Joe Cook
Date of Birth
Mar 29, 1890
Birth Place:
Evansville, IN

Biography

Known for his "contagious good-naturedness" and often billed as "The One-Man Vaudeville" (despite the presence of stooges Tom Howard and Dave Chasen), song-and-dance-man Joe Cook (born Lopez) recreated his 1928 Broadway hit Rain or Shine for the Columbia Pictures cameras in 1930. Cook once again played Smiley, the dedicated promoter who, when the circus performers fail to live up to expectations, takes over the show himself. Rain or Shine was directed with his usual can-do enthusiasm by Frank Capra, but all the songs were exorcised due to a slump in musical attendance and Cook was forced to play it straight. The results were not encouraging and apart from a couple of Educational comedy shorts, Cook did not return to the screen until 1935, in Paramount's Arizona Mahoney. He once again played a travelling circus entrepreneur, this time attempting to turn cowpoke, but the mix of Broadway patter and Wild West shenanigans failed to find an audience and Cook left Hollywood for good. ~ Hans J. Wollstein, Rovi

Provided by Rovi