Bobby Jordan

Active - 1934 - 2006  |   Born - Apr 1, 1923   |   Died - Sep 10, 1965   |   Genres - Comedy, Drama, Crime

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Biography by Hal Erickson

Juvenile actor Bobby Jordan worked in radio, industrial films and as a child model before making his Broadway bow at age seven. He attended New York's Professional Children's School, making an excellent impression along with several of his classmates in Sidney Kingsley's 1935 play Dead End. This assignment took Jordan to Hollywood, along with fellow "Dead End Kids" Leo Gorcey, Huntz Hall, Billy Halop, Gabriel Dell and Bernard Punsley. Though he most often appeared on screen with his Dead End companions, Jordan occasionally took a meaty solo supporting role, such as "Douglas Fairbanks Rosenbloom" in the 1938 gangster farce A Slight Case of Murder. Jordan went along for the ride when the Dead End Kids became the East Side Kids at Monogram studios in the early 1940s; in these cheap but endearing films, Jordan usually played the character who got into deep trouble, obliging Gorcey, Hall and the rest of the ever-aging "Kids" to bail him out. He left the East Side aggregation for military service in 1943, returning to the fold in 1946, by which time the group had reinvented himself as the Bowery Boys. Unhappy that his career as a leading man had never truly gained any momentum, Jordan left films in the late 1940s, taking on several odd jobs, ranging from bartender to oil-field worker; he re-emerged on screen as Robert Jordan for a bit in the 1956 western This Man is Armed. The rest of Jordan's life was blighted with marital problems, drunkenness, and continual run-ins with the law. Bobby Jordan died of cirrhosis of the liver at age 42.

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