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Hollywood Legend Mickey Rooney Dead at 93


Mickey Rooney, who began as a child actor and spent eight decades in entertainment, died at 93 at home in Los Angeles on Sunday afternoon, the L.A. Times reports:

One of the most enduring performers in show business, he made his debut on the vaudeville stage in 1922 as a toddler and toured into his late 80s in a two-person stage show with Jan Chamberlin, his eighth wife. They were married in 1978 and later separated.

Jokes about his propensity to walk down the aisle were once a staple of pop culture. Even Rooney told them. "My marriage license reads, 'To whom it may concern,'" he chortled to The Times in 1981. The first and most famous of his wives was actress Ava Gardner, whom he married in 1942.

When the 90-year-old Rooney testified before Congress in 2011 about elder abuse, the actor said he spoke from personal experience. A family member who took and misused Rooney's money had left him powerless, he said.

Watch a reel on Rooney's career, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. Rooney was a very vocal opponent of gays rights and spoke often of preserving the "sanctity of marriage"---in fact, it was such a precious institution to him, he enjoyed it EIGHT TIMES.

    Posted by: Brick | Apr 7, 2014 7:48:18 AM

  2. He really was a legend, with the second-longest film career in cinema history (86 years).

    I was never a huge Rooney fan---he was so over-the-top and hyper in those old MGM pictures, it was exhausting to watch him. And I heard he wasn't exactly gay-friendly in real everyday life, which tempers my enthusiasm for him considerably.

    Still, he was so fond of, and such a good friend to, Garland for all those years. And that counts for something in my eyes, so may he rest in peace...

    Posted by: octobercountry | Apr 7, 2014 7:50:18 AM

  3. A true legend. RIP.

    Posted by: Matt27 | Apr 7, 2014 9:28:45 AM

  4. Dammit, was Rooney one of those Academy members who refused to watch or vote for "Brokeback Mountain" in '05? I'll have a lot less charitable view of him if so. (He still did stellar work onscreen and on TV, especially in the TV movie "Bill.")

    Posted by: Dback | Apr 7, 2014 9:57:21 AM

  5. He did wonders for Japanese / American relations.

    Posted by: MaryM | Apr 7, 2014 10:56:43 AM

  6. @MARYM - Hahahaha!!

    Posted by: Brick | Apr 7, 2014 11:07:41 AM

  7. I guess in the 1930s he was the Justin Bieber of his time...not as cute though, but not as foolish.

    He musta' been pretty good though in the love-making department--he got Ava Gardner to marry him. Ava didn't play, honey.

    Posted by: Derrick from Philly | Apr 7, 2014 12:40:13 PM

  8. I've seen Mr.Family Values(a.k.a. Mr. Eight Marriages) on Pat Robertson's anti-BGLT "The 700 Club" so I'm glad the old bigot is gone. Maybe Anita Bryant will be joining him in Hell soon.I can't believe any self-respecting member of our community would have anything nice to say about him.LEARN SOME HISTORY!!!

    Posted by: fed up | Apr 7, 2014 1:14:03 PM

  9. A remarkably talented actor. An entertainer par excellence. One of the last surviving stars of Hollywood's Golden Age. A legend.

    Goodbye Mickey Rooney. Rest in Peace.

    Posted by: Bryan | Apr 7, 2014 4:08:22 PM

  10. He was a talented and versatile performer and one of the true legends of classic Hollywood.

    Posted by: jarago | Apr 7, 2014 5:29:42 PM

  11. I was unaware before reading these comments that Rooney had homophobic views. As a young actor, he had a very large gay following; Christopher Isherwood writes about how he and other gay European men admired Rooney. In the Andy Hardy films, it became a joke (alluded to in one later picture) how he appeared shirtless in at least one extended scene in every movie. Several of those movies had not-so-hidden gay subtexts. See the book "We Boys Together: Teenagers in Love Before Girl-craziness" by Jeffery P. Dennis

    Posted by: Richard Grayson | Apr 7, 2014 7:33:56 PM

  12. I forgot to mention he was friends with Jerry Falwell who went to help poor Anita Bryant's Save The Children campaign back in the 1970's.I believe his good buddy said to the crowds(on more than 1 occasion) that "the gays would kill ya as they would look at ya".Some of you should google what Mickey's dear friend Jerry falwell had to say about BGLT's & other groups.It's all disgusting & any admiration of this bigot lover is equally so(he never once publicly denounced any of these gaybashers or publicly distanced himself from them).Out comedian Bob Smith is rumored to be unable to speak due to Lou Gehrig's disease.How about a updated story on him Towleroad instead of all these Fred Phelps & Mickey Rooneys.

    Posted by: fed up | Apr 8, 2014 12:12:58 AM

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