Sunday afternoon America lost a silver screen legend, Mickey Rooney. Rooney the original Hardy Boy has more than 200 film credits. He is most remembered for playing MGM’s beloved Andy Hardy. Rooney died Sunday afternoon in his North Hollywood home surrounded by family, he was 93.
Rooney spent nearly his entire life in show business and had been ill for a long time. He teamed up with the incomparable Judy Garland in the 1939 film “Babes in Arms”. He was born in Brooklyn, NY on September 23, 1920. His parents took him on stage at the tender age of 17 in a vaudeville act. His first film credit was “Not to Be Trusted” released in 1926.
According to CNN, Rooney had three films in the works at the time of his death. One of the films in the process of being made is “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” with Margaret O’Brien. Rooney just completed his last film with Ben Stiller in the latest installment of “Night at the Museum”.
His son Mark Rooney told CNN, "He led a full life but did not have enough time to finish all he had planned to do. He had the time of his life and the utmost respect for the cast and crew”.
Rooney separated from his wife, Jan Chamberlain, two years ago. He moved in with his son and daughter in law. Rooney played the Andy Hardy role in the 1930’s and the 1940’s. Rooney’s private life was not always as smooth as his on screen personas would indicate. He married eight times. His first marriage was to Ava Gardner and only lasted a year.
He married an Alabama beauty queen in 1944 and his third marriage was to Martha Vickers. Rooney reportedly loved horseracing and frequently spent his earnings at the track. Over the years he earned an Oscar nomination for his role in “The Black Stallion”. He also earned rave reviews for his Broadway role in “Sugar Babies”.