Eugene Curran Kelly was an American actor, dancer, singer, filmmaker, comedian and choreographer. He starred in, choreographed, or co-directed some of the most well-regarded musical films of the 1940s and 1950s. Kelly received an Academy Honorary Award in 1952 for his career achievements. He died in a car accident in New York in 1989.
About Gene Kelly in brief
Eugene Curran Kelly was an American actor, dancer, singer, filmmaker, comedian and choreographer. He starred in, choreographed, or co-directed some of the most well-regarded musical films of the 1940s and 1950s. His many innovations transformed the Hollywood musical, and he is credited with almost single-handedly making the ballet form commercially acceptable to film audiences. Kelly received an Academy Honorary Award in 1952 for his career achievements, the same year An American in Paris won six Academy Awards, including Best Picture. He later received lifetime achievement awards in the Kennedy Center Honors and from the Screen Actors Guild and American Film Institute. Kelly was born in the East Liberty neighborhood of Pittsburgh. He was the third son of James Patrick Joseph Kelly, a phonograph salesman, and his wife, Harriet Catherine Curran. His maternal grandfather was an immigrant from Derry, Ireland and his maternal grandmother was of German ancestry. He attended St. Raphael Elementary School in the Morningside neighborhood ofPittsburgh and graduated from Peabody High School at age 16. Kelly served as a teacher at the Synagogue Synagogue in Pittsburgh for seven years until he decided to pursue a career as a dance teacher and entertainer. In 1937, having successfully managed and developed the family’s dance business, he finally moved to New York City to work as a choreographer and dancer. He died in a car accident in New York in 1989. He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Mary, and their three children.
He had a son, Michael, and a daughter, Jennifer. Kelly, who died in 2011. She is the former owner of a dance studio in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, which she also co-hosted and appeared in Ziegfeld Follies, That’s Entertainment! and That’s Dancing! She is also the co-owner of a children’s clothing line, The Kelly Collection. Kelly is the grandfather of actor Michael Kelly, Michael Kelly Jr. and daughter-in-law, Jennifer Kelly, daughter-to-be Lisa Kelly, and son-in law Michael Kelly III, who is also a film director and producer. He also has a son named James Kelly, Jr., who is the son of Michael and Mary Kelly, III, and step-son to actor David Carradine, who also starred in It’s Always Fair Weather. He has a grandson, James, who has a successful acting career of his own. Kelly died in 2012 and is buried in Pittsburgh’s East Liberty Cemetery, where he grew up with his wife and three children, including a son and two step-daughters. His son, James Kelly Jr., is a well-known actor and director of musicals, including the musicals Les Girls and Singin’ in the Rain and The Pirate. Kelly also appeared in several films outside the musical genre, including Inherit the Wind and What a Way to Go! In 1967, he appeared in French director Jacques Demy’s musical comedy The Young Girls of Rochefort opposite Catherine Deneuve. Kelly directed films without a collaborator including, the comedy A Guide for the Married Man starring Walter Matthau, and the musical Hello, Dolly!