If one is good, then three are better. Hello everybody. Joe Morella and Frank Segers back with more info on the MGM child stars of the 1930s.
Every studio back in the Golden Era had a child star or two under contract. And at MGM, which boasted as being the biggest and the best, ( “More stars than there are in the heavens.”) they naturally had the most.
FOX may have had Shirley Temple in the 1930s, but Metro had Jackie Cooper, Freddie Bartholomew and Mickey Rooney. (That’s them above.) Not to mention Judy Garland!
Then there were the lesser lights, Ann Rutherford, Tom Brown, Cora Sue Collins, Robert Sinclair.
And the one that got away, Deanna Durbin.
The teenager, once under contract to MGM (she and Garland had made a short film together, Durbin singing “sweet,” Judy singing “hot”) did not have her option renewed and was dropped by the studio.
Universal snapped her up and Durbin became a top star there. Some contend she actually “saved” that studio in the middle of the Great Depression with her handful of family oriented film musicals.
And who can readily forget Margaret O’Brien, who followed Temple as perhaps Hollywood’s biggest child star of the Forties at MGM.