Legendary Veteran Actor Mickey Rooney Has Passed Away at Age 93
by Ethan Anderton
April 7, 2014
Another one of the greats from the short history of Hollywood has left this world. The New York Times reports legendary veteran actor Mickey Rooney passed away at his home in North Hollywood on Sunday at age 93. Rooney was most recently seen in family comedies The Muppets and the Night at the Museum franchise, but his career in entertainment began at the tender age of two, as part of a family vaudeville act. But his career as a child star wouldn't begin until he landed a role as Mickey McGuire in a series of comedic short films that lasted for nine years. And it was that role which led to feature film fame.
Rooney's first feature film role came in the 1937 film A Family Affair alongside Lionel Barrymore. Rooney played a character named Andy Hardy, and would reprise that role in 14 more movies, some of which helped him become the biggest box office draw from 1939-1941 before he was even old enough to be considered an adult. One of those films, Love Finds Andy Hardy, even saw him sharing the screen with Wizard of Oz star Judy Garland and starred in films with her regularly. All that hard work also helped him pick up an Academy Juvenile Award in 1938, but shortly after he would join Garland in Babes in Arms, a role that landed him an Oscar nomination in 1940.
If you don't know much about Mickey Rooney, here's a great way to get acquainted with him:
Following a stint serving his country during World War II, Rooney went back to acting on film and television, starring in dozens of films including It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World, Breakfast at Tiffany's (one of his more infamous roles due to racial insensitivity in his portrayal of Japanese character I.Y. Yunioshi), Requiem for a Heavyweight, The Human Comedy, The Bold & The Brave and The Black Stallion, with the last three roles also landing him Oscar nominations. Rooney is also well-known for his role in Pete's Dragon, a Disney classic.
During his time as a feature film star, Rooney also appeared in numerous television shows like "The Fugitive" and "The Twilight Zone." But one of his more famous and and yearly celebrated roles came as the voice of Kris Kringle in the stop-motion animated holiday classic "Santa Claus is Comin' to Town," a role he would reprise for the follow-up "The Year Without a Santa Claus." Rooney also won an Emmy (and received several nominations) for his turn in the TV drama series "Bill."
More recently, Rooney tooks roles in some higher profile family fare like "Full House" and "The Happy Elf" not to mention feature film roles in Babe: Pig in the City, Night at the Museum and The Muppets. Rooney didn't return in Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian, but one of his final film roles will see him in the forthcoming sequel Night at the Museum 3, slated to hit theaters late this year. Rooney leaves behind a legacy of nearly 100 years that saw him on stage and screen for nearly his entire life. This is truly a great loss to the entertainment world and our hearts go out to his friends and family. Rest in peace.