Sunday, April 26, 2009

Mae West: Tammany Young

In 1932, Tammany Young was in one motion picture with MAE WEST.
• • Born in New York City, Tammany Young [9 September 1886 — 26 April 1936] appeared on Broadway in "The Front Page" [1928] by Ben Hecht and "The New Yorkers" [1930] by Herbert Fields and Cole Porter. He acquired the rep of being a “good luck actor” by Broadway producers. Consequently, he was often cast in bit parts by the likes of the Shubert brothers, Jed Harris, and David Belasco as a way of attracting good luck to their productions. This high regard paid off and Alex Gard drew his likeness for Sardi's restaurant.
• • In Hollywood, Young started out in silent films and then was cast in talkies. Although frequently uncredited, he eventually appeared in over 100 movies with such stars as Mae West, Myrna Loy, Bing Crosby, Shirley Temple, and Judy Garland.
• • In "She Done Him Wrong," Tammany Young portrayed the colorful Chuck Connors, who had been a well-known figure on the Bowery. On Broadway, Mae West had cast Chuck Connors, Jr. in the role of Chuck Connors in "Diamond Lil" for an air of authenticity.
• • But he was known most notably for his role as the stooge (straight man) to W.C. Fields with whom he appeared in seven films: Sally of the Sawdust (1925), Six of a Kind (1934), You're Telling Me! (1934), The Old Fashioned Way (1934), It's a Gift (1934), Man on the Flying Trapeze (1935), and Poppy (1936).
• • Tammany Young also was an infamous gate crasher. By claiming to be an ice man, he worked his way into the 1921 Dempsey — Carpentier prize fight in New Jersey, for instance; in 1932 he found his way into the Los Angeles Olympics. These exploits often popped up in the columns of sportswriters who knew him.
• • During the month of April — — on 26 April 1936 — — Tammany Young died in his sleep in Hollywood at the age of 49. At the news of Young's untimely demise in California, W.C. Fields became severely depressed and stopped eating and sleeping. One wonders: did he also stop drinking while in mourning?
• • Speaking of April 26th, on that sunny date in 1926, "Sex" debuted on Broadway starring Mae West as Margy LaMont at Daly's 63rd Street Theatre.

• • Come up and see Mae every day online:
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• • Photo: • • Mae West • • 1932 • •
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Mae West.

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