The most hilarious comedy couple in the American cinema of the beginning of the twentieth century were two charming eccentrics: a frail crybaby – a simple Laurel and a self-assured tough-haired Hardy. This couple was the same symbol of the era of silent cinema, as Charlie Chaplin, and adored them, perhaps even more.
Comic actors have always been loved by the public. Regardless of their mood and condition, they give people joy, causing laughter and allowing one to distract at least briefly from the burden of problems. But it’s very difficult to cheer people up.
You need to have some special gift and a whole bunch of talents, and not just have a funny appearance. And how much time and effort it takes to find and develop not only a good joke or a trick but even fleeting phrases, gestures, glances … But you also have to laugh smartly and smartly, so as not to offend. And from Laurel and Hardy it worked out very well.
For the first time, fate reduced them in 1917 on the set of the movie “Lucky Dog”, but then they still did not see each other, and at the end of filming, everyone continued to do their work.
And only after 10 years, between them, again met on one set, a strong friendship was established, which eventually developed into one of the most famous partnerships in the history of cinema, and for which they were even included in the Guinness Book of Records.
Before the formation of the duo in 1927, the actors were very far apart and each of them could boast of a respectable film career.
Stan Laurel (Arthur Stanley Jefferson)
He was born and lived in England, he visited America twice as a member of the theater company, where he stayed to live. There he got carried away by the Australian ballerina and singer May Dalberg, and it was she who came up with this pseudonym for him, Stan Laurel, since Arthur was very concerned that his very long name might not fit on the poster. In 1926, producer Hal Roach offered him the work of a screenwriter and director, while making sure that Dahlberg disappeared from his life, as it greatly distracted Stan from his work.
Roach offered Darrell money, bought a one way ticket to Australia, she agreed and left. Working at Roach, about the acting career, Laurel no longer thought, but then the case interfered with the case. Hardy, who participated in the shooting, badly burned his hand when he was preparing a leg of mutton for his friends, and Laurel was invited to act in his place.
Hardy Oliver (Norwegian Hardy)
He was born in Harlem, USA. After his father’s death, he added his name to Oliver and became Hardy Oliver. He also from childhood thought about acting career. Having tried several professions, he nevertheless made the final decision to become an actor. But, possessing a large complexion, he had to be satisfied with the roles of the second plan or play comic villains. Moving to Los Angeles in 1917, he works simultaneously in several studios, and in the mid-1920s he is invited to his home by Roach, with whom he signs a contract.
The famous couple
Formed in 1927, the comic duo of two eccentrics very quickly gained immense popularity. And although the plots of the films were the simplest, the audience laughed at them to tears. The duo appeared in dozens of films, and all of them ended in the crown phrase: “Well, we’re in trouble again because of your mercy …”.
Joint shooting grew into a very warm friendship of 30 years. Non-separate friends and “crime partners” on the screen, they were just as close in real life. Of course, each of them had their own shortcomings, and they quarreled both on the court and in life, but despite all the skirmishes, they loved each other and remained best friends. Gathering together after filming, laughed at their tricks. It is interesting that in life each of them had a character completely opposite to the screen one. Oliver in life was a calm and reserved person and completely trusted his friend, who made the basic decisions in a creative and career plan.
The heyday of the creativity of this pair came in the late 1920s. And although in the future they were successfully shot in the sound cinema that came to replace the “Great Mute”, and in full-length films, but most of all they loved short films, for one of which in 1932 they received the Oscar.
“Box with music” – a very kind and funny comedy, the whole story is based on how two friends, arranged to work as porters and received an order to deliver the piano, scrambling along a narrow and long staircase, drag him into the apartment. Naturally, this creates a lot of ridiculous and ridiculous situations, from which our heroes try to come out with honor, thereby only aggravating the situation.
In 1940, in order to save the duo, the actors broke off the contract with Hal Roach, as he was going to shoot only feature films.
Completion of career
After the death of his friend in 1957, Laurel fell into the deepest depression and decided to end his acting career. All incoming proposals, even the main role in Stanley Kramer’s film “This mad, mad, mad, mad world”, he rejected.
And he was engaged in that he met with fans, gladly shared with them stories from a past life. He placed his phone number in a free access, and many fans, to their great surprise, could talk with their idol in person.