Malcolm St. Clair (filmmaker)

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Malcolm St. Clair
Woodcut by Bertrand Zadig (1927)
Born(1897-05-17)May 17, 1897
DiedJune 1, 1952(1952-06-01) (aged 55)
Occupation(s)Film director, writer, producer, and actor
Notable workYankee Doodle in Berlin

Malcolm St. Clair (May 17, 1897 – June 1, 1952) was a Hollywood film director, writer, producer and actor.[1]


Hired by comedy pioneer Mack Sennett, St. Clair was an actor in many films, primarily comedies. At 6'7" he can be seen in such Sennett films as Yankee Doodle in Berlin, towering over the other actors, playing Crown Prince Wilhelm. He later directed almost 100 films, as well as producing five others, between 1915 and 1948.[1] His brother, Eric St. Clair, was a writer and actor.[2]

Between assignments at Sennett, St. Clair worked for the Buster Keaton company, serving as actor and co-director.

St. Clair joined 20th Century-Fox in 1936 and directed an assortment of comedies and dramas, including the Jones Family series of domestic comedies and a Milton Berle feature. He also accepted freelance assignments, including two Lum and Abner features. Mal St. Clair is perhaps best known as the director of four Laurel and Hardy comedies, released by Fox between June 1943 and May 1945.

Fox closed its B unit in December 1944,[3] leaving St. Clair inactive until 1948, when he directed two low-budget features for Fox release. In 1950, he wanted to direct Buster Keaton in a television series, but ill health prevented him from directing again.[4]

He died on June 1, 1952, at age 55.

Partial filmography[edit]

The Boudoir Diplomat (1930)


  1. ^ a b Dwyer, Rauth Anne (March 20, 1997). Malcolm St. Clair: His Films 1915–1948. The Scarecrow Filmmakers Series. Scarecrow Press. ISBN 978-0-8108-2709-7.
  2. ^ Vazzana, Eugene Michael (July 16, 2001). Silent Film Necrology. McFarland & Company. p. 464. ISBN 978-0-7864-1059-0.
  3. ^ Scott MacGillivray, Laurel & Hardy: From the Forties Forward, Second Edition, iUniverse, 2009, p. 160. ISBN 978-1-4401-7237-3
  4. ^ Erickson, Hal (2014). "Malcolm St Clair". Movies & TV Dept. The New York Times. Archived from the original on 30 March 2014. Retrieved 21 March 2014.

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