Saturday, October 25, 2014

Baby LeRoy

Born May 12, 1932, Ronald Le Roy Overacker was the birth name of Baby LeRoy, who is best known as a comic foil for the bombastic W. C. Fields. His career on the silver screen began when he was less than a year old, co-starring with Maurice Chevalier in "A Bedtime Story" (1933) and ended with a cameo role as himself in "Cinema Circus" (1937). Today's photo shows Baby LeRoy with Fields in "The Old Fashioned Way" (1934), which was his second feature with the bulbous-nosed comedian ("Tillie and Gus," 1933, was the first, and "It's a Gift," 1934, was the third).

Here's the vintage publicity blurb that accompanied this photo:

HOW ABOUT A HUNK? Baby LeRoy celebrated his birthday with a new Paramount contract, and this cake, which W. C. Fields seems to want a large slice of. The old feudists are working together in "The Old-Fashioned Way."

I guess it took four gals to help Baby LeRoy sign his contract.

There are also a number of photos that exist showing Baby LeRoy paired with Shirley Temple. This still is from the set of "Little Miss Marker." The two are held by director Alexander Hall.

In Hollywood Magazine's September 1934 issue, they ran a story titled "Baby LeRoy's First Date." Here are a few photos from that feature.

I guess Baby LeRoy was making more money at this point, as it appears he paid for the date.

Nothing like a soda fountain beverage to finish off the perfect date.

A starring role in the 1940 film "The Biscuit Eater" was to have been LeRoy's comeback, but due to illness, the director was forced to recast, and LeRoy never appeared in another film. Instead, he became a merchant seaman. In 1957, he appeared as a guest challenger on the TV panel show "To Tell The Truth." He died in Van Nuys, California on July 28, 2001.

I found this photo on the web, which is supposed to be Baby LeRoy all grown up.

Follow my Daveland updates on Twitter and view my most recent photos on Flickr.

See more Daveland Classic Movie & TV photos at my main website.


K. Martinez said...

The last image of the Baby LeRoy all grown up looks like a character you'd find in a Stephen King novel. Sort of creepy.

Dreemfinder said...

In the late seventies I was performing a traveling medicine show at Magic Mountain's Spillikin Corners and I booked a performance at the Century Plaza Hotel for a private party. Before the show I stopped in at the liquor store downstairs where the fellow behind the cash register admired a cloisonne pin I was wearing of W.C. Fields. I thanked him and he said, "I used to work with him". I said, "That's impossible; you would have been a -- You're Baby Leroy, aren't you?!" And he smiled that same crooked smile. Nicest man you'd ever want to meet!

Dave DeCaro said...

Great story, Dreemfinder - did he share any other stories with you?