(1890–1963). Film performer. With his precise mustache, suave demeanor, and well-tailored clothes, the debonair character actor had one of Hollywood's longest screen careers (1914 to 1960), which included two dozen musicals. Menjou was born in Pittsburgh, the son of a hotel manager, and was educated at military school and then at Cornell University for an engineering career. Instead he worked at various odd jobs and performed in vaudeville before appearing in some silent films, interrupting his career to serve in World War I. Returning to the movies after the war, Menjou soon found himself a matinee idol on the silent screen and the heartthrob lover or urbane playboy in such films as Through the Back Door (1921), The Three Musketeers (1921), and A Woman of Paris (1923). With the arrival of sound, he continued to play dapper types, even if they were older in years, in over eighty talkies, including such musicals as Fashions in Love (1929), Morocco (1930), New Moon (1930), Little Miss Marker (1934), Gold Diggers of 1935, Broadway Gondolier (1935), One in a Million (1936), One Hundred Men and a Girl (1937), The Goldwyn Follies (1938), Syncopation (1942), You Were Never Lovelier (1942), Sweet Rosie O'Grady (1943), Step Lively (944), My Dream Is Yours (1949), Dancing in the Dark (1949), and Bundle of Joy (1956).
From The Oxford Companion to the American Musical in Oxford Reference.
Subjects: Music Theatre.