Oliver Hardy, real name Norvell Hardy (Harlem, Georgia18 January 1892 - HollywoodAugust 7, 1957), was an American film actor. He is particularly known as the ' thick ' half of the comic duo Laurel and Hardy .

Between 1914 and 1951 he made furore in more than 400 films. Known titles are The Flying DeucesTit for TatBig Business and The Bohemian Girl .


[hide]*1 Biography


Young years[Edit]Edit

Hardy's father, Oliver, was a war veteran who was wounded at the battle of Antietam. His family was moved to Madison in 1891. Norvell Hardy was probably born in Harlem, but some sources speak of Covington. His father died less than a year after his birth.

Hardy was the youngest of five children. As a child he was sometimes very tricky. So he was sent to the Military Academy of Milledgeville. On his 13th, he went to theYoung Harris College in North Georgia. However, he had little interest in his studies. However, from an early age he was interested in music and theater. He joined a theater group and even ran away from a boarding school near Atlanta to go with this company. He studied music and voice training at Adolf Dahm Patterson.

Sometime before 1910 took Hardy Oliver Norvell Hardy "to already the name", where "Oliver" was meant as a tribute to his father. Hardy's mother wanted him to study law at the University of Georgia, but it is not known whether Hardy has done this before.

Solo Career[Edit]Edit

[1][2]Oliver Hardy

There was a movie theater opened In 1910 in Hardy's hometown of Milledgeville. Hardy got here work as playing cricket, card seller, Concierge and manager. So he became involved in the film industry, and he was convinced that he could deliver better work than the actors in the films he saw. A friend gave him the tip to go to Jacksonville in Florida because there were shot. In 1913 he succeeded Hardy in this period earned a living as a singer and comedian in vaudeville theaters. Also at this time he met his first wife, the pianist Madelyn Saloshin.

In 1914, Hardy: his first film Outwitting Dad of Lubin. He was billed as o. n. Hardy. In his personal life, he earned the nickname "Babe" Hardy, a name coined by an Italian Barber. Hardy's large size, however, the limited number of roles that he could play. He was often cast as the villain.

Around 1915 had Hardy already 50 short films made for Lubin. He moved to New York to start working for Pathé, Casino and Edison Studios. He later returned to Jacksonville to go to work for the Vim Comedy Company. This studio closed when Hardy discovered that the owners money swatches of the staff. [1In the following years worked Hardy along with Charlie Chaplinimitator Billy West and Ethel Burton Palmer. In 1917 moved Hardy to Los Angeles to work as a freelance actor.

Between 1918 and 1921 made Hardy more than 40 films for Vitagraph. In 1921 he was to see for the first time together with his later partner Stan Laurel in The Lucky Dog. In 1919, he divorced his wife. On november 24, 1921, he married actress Myrtle Reeves.

In 1924 came Hardy to work for Hal Roach, where he performed in the Our Gangfilms and Charley Chase. In 1925, he played the Tin man in the Wizard of Oz .

In 1926 might Hardy occur in Get 'em Young, but he ended up unexpectedly in the hospital after itself to have burned to a hot leg of lamb. Laurel took therefore the role of him about. [2]

With Stan Laurel[Edit]Edit


See Laurel and Hardy for the main article on this topic.

In 1926 (albeit only really in 1927) began working with Stan Laurel at Hal Roach. Soon they became known as comedy duo and they played together in many silent films. Later they played also, initially reluctantly, in spoken films.

Hardy and Laurel remained a duo until Hardy's death. Officially had Hardy hate his voluminous figure, but the studio insisted that he's not on diet was going to so the contrast between him and the skinny Laurel coverage. In 1937, he divorced Reeves. In 1940, he married Virginia Lucille Jones.

In 1949, Hardy once more without Laurel on in a movie, namely The Fighting Kentuckian .


The last years of his life went Hardy's health fast reverse. In 1954 he suffered a mild heart attack, followed by a strokein 1955. There he never fully recovered. In 1956 he began to devote more attention to his health.He went on a diet, what his appearance changed drastically. From letters between Hardy and Laurel, it is revealed that Hardy possible to a form of suffering Terminal cancer , which would be the cause of his sudden weight loss.

In september 1956 he again got to bed making a stroke months Hardy had to stay and no longer could talk. In August 1957, there were two strokes, leaving him in a coma from which he would never awaken ended up. He died at the age of 65. [3]

Oliver Hardy is buried in the Valhalla Memorial Park Cemetery in North Hollywood.


Oliver Hardy was artistically considered the lesser of Stan Laurel, but he was an excellent actor. Some typical Hardy features are:

  • The careful fidgeting to his tie
  • The charming introducing Stan: "I'd like you to meet my friend Mr. Laurel"
  • The arrogant aside of Stan: "Let me do that"
  • The aggrieved look in the camera, making him the public engages in his wretched situation
  • The accusation based direction Stan: "Well, here's another fine mess you've gotten us into"
  • The desperate appeal direction Stan: "Why don't you do something to help me?"


Oliver Hardy has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.