Robert Woolsey

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Robert Woolsey
Dressed in tuxedos and top hats, Bert Wheeler (left) and Robert Woolsey (right) stand and smile for a publicity photo. An inscription appears in the top left corner.
Dressed in white tie and tails, Bert Wheeler (left) and Robert Woolsey (right) stand and smile for a publicity photo. An inscription appears in the top left corner.
Born (1888-08-14)August 14, 1888
Oakland, California
Died October 31, 1938(1938-10-31) (aged 50)
Malibu, California
Nationality United States
Occupation Actor
Known for Wheeler & Woolsey

Robert Rolla Woolsey (August 14, 1888 – October 31, 1938) was an American stage and screen comedian and half of the 1930s comedy team Wheeler & Woolsey.

He was born in Oakland, California.[1] Woolsey always had a slight build, and as a young adult he tried to capitalize on it by becoming a jockey. After he fell from a horse and sustained an injury, he quit racing and turned instead to the stage. In 1925 he was featured as "Mortimer Pottle" in W. C. Fields's Broadway hit Poppy.

Woolsey was teamed with comedy star Bert Wheeler in 1928, for the Broadway musical Rio Rita. RKO Radio Pictures filmed the play in 1929, launching Wheeler and Woolsey as movie personalities. Woolsey became terminally ill in 1937 and struggled to finish his last picture, High Flyers. He was then confined to bed for almost a full year, before dying of kidney failure in 1938, Robert Woolsey was interred in the Forest Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery in Glendale, California.

From 1921 to his death in 1938, Woolsey was married to Mignonne Park Reed, who lived on to age 94.[2][3]

Nine of Wheeler and Woolsey's 21 movies were released in a DVD collection entitled "Wheeler & Woolsey: RKO Comedy Classics Collection" in March 2013 by Warner Archive.[4]


References[edit]

  1. ^ Cullen, Frank; Hackman, Florence; McNeilly, Donald (2007). Vaudeville, Old & New. Routledge. ISBN 0-415-93853-8 p. 1229.
  2. ^ "Mignonne R Reed Woolsey (1894-1989) FindAGrave Memorial". Ancestry.com. Retrieved 31 March 2013. 
  3. ^ "Robert Woolsey-Biography". IMDb.com Inc. Retrieved 31 March 2013. 
  4. ^ Kehr, Dave (2 March 2013). "DVD Ribaldry Before the Code". The New York Times. Retrieved 30 March 2013. 

External links[edit]