a 1921 film written and directed by Buster Keaton. ...


Keaton had a successful series on Los Angeles television, The Buster Keaton Show (1950). An attempt to recreate the first series on film as Life with Buster Keaton (1951), which allowed it to be broadcast nationwide, was less well received, although veteran actress Marcia Mae Jones and gagman Clyde Bruckman made contributions. A theatrical feature film, The Misadventures of Buster Keaton, was fashioned from the series. Keaton said he cancelled the filmed series himself because he was unable to create enough fresh material to produce a new show each week. Marcia Mae Jones (1 August 1924 - 2 September 2007) was an American actress whose prolific career spanned 47 years. ... Clyde A. Bruckman (September 20, 1894 – January 4, 1955), was an American writer and director of comedy films during the late silent era as well as the early sound era of cinema. ...


Keaton also appeared on Ed Wynn's variety show. At the age of 55, he successfully recreated one of the stunts of his youth, in which he propped one foot onto a table, then swung the second foot up next to it, and held the awkward position in midair for a moment before crashing to the stage floor. I've Got a Secret host Garry Moore recalled, "I asked (Keaton) how he did all those falls, and he said, 'I'll show you'. He opened his jacket and he was all bruised. So that's how he did it — it hurt — but you had to care enough not to care." Ed Wynn (November 9, 1886 - June 19, 1966) was a popular United States entertainer, born Isaiah Edwin Leopold in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. ... Ive Got a Secret (abbreviated as IGAS) was a weekly panel game show produced by Mark Goodson and Bill Todman for CBS television and was created by Allan Sherman as essentially a knockoff of Whats My Line?. The original version of the show premiered in June 19, 1952... Garry Moore smoking as he often did while hosting Ive Got A Secret Garry Moore (January 31, 1915 – November 28, 1993) was born in Baltimore, Maryland as Thomas Garrison Morfit. ...


Keaton's silent films saw a revival in the 1950s and 1960s. In 1961 he starred in The Twilight Zone episode "Once Upon a Time", which included both silent and sound sequences. Keaton played time traveler Mulligan, who traveled from 1890 to 1960, then back, by means of a special helmet. Keaton also found steady work as an actor in TV commercials, including a popular series of silent ads for Simon Pure Beer in which he revisited some of the gags from his silent film days. The Twilight Zone is a television series created by Rod Serling. ... “Once Upon a Time” is an episode of the television series The Twilight Zone. ...


In 1960, Keaton returned to MGM for the final time, to participate in one of the numerous adaptations of Mark Twain's The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Much of the film was shot on location on the Sacramento River, which doubled for the Mississippi River in Twain's original book. Samuel Langhorne Clemens (November 30, 1835 – April 21, 1910),[1] better known by the pen name Mark Twain, was an American humanist,[2] humorist, satirist, lecturer and writer. ... Huckleberry Finn and Jim Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1885) by Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens) is commonly accounted as the first Great American Novel. ... The Sacramento River is the longest river in the U.S. state of California. ... For the river in Canada, see Mississippi River (Ontario). ...

Touring as King Sextimus in Once Upon A Mattress (1960)
Touring as King Sextimus in Once Upon A Mattress (1960)

In August 1960, Keaton accepted the role of mute King Sextimus The Silent in the national touring company of Once Upon A Mattress, already a successful Broadway musical. Eleanor Keaton was cast in the chorus, and during rehearsals she fielded questions directed at Buster, creating difficulties in communication. After a few days, Keaton warmed up to the rest of the cast with his "utterly delicious sense of humor", according to Fritzi Burr, who played opposite him as Queen Aggravaine. When the tour landed in Los Angeles, Keaton invited the entire cast and crew to a spaghetti party at his Woodland Hills home, and entertained them by singing vaudeville songs.[5] Once Upon a Mattress is a musical comedy that opened off-Broadway on May 11, 1959, and then moved to Broadway. ... Once Upon a Mattress is a musical comedy that opened off-Broadway on May 11, 1959, and then moved to Broadway. ...


At the age of 70, Keaton suggested a piece of physical comedy for his appearance in the 1965 movie Sergeant Deadhead, in which he ran past the end of a firehose into a six-foot-high flip and crash. When director Norman Taurog balked, expressing concerns for Keaton's health, Keaton said, "I won't hurt myself, Norm, I've done it for years!" Norman Taurog, (February 23, 1899 - April 7, 1981) was an American film director born in Chicago, Illinois. ...


Keaton starred in a short film called The Railrodder (1965) for the National Film Board of Canada. Wearing his traditional porkpie hat, he travelled from one end of Canada to the other on a motorized handcar, performing gags similar to those in films he made 50 years before. The film is also notable for being Keaton's last silent screen performance. The Railrodder was made in tandem with a behind-the-scenes documentary about Keaton's life and times, called Buster Keaton Rides Again — also made for the National Film Board. He played the central role in Samuel Beckett's Film (1965), directed by Alan Schneider. Keaton's last film appearance was in the musical farce A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (1966). He amazed the cast and crew by doing many of his own stunts in the film, although Thames Television said he did have a stunt double for some of his scenes. The Railrodder is a 1965 short comedy film released by the National Film Board of Canada and starring Buster Keaton in one of his final film roles (it was also his final silent film insomuch as the film contains no dialogue). ... The National Film Board of Canada (usually National Film Board or NFB) is a Canadian public filmmaking organization established to produce and distribute films that inform Canadians and promote Canada around the world. ... Samuel Barclay Beckett (13 April 1906 – 22 December 1989) was an Irish dramatist, novelist and poet. ... Film is a film written by Samuel Beckett, his only screenplay. ... Alan Schneider (?–1984) was a prolific director and mentor responsible for over 100 productions in the American theatre. ... A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum is a 1966 musical comedy film, based on the stage musical with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and a book by Burt Shevelove and Larry Gelbart. ...


Death

Keaton died of lung cancer on February 1, 1966, at the age of 70.[6] He was never told that he was terminally ill, thinking that he had bronchitis. Confined to a hospital in his final days, Keaton was restless and paced the room endlessly. In a documentary on his career, his widow Eleanor told Thames Television that Keaton played cards with friends the night before he died.[7] It was said that Keaton was buried with a rosary in one pocket and a deck of cards in the other, preparing him for both eternal possibilities. Eleanor herself died in 1998, also of lung cancer. Lung cancer is a disease of uncontrolled cell growth in tissues of the lung. ... is the 32nd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1966 (MCMLXVI) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display full calendar) of the 1966 Gregorian calendar. ... This article is about incurable disease. ... Thames Television was a franchise holder of the British ITV television network, serving London on weekdays between 1968 and 1992. ...


Legacy and contribution

Buster Keaton, Charlie Chaplin and Harold Lloyd are remembered as the great comic innovators of the silent era. Keaton enjoyed Lloyd's films highly and often praised Chaplin.[8] Charles Chaplin redirects here. ... Harold Clayton Lloyd (April 20, 1893 – March 8, 1971) was an American film actor and director, most famous for his silent comedies. ...


Keaton has two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame: 6619 Hollywood Boulevard (for motion pictures); and 6321 Hollywood Boulevard (for television). Buskers perform on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. ...


A 1957 film biography, The Buster Keaton Story,[9] starred Donald O'Connor as Keaton. The screenplay was vaguely based on his life, but contained many factual errors and merged his three wives into one character. Most of the story centered on his drinking problem, in the producer's attempt to imitate the success of I'll Cry Tomorrow, a sudsy biography about another alcoholic celebrity (Lillian Roth). The 1987 documentary Buster Keaton: A Hard Act to Follow,[10] which won 2 Emmy Awards, is considered a much more accurate telling of Keaton’s story. Donald David Dixon Ronald O’Connor (August 28, 1925 – September 27, 2003) was an American dancer, singer, and actor who came to fame in a series of movies in which he co-starred alternately with Gloria Jean, Peggy Ryan, and Francis the Talking Mule. ... Lillian Roth (December 13, 1910 - May 12, 1980) was an American singer and actress. ... An Emmy Award. ...


Porkpie hats

Keaton seated, in costume, wearing his signature porkpie hat
Keaton seated, in costume, wearing his signature porkpie hat

Keaton designed and fabricated many of his own porkpie hats during his career. In 1964, he told an interviewer that in making the porkpie he started with a good Stetson hat and cut it down, stiffening the brim with concentrated sugar water. The hats were often destroyed during Keaton's wild movie antics; some were given away as gifts and some were snatched by souvenir hunters. Keaton said he was lucky if he used only six hats in making a film. Keaton estimated that he and his wife Eleanor made thousands of the hats during his career.[11] A pork pie hat is a felt hat, similer to a Trilby, dating from the middle 19th century, much the same as a fedora, but with a flattened top. ... The Stetson Cavalry Hat For the university, see Stetson University. ...


Filmography

Main article: Buster Keaton filmography

Notes

  1. ^ Greatest Film Directors and Their Best Films
  2. ^ bfi : Sight & Sound : Top ten. Retrieved on 2005-11-18.
  3. ^ Telescope: Deadpan an interview with Buster Keaton, 1964 interview of Buster and Eleanor Keaton by Fletcher Markle for the CBC
  4. ^ [1] Keaton's biography at IMDB, the Internet Movie Database
  5. ^ Meade, Marion (1997). Buster Keaton: Cut to the Chase. Da Capo, 284. ISBN 0306808021. 
  6. ^ Buster Keaton, 70, Dies on Coast; Poker-Faced Comedian of Films
  7. ^ Turner Classic Movies
  8. ^ "My Wonderful World of Slapstick"
  9. ^ The Buster Keaton Story at IMDB
  10. ^ Buster Keaton: A Hard Act to Follow at IMDB
  11. ^ How To Make A Porkpie Hat Buster Keaton, interviewed in 1964 at the Movieland Wax Museum. Henry Gris

Year 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 322nd day of the year (323rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Radio-Canada redirects here. ... The Internet Movie Database (IMDb) [1] is an online database of information about actors, movies, television shows, television stars and video games. ... The Internet Movie Database (IMDb) [1] is an online database of information about actors, movies, television shows, television stars and video games. ...

Further reading

  • Blesh, Rudi (1966). Keaton. The Macmillan Company. ISBN 0-02-511570-7. 
  • Keaton, Buster; Samuels, Charles (1982). My Wonderful World Of Slapstick. Da Capo Press. ISBN 0-306-80178-7. 
  • Keaton, Eleanor (2001). Buster Keaton Remembered. Harry N. Abrams, Inc.. ISBN 0-8109-4227-5. 
  • Kerr, Walter (1975). The Silent Clowns. Alfred A. Knopf. ISBN 0-394-46907-0. 
  • Knopf, Robert (1999). The Theater and Cinema of Buster Keaton. Princeton University Press. ISBN 0-69100-442-0. 
  • McPherson, Edward (2005). Buster Keaton: Tempest in a Flat Hat. Newmarket Press. ISBN 1-55704-665-4. 

Harry N. Abrams, Inc. ... Colophon of the publisher Alfred A. Knopf. ...

See also

Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to:
Buster Keaton

Camille Keaton (born July 20, 1947 in Atlanta, Georgia) is an American actress and the last wife of film producer Sidney Luft. ... Joe Keaton (July 6, 1867 – January 13, 1946) was an American silent film and film actor, was also the father of actor Buster Keaton. ... Natalie Talmadge (1899-1969) was a silent film actress. ... This is a list of United States comedy films. ... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Wikiquote is one of a family of wiki-based projects run by the Wikimedia Foundation, running on MediaWiki software. ...

External links

Persondata
NAME Keaton, Joseph Frank, Jr.
ALTERNATIVE NAMES Keaton, Buster (professional name)
SHORT DESCRIPTION Actor and filmmaker
DATE OF BIRTH October 4, 1895
PLACE OF BIRTH Piqua, Kansas
DATE OF DEATH February 1, 1966
PLACE OF DEATH Woodland Hills, California

For the in-memory database management system, see In-memory database. ... Turner Classic Movies (TCM) is a cable television channel featuring commercial-free classic movies, mostly from the Turner Entertainment and Warner Bros. ... Turner Classic Movies (TCM) is a cable television channel featuring commercial-free classic movies, mostly from the Turner Entertainment and Warner Bros. ... Alma Mater Columbia University is a private university in the United States and a member of the Ivy League. ... TIME redirects here. ... Roscoe Conkling Arbuckle, also known as Fatty Arbuckle (March 24, 1887 – June 29, 1933), was an American silent film comedian, director, and screenwriter. ... The Butcher Boy is a 1917 short comedy film starring Roscoe Fatty Arbuckle and Buster Keaton in his first film appearance. ... The Rough House is a 1917 short comedy film directed by and starring Fatty Arbuckle and Buster Keaton. ... His Wedding Night is a 1917 short comedy film directed by and starring Fatty Arbuckle. ... Oh Doctor! is a 1917 short comedy film directed by and starring Fatty Arbuckle. ... Coney Island (1917), also known as Fatty at Coney Island, is a short silent film comedy written and directed by Roscoe Fatty Arbuckle, and starring Arbuckle and Buster Keaton. ... A Country Hero is a 1917 short comedy film directed by and starring Fatty Arbuckle. ... Out West is a 1918 short comedy film, a satire on contemporary westerns, starring Roscoe Fatty Arbuckle, Buster Keaton, and Al St. ... The Bell Boy is a a short film produced and released in 1918 by the Comique film company. ... Moonshine is a 1918 short comedy film directed by and starring Fatty Arbuckle. ... Good-Night, Nurse! is a 1918 short comedy film directed by Roscoe Arbuckle. ... The Cook is a 1918 silent film staring Roscoe Fatty Arbuckle and Buster Keaton. ... For the 1917 film starring Oliver Hardy, see Back Stage (1917 film). ... The Hayseed is a 1919 short comedy film directed by and starring Fatty Arbuckle. ... The Garage (1919) was a short comedy film starring Buster Keaton and Roscoe Fatty Arbuckle. ... One Week is a 1920 short comedy film starring comedian Buster Keaton It was written and directed by Keaton and Edward F. Cline. ... The Scarecrow is a 1920 short comedy film starring comedian Buster Keaton. ... Neighbors is a 1920 short comedy film written, directed by and starring comedian Buster Keaton. ... The Haunted House is a 1921 short comedy film starring comedian Buster Keaton. ... Hard Luck is a 1921 short comedy film starring comedian Buster Keaton. ... The High Sign is a 1921 short comedy film starring comedian Buster Keaton. ... The Goat is a 1921 short comedy film written, directed by and starring comedian Buster Keaton. ... The Playhouse is a 1921 film written and directed by Buster Keaton. ... The Paleface is a Buster Keaton two-reeler comedy film made in 1922 in which he unwittingly wanders into an Indian tribe while chasing a butterfly. ... Cops is a 1922 comedy short film which tells the story of a young man (Buster Keaton) who accidentally gets on the bad side of a citys entire police force, and is chased all over the town. ... The Love Nest is a 1923 short comedy silent film written by, directed by and starring Buster Keaton. ... Educational Pictures (or Educational Film Exchanges, Inc. ... Love Nest on Wheels is a 1937 film directed by Buster Keaton and Charles Lamont. ... The Columbia Pictures logo from 1993 to the present Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. ... Pest from the West is a 1939 short comedy film, starring Buster Keaton. ... Mooching Through Georgia is a comedy film starring Buster Keaton, released by Columbia Pictures on August 11, 1939. ... Film is a film written by Samuel Beckett, his only screenplay. ... The Railrodder is a 1965 short comedy film released by the National Film Board of Canada and starring Buster Keaton in one of his final film roles (it was also his final silent film insomuch as the film contains no dialogue). ... The Scribe is an industrial film produced by The Construction Safety Association of Ontario Canada. ... Three Ages is a 1923 black and white American feature-length silent comedy film starring comedian Buster Keaton and Wallace Beery. ... Our Hospitality is a silent comedy directed, produced, written by and starring Buster Keaton. ... Sherlock, Jr. ... The Navigator is a 1924 comedy directed by and starring Buster Keaton. ... Seven Chances is a 1925 comedy directed by and starring Buster Keaton. ... Go West (1925) was a silent movie starring Buster Keaton. ... Battling Butler is a 1926 comedy directed by and starring Buster Keaton. ... The General is a 1927 silent comedy about a bumbling Confederate engineer (train driver) who pursues Union spies who steal his beloved locomotive, The General, which incidentally also carries his estranged girlfriend as well. ... College is a 1927 comedy-drama film directed by James W.Horne, co-directed and starring Buster Keaton. ... Steamboat Bill Jr. ... The The Cameraman is a 1928 comedy starring Buster Keaton. ... Spite Marriage is an American 1929 silent comedy starring Buster Keaton and Dorothy Sebastian. ... Parlor, Bedroom and Bath is a comedy film starring Buster Keaton, released by Metro-Goldwyn Mayer in 1931. ... Le Roi des Champs-Élysées is a 1934 comedy starring Buster Keaton. ... The Invader is a comedy film, starring Buster Keaton, released in the United Kingdom in 1935. ... Boom in the Moon is a 1946 science fiction comedy film starring Buster Keaton. ... Buster Keaton Rides Again is a 1965 documentary film about the filming of Buster Keatons film The Railrodder, which was also released in 1965. ... The Hollywood Revue of 1929: One of the earliest ventures into the new talkie format of motion pictures, this film, directed by Charles Riesner for MGM, brought together some top acts in a two-hour vaudeville show hosted by Jack Benny. ... In the Good Old Summertime is a 1949 musical film directed by Robert Z. Leonard. ... Sunset Boulevard (also known as Sunset Blvd. ... Limelight is a 1952 film written, directed by and starring Charles Chaplin, co-starring Claire Bloom, with a guest appearance by Buster Keaton. ... Its a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World is an American motion picture directed by Stanley Kramer about the madcap pursuit of $350,000 of stolen cash by a diverse and colourful group of strangers. ... Hi! Youre car can speak <a href=http://immobilizer. ... This article or section is not written in the formal tone expected of an encyclopedia article. ... How to stuff a Wild Bikini is a 1965 Beach Party film. ... is the 277th day of the year (278th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1895 (MDCCCXCV) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Sunday of the 12-day-slower Julian calendar). ... Piqua is an area of Woodson County, Kansas. ... is the 32nd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1966 (MCMLXVI) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display full calendar) of the 1966 Gregorian calendar. ... Woodland Hills is a community within the City of Los Angeles. ...


  Results from FactBites:
 
Buster Keaton - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1597 words)
Keaton and Arbuckle became close friends, a bond that would never break, even after Arbuckle was embroiled in the scandal that cost him his career and his personal life.
Keaton lived to see the rediscovery of his great silent films in his later years, and his recognition as as one of the great geniuses of cinema.
Buster Keaton, Charlie Chaplin and Harold Lloyd are remembered as the great comic innovators of the silent era.
Buster Keaton - definition of Buster Keaton in Encyclopedia (1687 words)
Buster was born in a boarding house that was later destroyed by a tornado.
Keaton and Arbuckle became close friends, a bond that would never break — even after Arbuckle was embroiled in the "Fatty Arbuckle scandal" that cost him his career and his personal life.
Buster Keaton has two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and in 1994, he was honored with his image on a United States postage stamp designed by caricaturist Al Hirschfeld.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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