Happy Birthday, Patsy Kelly!
Brash, beautiful Patsy Kelly, Hollywood’s Queen of Wisecracks, was born under the name Sarah Veronica Rose Kelly on January 12th, 1910 in Brooklyn. One of my all-time favorite comediennes, she had a rapid-fire delivery and street-smart working-class personality that made her the perfect foil for the blonde bombshell Thelma Todd; the pair made 35 comedy shorts for Hal Roach as his female Laurel and Hardy team before Todd’s untimely death in 1935.
She eventually made the leap to feature-length films, and although she rarely had a starring role, she easily stole the scene whenever she appeared in a film, usually with saucy double entendres and sardonic one-liners delivered out of the side of her mouth.
Despite a seventeen-year hiatus from film after her career began to decline in the 1940s, Patsy found steady work in her later years as a perennial guest-star on TV shows like “The Man from U.N.C.L.E,” “The Wild Wild West,” and “Alfred Hitchcock Presents,” and as a supporting player in 70’s hits like Rosemary’s Baby and Freaky Friday. Patsy was one of the few openly-gay actors in early Hollywood, and made absolutely no secret of the fact that she was a “dyke” and frankly discussed her relationship with actress Wilma Cox, and later, her affair with Tallulah Bankhead.
Happy birthday, Patsy, and thanks for all the laughs!
Posted on January 12, 2017, in Fun Stuff, Movie People, Photos, Short Films, Uncategorized and tagged Comedy, Gay, Hal Roach, Lesbian, Patsy Kelly, Thelma Todd. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.