Paul Kelly

Active - 1914 - 2014  |   Born - Nov 6, 1956 in Brooklyn, New York, United States  |   Died - Nov 6, 1956   |   Genres - Drama, Mystery, Adventure

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Biography by AllMovie

Paul Kelly was one of the few actors who not only played killers, but also had first-hand experience in this capacity! On stage from age 7, "Master" Paul Kelly entered films at 8, performing on the sunlight stages of Flatbush's Vitagraph Studios. His first important theatrical role was in Booth Tarkington's Seventeen; he later appeared in Tarkington's Penrod, opposite a young Helen Hayes. Star billing was Kelly's from 1922's Up the Ladder onwards. In films from 1926, Kelly alternated between stage and screen until his talkie debut in 1932's Broadway Through A Keyhole. The actor's career momentum was briefly halted with a two-year forced hiatus. On May 31, 1927, Kelly was found guilty of manslaughter, after killing actor Ray Raymond in a fistfight. The motivating factor of the fatal contretemps was Raymond's wife, Dorothy MacKaye, who married Kelly in 1931, after he'd served prison time for Raymond's death (MacKaye herself died in an automobile accident in 1940). This unfortunate incident had little adverse effect on Kelly's acting career, which continued up until his death in 1956. Returning to Broadway in 1947, Paul Kelly won the Donaldson and Tony awards for his performance in Command Decision; three years later, he starred in the original stage production of Clifford Odets' The Country Girl.

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