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|Nickname:||Buster Keaton / 'Buster' Keaton / The Great Stone Face / Malic|
|Known for:||The General, Sherlock Jr., Cops|
|Birth name:||Joseph Frank Keaton VI|
|Birthday:||4 October 1895, Piqua, Kansas, USA|
|Height:||5' 6" (1.68 m)|
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TriviaSon of Joe Keaton. Father of Buster Keaton Jr. and Bob Talmadge. His older son was born during his marriage to Natalie Talmadge. Interred at Forest Lawn (Hollywood Hills), Los Angeles, California, USA. Fractured his neck while filming Sherlock Jr. (1924) and did not learn about it until a doctor saw X-rays of his neck during a routine physical examination many years later. He was already quite ill with the cancer that would eventually kill him by the time he made his last completed film, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (1966). He used a stunt double in this film, as well as most of the films he made as an MGM contract player. Before signing with MGM in 1928, he had performed all of his own stunts, and even doubled for cast members in his own films, as in Sherlock Jr. (1924), where he played both himself, riding on the handlebars of a motorcycle, and the man who falls off the back of it. Because most of his childhood was spent on vaudeville with his parents, he had few peers. However, he enjoyed a more regular childhood during his family's annual summer getaways to an Actor's Colony on Lake Michigan in Muskegon, Michigan. In fact, the city of Muskegon has erected a historical marker to note his stomping ground. He became an alcoholic when he his career collapsed around 1930, only kicking his habit and regaining his self-esteem when he married Eleanor Norris (Eleanor Keaton), who was his wife from 1940 to his death in 1966. Biography in: John Wakeman, editor. "World Film Directors, Volume One, 1890-1945". Pages 523-531. New York: The H.W. Wilson Company, 1987. When he married Natalie Talmadge, the Talmadge family was one of the great acting dynasties in both theater and film, and the gossip in Hollywood was that Keaton married her to gain respect in the industry, a rumor he never quite lived down during his peak. Ironically, Keaton is now a film legend, while most people would be hard-pressed to answer who the Talmadges are. He often surrounded himself with tall and heavy-set actors in his films, typically as his antagonist, to make his character seem to be at as much of a physical disadvantage as possible. The similarly diminutive Charlie Chaplin (Charles Chaplin) also did this. In one scene in the film Sherlock Jr. (1924) at a train station, he was hanging off of a tube connected to a water basin. The water poured out and washed him on to the track, fracturing his neck. This footage appears in the released film. Was hearing-impaired since 1918, when he was in Germany fighting the war. Met Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle for the first time strolling down Broadway in New York City. Arbuckle was with Keaton's old vaudeville acquittance Lou Anger, who introduced them. Arbuckle immediately asked Keaton to visit the Colony Studio, where he was set to begin a series of comedies for Joseph M. Schenck. The famous comedy team was born. Said he learned everything about movie-making and comedy from 'Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle' . There is much legend regarding the conception of his nickname, Buster. Many attribute the name to the legendary Harry Houdini, who was the partner of Joe Keaton (Buster's father) in the medicine-show group "Kathleen Marownen", after he saw a young Buster fall down a set of stairs without any injury. Others have said that it was Joe who conceived the name after he saw Buster's accident, while still others say that Joe Keaton fabricated the incident for a good story to tell on vaudeville. Which of these stories is actually true is unknown. Wanted to become an engineer as a child Grand-uncle of Camille Keaton. Is mentioned in the song "Cinéma" by Paola Del Medico. He died the same day as his The Slippery Pearls (1931), Speak Easily (1932) and Sunset Blvd. (1950) co-star Hedda Hopper. He is believed to be the first person to use "Buster" as a name, and popularized its usage ever after.