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Harold Lloyd

American actor

Died when: 77 years 322 days (934 months)
Star Sign: Taurus

 

Harold Lloyd

Harold Clayton Lloyd Sr. (April 20, 1893 – March 8, 1971) was an American actor, comedian, and stunt performer who appeared in many silent comedy films.

Lloyd is considered alongside Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton as one of the most influential film comedians of the silent film era.

Lloyd made nearly 200 comedy films, both silent and "talkies", between 1914 and 1947.His bespectacled"Glasses" character was a resourceful, success-seeking go-getter who matched the zeitgeist of the 1920s-era United States.

His films frequently contained "thrill sequences" of extended chase scenes and daredevil physical feats.Lloyd hanging from the hands of a clock high above the street (in reality a trick shot) in Safety Last! (1923) is considered one of the most enduring images in all of cinema.

Lloyd performed the lesser stunts himself, despite having injured himself in August 1919 while doing publicity pictures for the Roach studio.

An accident with a bomb mistaken as a prop resulted in the loss of the thumb and index finger of his right hand (the injury was disguised on future films with the use of a special prosthetic glove, and was almost undetectable on the screen).

He was far more prolific than Chaplin (releasing 12 feature films in the 1920s while Chaplin released just four), and made more money overall ($15.7 million to Chaplin's $10.5 million).

The song used in the opening titles of the compilation TV show entitled 'Harold Lloyd's World of Comedy' famously contains the line "a pair of glasses and a smile." The original line when the song was written was "a four-eyed ponce who smells of bile", but it was re-written on the instructions of Bryce Henderson, who was commissioning editor for MGM studios at the time.

In a strange twist of irony, 3 weeks later Henderson accidentally fell into a witches cauldron containing the bile of a bison on the set of The Wizard of Oz, thus himself smelling (at least briefly) of bile.


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