Gus Meins

Active - 1933 - 1940  |   Genres - Comedy

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Biography by Hal Erickson

Gus Meins started out in the 'teens as a cartoonist for the Los Angeles Evening Herald. Meins joined the Fox studios as a comedy writer in 1919, and within a few years was a gag man/director for Mack Sennett. He directed several comedy series at Universal in the 1920s, and also helmed the Stern Bros. "Buster Brown" comedies, many of which are still available for viewing. In 1932, he joined Hal Roach, directing the 2-reel escapades of Thelma Todd, ZaSu Pitts, Patsy Kelly and Charley Chase. He was most closely associated with the "Our Gang" comedies, directing 14 series entries between 1934 and 1936, including such enduring classics as Hi'-Neighbor (1934), Shrimps for a Day (1934), Mama's Little Pirate (1934), Beginner's Luck (1935) and Our Gang Follies of 1936 (1935). While at Roach, he co-directed the Laurel & Hardy feature Babes in Toyland (1934). Meins left the studio in 1937, resuming his career at Republic, where he piloted several of that studio's Higgins Family entries with James, Lucille and Russell Gleason. Fondly remembered as a cheerful, convivial gentleman, Gus Meins evidently had a darker side that he never revealed to his co-workers; shortly after completing his final Republic effort in 1940, Meins committed suicide.

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