Fred Astaire

Fred Astaire
MGM

Stars

Fred Astaire
Film: South side of the 6700 block of Hollywood Boulevard
Actor | Dancer
Born May 10, 1899 in Omaha, NE
Died June 22, 1987 of pneumonia in Century City, Calif.

Fred Astaire's style, elegance and graceful approach to movement made him the most acclaimed dancer in motion picture history.

His flawless routines looked easy only because of his intense preparation. Depression-weary audiences were captivated by his apparently effortless and sophisticated manner when he and Ginger Rogers first appeared together in "Flying Down to Rio."

Astaire was best known for the 10 films he made with Rogers.

In "The Gay Divorcee," the pair danced "The Continental" and did what dance critic Arlene Croce called an "incomparable dance of seduction" to Cole Porter's "Night and Day."

In Jerome Kern's "Roberta," they danced to "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes." In Irving Berlin's "Top Hat," they danced "Cheek to Cheek." In Berlin's "Follow the Fleet," their big number was "Let's Face the Music and Dance."

He teamed with Eleanor Powell in "Broadway Melody of 1940" and with Paulette Goddard in "Second Chorus." He and Bing Crosby made "Holiday Inn" in 1941.

Throughout the 1940s and early 1950s, his film dancing partners included Rita Hayworth ("You'll Never Get Rich" and "You Were Never Lovelier"), Joan Leslie, Lucille Bremer, Judy Garland, Vera-Ellen, Betty Hutton, Leslie Caron ("Daddy Long Legs") and Cyd Charisse.

His humor and finesse coupled with his lilting, half-spoken singing delighted two generations of film-goers while millions more had fallen under his spell through the television specials that became an apex to his long and productive career.

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Points of interest

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    Academy Awards

    Year Category Work
    1949 Special Award Win
    1974 Best Supporting Actor The Towering Inferno Nomination

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