Hal Skelly est un Acteur Américain né le 31 mai 1891 à Alleghenyville (Etats-Unis)
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Hal Skelly (May 31, 1891– June 16, 1934) was an American Broadway and film actor.
He was born James Harold Skelley in Alleghenyville, Pennsylvania to James and Martha Skelley. His family moved to Davenport, Iowa when he was four. He had four sisters and three brothers. Skelley was educated at Sacred Heart School in Davenport and St. Bede Academy in Peru, Illinois. He left home at the age of 15 and joined the circus. He acted in his first stage production, The Time, the Place and the Girl, at the LaSalle Theater in Chicago when he was 16. For a short period of time he was a backup first baseman for the Boston Braves and a prizefight manager. For his professional name he shortened his middle name Harold to Hal and dropped the final "e" in Skelley.
Skelly became a veteran of medicine shows, musical comedy, burlesque, Lew Dockstader's minstrels and opera. He joined the A.M. Zinn musical comedy company in San Francisco where his eccentric dancing ability earned him the nickname "Tumbling Harold Skelly". Always enamored with the circus, he spent a year with Barnum & Bailey. Skelly toured China and Japan with a musical comedy troupe, the Raymond Teale Company.
Skelly made his Broadway debut in Fiddler’s Three (1918) and went on to appear in ten other shows on Broadway. In 1927, he played a starring role alongside Barbara Stanwyck, in her first Broadway hit, the musical production "Burlesque". Paramount Pictures invited the two to star in the 1929 talkie film version of the show, retitled The Dance of Life because studio executives claimed the original title too risqué, but surely these veteran showmen were well aware that the term "dance of life" was burlesque slang meaning 'fornication'. Stanwyck turned down the offer, while Skelly reprised his role as charismatic drunk 'Skid' Johnson. Skelly made a total of ten films, including the Woman Trap (1929), Behind the Make-Up (1930), and The Shadow Laughs (1933). He was also featured on two movie soundtracks.
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