Former child star Jackie Cooper Dies at 88
LOS ANGELES, Wed May 04, 08:21 PM
Jackie Cooper, the former child movie star who won a best actor Oscar nomination at the age of 9 for “Skippy” and grew up to play The Daily Planet editor in Christopher Reeves’ four “Superman” movies, has died. He was 88.
Cooper died Tuesday of old age at a nursing facility in Santa Monica, Calif., said his son, John Cooper.
“He was a fascinating guy who really did everything, from all different aspects of the business,” said his other son, Russell Cooper. “You can’t really say that about many people.”
Cooper reigned with Shirley Temple as one of the most popular child stars of the 1930s. Starting in comedy shorts, he rose to top ranks with “Skippy,” a sentimental adaptation of a popular comic strip. He followed with such hits as “The Champ,” “The Bowery,” “Treasure Island” and “O’Shaughnessy’s Boy,” all co-starring Wallace Beery.
With his career fading after World War II, Cooper left Hollywood for the New York theater. He returned to Hollywood and starred in two successful situation comedies, “The People’s Choice” (1955-58) and “Hennessey” (1959-62). He appeared as a Navy doctor in “Hennessey,” which he also produced and directed.
“I think it’s tough to direct and star in a feature,” he commented in a 1971 interview. “Either the direction or the performance will suffer. But an actor can direct himself in television. I found it essential to relieve the crushing boredom of starring in a series.”Read more here: Jackie Cooper