Famous Like Me > Actor > K > Gene Kelly
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Profile of Gene Kelly
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|Also Know As:
|Date of Birth:
||23rd August 1912
|Place of Birth:
||Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA
Eugene Curran Kelly, August 23, 1912 - February 2, 1996 Born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, was an American dancer, actor, singer, director, producer, and choreographer. Kelly was known for his energetic and athletic dancing style, his good looks and the likeable characters which he played on screen.
Born in 1912, the third son of James Kelly, a phonograph salesman, and Harriet Curran who were both children of Irish Catholic immigrants. In 1940 he was given the leading role in Rodgers and Hart's Pal Joey, which brought him to national attention. During this period he also choreographed several hit plays, including the 1941 production of Best Foot Forward.
Kelly's first motion picture was For Me and My Gal (1942) with Judy Garland. He went on to make a number of classic musicals, including An American in Paris (1951) and Singin' in the Rain (1952).
His most notable moments on film include:
- Singing and dancing in the rain in a much-parodied scene from the film Singin' in the Rain; a scene he filmed while sick with a 103-degree fever.
- Dancing with a squeaky floorboard and a newspaper in Summer Stock.
- Dancing on roller skates in It's Always Fair Weather.
- Dancing with Jerry Mouse in Anchors Aweigh.
He was the first American to choreograph and stage a ballet in the Paris Opera.
Kelly was awarded a special Academy Award “in appreciation of his versatility as an actor, singer, director and dancer, and specifically for his brilliant achievements in the art of choreography on film” in 1951 and reawarded in 1984's Academy Awards due to a fire which burned down his home in the previous year.
Kelly was awarded the Légion d'honneur by the French government in 1960. He also received the Life Achievement Award from American Film Institute in 1985.
Kelly died on February 2, 1996, in Beverly Hills, California, after suffering two strokes, at the age of 83.
Kelly married three times:
- Betsy Blair (1940–1957) (one child, Kerry)
- Jeanne Coyne (1960–1973) (two children, Bridget and Tim)
- Patricia Ward (1990–1996)
The Gene Kelly Awards, given annually to high school musicals in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, are named in his honor.
In 2005, Volkswagen used Gene Kelly's as part of their Golf GTi promotion. The television clip featured a partly CGI version of Kelly breakdancing to a new version of "Singin' in the Rain", remixed by Mint Royale. The tagline was, "The original, updated."
- "If Fred Astaire is the Cary Grant of dance, I'm the Marlon Brando." — Gene Kelly
- Coquelico (Producer), Feb 22, 1979 - Apr 1, 1979
- Flower Drum Song (Director), Dec 1, 1958 - May 7, 1960
- Best Foot Forward (Choreographer), Oct 1, 1941 - Jul 4, 1942
- Pal Joey (Performer), Dec 25, 1940 - Nov 29, 1941
- The Time of Your Life (Choreographer, Performer), Sep 23, 1940 - Oct 19, 1940
- The Time of Your Life (Performer), Oct 25, 1939 - Apr 6, 1940
- One For the Money (Performer), Feb 4, 1939 - May 27, 1939
- Leave It to Me! (Performer), Nov 9, 1938 - Jul 15, 1939
- For Me and My Gal MGM, 1942
- Pilot #5 MGM, 1943
- Du Barry Was a Lady MGM, 1943
- Thousands Cheer MGM, 1943
- The Cross of Lorraine MGM, 1943
- Cover Girl Columbia, 1944 (also choreographer)
- Christmas Holiday Universal, 1944
- Anchors Aweigh MGM, 1945 (also choreographer)
- Ziegfeld Follies MGM, 1946
- Living in a Big Way MGM, 1947
- The Pirate MGM, 1948
- The Three Musketeers MGM, 1948
- Words and Music MGM, 1948
- Take Me Out to the Ball Game MGM, 1949 (also writer)
- On the Town MGM, 1949 (also director)
- Black Hand MGM, 1950
- Summer Stock MGM, 1950
- An American in Paris MGM, 1951 (also choreographer)
- It's a Big Country MGM, 1951
- Council of Europe MSA short subject, 1952
- Love is Better Than Ever MGM, 1952
- Singin' in the Rain MGM, 1952 (also director and choreographer)
- The Devil Makes Three MGM, 1952
- Brigadoon MGM, 1954
- Crest of the Wave MGM, 1954
- 1955 Motion Picture Theatre Celebration MGM short subject, 1955
- It's Always Fair Weather MGM, 1955 (also director)
- The Magic Lamp MGM short subject, 1956
- Invitation to the Dance MGM, 1956 (also director and writer)
- The Happy Road MGM, 1957 (also director and producer)
- Les Girls MGM, 1957
- Marjorie Morningstar Warner Bros., 1958
- The Tunnel of Love MGM, 1958 (director)
- Inherit the Wind United Artists, 1960
- Let's Make Love 20th Century-Fox, 1960
- Gigot 20th Century-Fox, 1962 (director)
- What a Way to Go! 20th Century-Fox, 1964
- The Young Girls of Rochefort Warner Bros., 1967
- A Guide for the Married Man 20th Century-Fox, 1967 (director)
- Hello, Dolly! 20th Century-Fox, 1969 (director)
- The Cheyenne Social Club National General, 1970 (director and producer)
- 40 Carats Columbia, 1973
- Just One More Time MGM short subject, 1974
- That's Entertainment! MGM, 1974
- The Lion Roars Again MGM short subject, 1975
- That's Entertainment, Part II MGM, 1976 (also director)
- Viva Knievel! Warner Bros., 1977
- Xanadu Universal, 1980
- Reporters Pari Films documentary, 1981
- That's Dancing! MGM, 1985
- The Young Girls Turn 25 Cine Tamaris documentary, 1993
- That's Entertainment! III MGM, 1994
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