Happy Birthday Huntz Hall: DON’T KILL YOUR FRIENDS (1943)


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Today marks the birthday of a definitely acquired taste, Huntz Hall. Born Henry Richard Hall in New York on 8/15/1920, he got his nickname because his large proboscis made him look German, according to his Irish neighborhood friends. Huntz entered show biz at a young age, and by 1935 was starring on Broadway in the hit play DEAD END. The six original cast members (Hall, Leo Gorcey, Billy Halop, Bobby Jordan, Gabriel Dell, Bernard Punsley), collectively known as The Dead End Kids, appeared in the 1937 film version with Joel McCrea, Sylvia Sidney, Claire Trevor, and Humphrey Bogart as the slum kids’ idol, gangster Baby Face Martin. Warner Brothers signed all six boys to contracts and featured them in prestige films like CRIME SCHOOL, ANGELS WITH DIRTY FACES, and THEY MADE ME A CRIMINAL with top stars James Cagney, John Garfield, and Ronald Reagan.

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The Kids were a rowdy bunch on-set, wreaking havoc and…

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