Ben Blue

Active - 1927 - 1968  |   Born - Sep 12, 1901 in Montreal  |   Died - Mar 7, 1975 in Los Angeles, CA  |   Genres - Musical, Comedy

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Biography

A lanky, rubber-limbed comedian with a sad face, Ben Blue achieved his effects as much with mime as with dialogue. From age 15 he was on the New York stage and in vaudeville, then beginning in 1926 he appeared in a series of silent short subjects for Warner Brothers, Hal Roach, and other studios. Often appearing in baggy pants, with an eccentric straw hat and cane, he went on during the sound era to work for Paramount, where he was the long-limbed, wistful-eyed funny man in dozens of pictures, tending to put in cameo appearances that stole the show from those with top billing. (One story has it that comedian Red Skelton, after being upstaged by Blue, had a clause put in his contract stating that he would never appear with him again). Blue went on to perform regularly in nightclubs and on TV but dropped out of films in 1948 and spent fifteen years managing the nightclubs he owned. He returned and continued making comedic cameos in films during the '60s (notably in It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World and The Russians are Coming, the Russians are Coming).

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