Child Actors: Baby LeRoy (U.S., 1932-2001)

Figure 1.--This is Baby Leroy and Billy Lee in a Easter scene during April 1935. We are not sure about the film title.

Baby LeRoy was a popularAmerican child asctor during the 1930s. His real name was Ronald Le Roy Overacker. He was born in Los Angeles (1932). Few actors even child actors got an earlier style than Baby LeRoy. He began his film career when he was less than 1 year old. He appeared with Maurice Chevalier in 'A Bedtime Story' (1933). He is particuilarly well known for his appearance in several W.C. Fields films, including 'Tillie and Gus' (1933) and 'A Bedtime Story' (1934). As he played a baby, he became known as Baby LeRoy. The relationship was notable. Baby LeRoy when he was 3 years old became drunk and was noticiably staggering after Fields spiked his orange juice with gin while making "It's A Gift". And in their previous film, Fields kicked Baby LeRoy while filming a gag scene. He kicked the child sdo hard that studio executives were disturbed, afraid of how the public would react. Fields defended his action and the scene, saying that men who had to deal with young children would understand. Baby LeRoy for a time was the only child actor at Paramount. Two other boys (Billy Lee and David Holt) were signed at Paramount to provide Baby LeRoy some welcomed company. The camaraderie of the three boys became the source of some amusement on the Paramount lot. His last film was a cameo role playing himself in 'Cinema Circus' (1937). A comeback was planned for him in 1939, playing the main character in 'The Biscuit Eater'. While on location in Georgia, however, LeRoy become very ill following the first day of shooting on the film. Le Roy had been called on to swing on a rope across a lake in the opening scene of the film. But what the camera caught, was Le Roy falling into the lake on each of the two times he attempted the take. Although he was thoroughly dried off both times that he fell into the lake, by the next moring completely lost his voice, suffering from a terrible head and chest cold. The doctor who examined Le Roy insisted that he would need 2 weeks to recover. With cast and crew on location in Georgia, it would have been very costly to wait for the young actor to recover. And he played suchg a central role in thre film, it was impossible to shoot around him. He was in just about every scene. Paramount executives thus decided to recast the part and replace him so as not to hold up the production. Billy Lee stepped in to play the role which became one of his best films. Paramount announced that another Le Roy would appear in a different film after he recovered. That never happened. Thus Baby Le Roy lost his last real chance to make a comeback and demonstrate his acting abiliities. He is thus remembered primarily as comic prop for W.C. Fields. , had slipped out of his hands. As a young adult he became an alcoholic. He appeared as an adult in the role of a guest challenger on the TV panel show 'To Tell The Truth'. He died in Van Nuys, California (2001).


Navigate the Boys' Theatrical Pages:
[Return to the Main child actor "L" page]
[Return to the Main movie page]
[Return to the Main play page]
[Return to the Main television page]
[Child actors H] [Child actors I] [Child actors J] [Child actors K] [Child actors L]
[Child actors M] [Child actors N] [Child actors O] [Child actors P] [Child actors Q] [Child actors R]

Navigate the Historical Boys' Clothing Website
[Introduction] [Activities] [Biographies] [Chronology] [Clothing styles] [Countries]
[Bibliographies] [Contributions] [FAQs] [Glosaries] [Images] [Links] [Registration] [Tools]
[Boys' Clothing Home]

Created: 9:38 PM 5/4/2011
Last updated: 9:38 PM 5/4/2011