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An Overview

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From your debut film feature Soup come Nuts in 1930, to their swan tune Kook's tour in 1970, The three Stooges enthralled the the town hall public through their unusual brand of slapstick comedic mayhem and off-the-wall verbal antics. In all, the 3 Stooges together a team made end 200 appearances in quick films and full-length feature films, not counting countless television appearances. Throughout their heyday in the 1930s and also 1940s, The 3 Stooges, consisting of the lover Curly, were the emperors of the comedy short. The 3 Stooges brand of comedy is together timeless and also funny now as that was once it was an initial shown come theater-going patrons the the Depression Era.

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There have to be something Moe

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Moses Horwitz was born in Brooklyn, brand-new York, ~ above June 19, 1897. "Moe" to be the fourth of 5 sons born to Solomon and also Jennie Horwitz. Cultivation up, Moe and also his older brothers Shemp spent lot of your time top top the beach at Coney Island performing and also clowning about with their friends. Moe knew at very early age the he wanted a life in display business and also got his start in 1909 to run errands for actors at brand-new York's Vitagraph Movie Company. He also recalled being cast in a couple of short films for Vitagraph in the at an early stage 1910s. Mid-1910s, Moe left home for a couple years and also worked on a Mississippi showboat and also in mid-western vaudeville shows. By the end of the decade, Moe and also Shemp had taken your act come vaudeville, laying the groundwork for a effective career to follow.

Fine and also Dandy

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Louis Feinberg was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on October 5, 1902. Prefer Moe, the too began performing at an early age, and his first love to be the violin which the learned come play as a kid to combine his arm after burn it v acid in his father's jewelry shop. Together he was farming up, that performed in a number of amateur night competitions and began to take it an interest in comedy. Louis adopted the stage name Larry Fine and also made the run to the vaudeville phase in 1921, later creating an act v his future wife Mabel.

The Youngest One in Curls

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Jerome Lester "Curly" Horwitz to be born in Brooklyn, brand-new York on October 22, 1903. Since he to be the baby of the family, Curly was actually known as "Babe" while cultivation up. Babe idolized his enlarge brothers Moe and also Shemp for the method they can attract attention and also excitement with their jokes, gags and also unparalleled humor. It seems tough to believe now, however as a youngster, Babe was actually rather shy and also didn't appear to have actually the very same yearning to live in the spotlight the his brothers did. Babe was additionally the Romeo the the family, as his wavy brown hair and demure personality made the the object of many a girl's attention.

Shempagne

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Samuel Horwitz was born in Brooklyn, brand-new York, on march 11, 1895, the 3rd eldest the the five Horwitz brothers, recognized as 'Shemp' due his mom Jennie's special Lithuanian accent. If his younger brother Moe early channeled his energy into a love of the movies and stage, Shemp to be the brother that was frequently getting himself right into devilment, exasperating his parents once not joining Moe for good times at Coney Island. Equally adept at performing prefer Moe, Shemp came later to the realization and also joined his brothers in the late 1910s because that a vaudeville act, and also a few years later on they discovered a course to success by joining the action of their friend Ted Healy.

The Ted Healy Days

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While Ted Healy was appearing in brand-new York in 1923, Moe ran right into his childhood girlfriend who, with wife Betty, was wowing audience on the vaudeville circuit v the stage revue Syncopated Toes. Moe and later Shemp join Healy's act as stooges because that a couple sketches, however each left by mid-1925 because that married life. Ted & Betty i graduated to Broadway for The Earl Carroll Vanities in 1925, however after number of months they relaunched your own show with stooge Lou Warren, and then were rejoined through Shemp. Hitting the Broadway phase again, an initial in 1926 because that the Shuberts' Passing Show, the Healys co-starred with Phil Baker in A Night in Spain in early 1927 for a 2-year operation which included a nationwide tour. Ted expanded his stooge roster for Spain to incorporate Shemp, Lou, Moody Braun and Bobby Pinkus. Larry entered the story in march 1928 throughout Spain's 4-month operation in Chicago once Ted and Shemp caught his nightclub act and were instantly impressed by his dancing, and also most importantly, his humor. By Spain's closeup of the door in December 1928, Shemp and Larry to be Ted's optimal stooges. During Spain, Ted & Betty likewise continued to job-related a solo action in nightclubs, but the pair split in late 1928, setup the stage for another evolution in the stooges. Ted signed come co-star in the Shuberts' 1929 Broadway show A Night in Venice. Shemp and also Larry rejoined, add to newcomer Fred Sanborn... And Moe Howard returned after a 3+ year absence! through Betty gone, Ted modification his solo act come spotlight his stooges, and also "Ted Healy & His southerly Gentlemen," aka "Ted Healy & His Racketeers," functioned vaudeville, nightclubs and also even radio during Venice's run. After illustration rave reviews and Venice's closure, the team was signed through Fox movies in spring 1930 to do their first motion picture, Soup come Nuts. The Stooges stole the show and also left Healy to go solo for the next two years.

The Stooges room Born

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Moe, Larry & Shemp toured top top the Publix and also RKO theatre circuits as "Howard, fine & Howard," aka "Three lost Soles," from respectable 1930 to July 1932 to busy however mixed results. In 1931 they carried on Jack Walsh as a straightman, allowing them come rework few of the routines they had done earlier with Healy. Ted remained busy ~ above Broadway and touring co-starring in Billy Rose's crazy Quilt v Fanny Brice, Phil Baker, and also assisted by three brand-new stooges, Mousie Garner, Jack wolf & prick Hakins. Healy let go the chemistry he had with the Howards and Fine, and convinced our three boys to rejoin that in August 1932. Shemp left after just a couple weeks because that solo phase opportunities due to issues with Ted Healy, and would later on go ~ above to appear in a variety of films and shorts in the following 14 years, notably his 1930s job-related at Brooklyn's Vitaphone Studios, and 1940s work-related at Universal and also Columbia Studios. The immediate replacement for Shemp was his and also Moe's younger brother Jerome who had actually been tagging along with "Howard, fine & Howard" for some time, and also knew the plot inside and out. However, Healy wasn't impressed, saying that the handsome young male with thick, brown hair wasn't visually funny. In response, Jerome checked out a local barber shop and shaved every critical hair turn off of his head. The newly named "Curly" was for this reason welcomed come the group. Only a main after Shemp's departure, the revised line-up that Healy through Moe, Larry & Curly premiered at Cleveland's RKO palace on respectable 27, 1932, and also the roadway to stardom suddenly came to be much clearer.

Out of the Shadows and also into the Spotlight

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"Ted Healy with Howard, fine & Howard" continued in stage performances till the spring of 1933, as soon as Hollywood and also MGM came calling. The team made a variety of films in 1933 - at an early stage 1934. Amongst them were Dancing Lady with Joan Crawford and also Clark Gable, Hollywood Party with Jimmy Durante and also Laurel & Hardy, Meet the Baron through Durante, Jack Pearl and also Edna may Oliver, and starring in number of shorts like Beer and also Pretzels and Hello Pop. The was throughout this time the "Stooges" and "Three Stooges" became component of the act's official name, and "Howard, well & Howard" was phased out. However, also though the Stooges were functioning steadily ~ above both stage and screen, the was evident that they were ready to rest from the zero of Ted Healy and take their ar in the spotlight. Thus, in in march 1934 the 2 parties make an amicable decision to part ways, paving the method for the three Stooges to acquire headline status. Quickly afterward, the team was signed by Columbia images to star in a variety of two-reel comedies (approximately 16-18 minute long). Their difficult work had paid off; the three Stooges were currently the main attraction.

The Stooge come on the Scene

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The very very first Three Stooges brief for Columbia was entitled woman Haters and also was shot in march of 1934. The short was one in a collection of "Musical Novelties" and also was not initially written specifically for the Stooges. The group's contract called for lock to be signed to a long-term deal if the Columbia executives preferred the very first two-reeler. The Columbia executives were originally indifferent, yet after making beat Drunks the Stooges to be signed come a seven year transaction worth a full of $60,000 per year. Under the agreement, the team was to movie 8 two-reel comedies every year. During their days with Healy, every made only around $5,000 a year.

The gold Age

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Together, Moe, Larry and Curly made 97 shorts for Columbia images in the years 1934 to 1946. Throughout this period, the three Stooges came to be one of the ideal loved comedy groups of all time. Amongst the highlights of this period are 1934's punch Drunks, in i beg your pardon Curly i do not care a champion prize-fighter whenever the hears the track "Pop walk the Weasel." Also, there's 1940's you Nazty Spy!, a takeoff top top the German 3rd Reich that features Moe (in his all-time favourite role) as the dictator the Moronica. Various other well-loved shorts include Hoi PolloiA plumbing We will certainly Go, Violent Is words For Curly, Micro-Phonies, Three little Beers, Disorder in the Court, They Stooge come Conga, An pains in Every Stake and many more. In addition to your film work, the group ongoing to job-related on stage during their off weeks and also actually make a an excellent deal of your income throughout these months. Together it operated out, their film workload to be a cumulative total of 6 come 7 weeks every year, through each brief given a production period of 4 work plus some restricted pre-production participation. Phase appearances took up the bulk of their time, with an mean of 20 weeks every year. 1939 and 1940 to be high marks, through six and also seven months respectively invested touring for the stage. 1939 is notable for including five mainly in England, Ireland and also Scotland, plus three months co-starring on Broadway in The George White Scandals.

The finish of an Era

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By the mid 1940's, Curly's health started to deteriorate because of years that drinking, overeating and also late nights; negative habits that increased when he and also wife Elaine divorced in 1940. In beforehand 1945, he suffered the very first of a cable of strokes the robbed him of his energy. After some time off, the Stooges restarted their job-related at Columbia, and they to be able to limit their job-related to only 22 days before the Columbia cameras in 1945. V it all, Curly ongoing to take on outside projects choose Swing Parade the 1946 because that Monogram Studios, and a grueling two-month an individual appearance tourism in late 1945 that turned a sick man right into a deathly ill man. That tour additionally included one ill-advised, short-lived marriage to a golddigger who turned him right into an emotionally wreck. When the Stooges returned residence in mid-November 1945, Curly's health was irrevocably ruined. Resuming production at Columbia in late January 1946, the became apparent that he short the toughness to perform lot of the physical comedy that had been his specialty. Return the three did not tour in ~ this time, they ongoing to book an individual appearances in the L.A. Area, e.g., a week at the Orpheum theater in February. In may 1946, during the filming the Half-Wits Holiday, Curly suffered a major stroke top top the set, properly ending his tenure with the 3 Stooges. Can not to continue, Curly retired to live through his fourth wife Valerie (m. July 1947) and also his daughter Janie (b. 1948). He live peacefully in retirement because that approximately 3 years. Late in 1949 he suffered another serious stroke, and his health progressively worsened till he passed away on January 18, 1952.

The last Curtain? Nope!

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After Curly left the group, his brother Shemp returned to the act. Shemp appeared in 77 shorts with the Stooges, starting with 1947's Fright Night. The Shemp era was regularly dismissed in prior years, however time and also comedy gems choose Brideless Groom, Squareheads that the ring Table, Three Arabian Nuts, Studio Stoops and Goof top top the Roof have earned this period the respect the deserves. Shemp provided the team through a new spark that had been lacking with Curly's illness. Curly did return for a cameo with Moe, Larry & Shemp, together a snoring train passenger in 1947's Hold the Lion! The Stooges also came come TV in ~ this time, with appearances on Milton Berle's Texaco Star Theater, The open minded Sinatra Show, and also Ed Wynn's Camel Comedy Caravan. The first few years v Shemp likewise remained busy with personal appearances, yet that venue dried up quickly as the movie palaces closeup of the door one after an additional in the post-war economy. A vegas attempt in 1953 failed, and also the act found itself mostly unemployed conserve for a shortened filming schedule at Columbia as result of stock clip remakes... In 1955, the boys operated only 9 days at the studio. Shemp died unexpectedly on November 22, 1955. 

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After losing his second brother, Moe seriously thought about retiring native the act. However, a couple years still stayed on their contract through Columbia. The group decided to enlist comedy veteran Joe Besser as the 3rd Stooge, and he showed up with the team in 16 shorts until their contract was abruptly terminated in December 1957. Happen on Moe's idea to carry out some personal appearances, Besser left the team a couple of weeks later to remain home and care for his ill wife. Joe retained busy v his own film work-related like 1959's Say One because that Me v Bing Crosby, Robert Wagner and also Debbie Reynolds, 1960s TV popularity as co-star the The Joey Bishop Show, guest shots on various other series, and a brand-new career in the 1970s doing computer animation voiceovers. Joe retirement in the early 1980s.

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Buoyed through the September 1958 television release of 78 Three Stooges shorts, the group enjoyed a revival in popularity, mostly with kids due to the films showing up on childrens programs. Through the end of 1959 every 190 shorts were distributed for TV. With burlesque veteran Joe DeRita (as "Curly Joe") now in location as the third Stooge, the group likewise found chin TV darlings in prime-time through appearances ~ above programs like The Steve Allen Show and The Ed Sullivan Show. They signed with Columbia in 1959 to star in Have Rocket -- will certainly Travel, and starred in four more attributes for Columbia with 1965, plus 20th Century-Fox's Technicolor Snow White and also the three Stooges in 1961. In 1960 Columbia produced a compilation attribute entitled Stop! Look! and also Laugh!, which utilized scenes from numerous of the Curly Howard shorts. Because that 1965's The Outlaws Is Coming, plenty of of the TV hosts that screened their movies were rewarded with functions as the "outlaws." 1965 likewise saw the TV relax of your cartoon collection The brand-new 3 Stooges. The team developed its own firm in 1959, which managed an to explode of licensed 3 Stooges merchandise with a wide selection of toys and also games, add to trading cards, color books and comic books. The latter half of the 1960s things slowed down substantially with alters in society attitudes, brand-new fads, the boys' kid audience growing up, and the trio's ages. Yet, the Stooges remained energetic with various television and an individual appearances till Larry's stroke throughout the filming the Kook's tourism in beforehand January 1970. Moe and Larry both passed away in 1975. Joe Besser passed far in 1988, and Joe DeRita, the last enduring Stooge, passed away in 1993.

The rest of Ted's Story

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Ted Healy had a effective film career after he and Stooges split in 1934, appearing in a number of films because that MGM and also being loaned to both Warner Brothers and 20th Century Fox. Some of his influential films incorporate Operator 13 (1934) with Gary Cooper & Marion Davies, Mad Love (1935) with Peter Lorre, San Francisco (1936) with Clark Gable, Jeanette mcdonald s & Spencer Tracy, Reckless (1935) with Jean Harlow & wilhelm Powell, It's in the Air (1935) v Jack Benny, Speed (1936) through Jimmy Stewart, Man the the People (1937) with Thomas Mitchell & Joseph Calleia, Love Is a Headache (1938) through Mickey Rooney & Franchot Tone, and Hollywood Hotel (1938) with dick Powell & Benny Goodman. Ted didn't leaving stooge-ing entirely, placing together a brand-new trio for scenes in San Francisco, which to be unfortunately cut in the editing and enhancing room. In 1937, he rejoined with previous stooges Paul 'Mousie' Garner and also Dick Hakins, in addition to Sammy Glasser (aka Sammy Wolfe) for some well-received radio appearances. This lineup was scheduled to take over radio hosting duties on the MGM/Maxwell home variety collection Good News, and also they were actors for the Warner Bros.' musical Golddiggers in Paris. Yet tragically, Ted's life was cut quick at the period of 41 in December 1937. Ted didn't know he to be ill v kidney nephritis and cirhossis that the liver once he go on a celebratory drinking binge after the bear of his son. After a pair nightclub fights, that returned home the next morning, lapsed into a coma once his kidney shut down, and Ted passed away hours later on from heart failure. Contradictory to legend, his struggle injuries that a cut over his eye and also a couple of bruises walk not add to his death, lock were just fuel for tabloid stories. His career to be going really well, and years that future entertaining were i m so sad lost.

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The legacy Lives On

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The popularity of the three Stooges stays on come this day. Although they never received the an essential acceptance that other comics of their day enjoyed, few images indigenous the 1930s and also 1940s have stood the test of time and the classic "nyuk-nyuk-nyuks" and "woob-woob-woobs" that the three Stooges. Reruns are now seen all throughout the country, allowing more and much more younger fans to experience the wackiness the Stoogemania. The 3 Stooges will forever it is in remembered as one of the true pioneering teams in the ar of comedy.

 

 

Written by Giff me documents fill-em!, respectable 30, 2009; additional text by "Team Stooge" July 2018