Angelo Rossitto

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Angelo Rossitto
Angelo Rossitto, right, aged 24 in Tod Browning's Freaks. Fellow performer Johnny Eck is on the left.
Angelo Salvatore Rossitto

(1908-02-18)February 18, 1908
DiedSeptember 21, 1991(1991-09-21) (aged 83)
Occupation(s)Actor, voice artist
Years active1927–1987
Height2 ft 11 in (89 cm)
Angelo Rossitto acting in selected scenes from the 1927 film Old San Francisco

Angelo Salvatore Rossitto (February 18, 1908 – September 21, 1991) was an American actor and voice artist. He had dwarfism and was 2'11" (89 cm) tall, and was often billed as Little Angie or Moe.[1] Angelo first appeared in silent films opposite Lon Chaney and John Barrymore. On screen, he portrayed everything from dwarfs, midgets, gnomes and pygmies as well as monsters, villains and aliens, with appearances in more than 70 films.

Rossitto in Mr. Wong in Chinatown


Rossitto was born in Omaha, Nebraska to Salvatore Rossitto and Carmela Caniglia, both born in Carlentini, Province of Siracusa, Sicily, Italy and had a sister, Josephine Rossitto.

He was discovered by John Barrymore and made his screen debut opposite Barrymore in The Beloved Rogue (1927). That same year he appeared in Warner Brother's Old San Francisco. He appeared in the controversial 1932 film Freaks directed by Tod Browning, and another controversial film, 1938's Child Bride. During the 1940s, he appeared in several poverty row movies starring Bela Lugosi. He appeared frequently in television series and mini-series, particularly best known for the police drama Baretta, and his later film roles included appearances in Alex in Wonderland (1970), Brain of Blood (1971), Dracula vs. Frankenstein (1971), Little Cigars (1973), and Fairy Tales (1978). His last major role was as "Master" opposite Mel Gibson in Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (1985).[2]

Popular culture[edit]

Rossitto appears alongside singer/songwriter Tom Waits and Lee Kolima on the cover art of Waits' 1983 album Swordfishtrombones, which pays homage to his performance in Freaks. He also appears on the cover of Bob Dylan's album The Basement Tapes.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Angelo Rossitto". Movies & TV Dept. The New York Times. 2013. Archived from the original on September 21, 2013. Retrieved January 22, 2012.
  2. ^ Maslin, Janet (July 10, 1985). "FILM: GIBSON IN A 'MAD MAX' SEQUEL". The New York Times.

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