George Murphy (Who’s Who at MGM, 1937) 🇺🇸

January 09, 2022

George Murphy was born in New Haven, July 4, the son of the famous Michael Charles Murphy, Olympic coach and former coach of the University of Pennsylvania. The boy was raised in the atmosphere of athletics and rigid training.

While attending prep school, George traveled all through England and Europe. Entering Yale, Murphy studied for engineering and participated in track, football, baseball and basketball.

Success has not turned Murphy’s head. He is just as likely to be found associating with fighters, football players and track stars as with the Hollywood elite.

Worked in Coal Mine

In an effort to learn the engineering industry from the ground up, George got a job in a coal mine, but was seriously injured when a cable broke as he was being lowered into a shaft. After spending six weeks in a hospital, George got another job as a Wall Street runner.

He met Juliette Johnson, a clever dancer, who encouraged him to try his own feet. They were married in 1927 and soon were appearing in such Broadway night spots as the Montmartre, the Lido, Central Park Casino and the Club Richmond at the May fair in London, the Opera Club in Paris and elsewhere.

In addition to his night club work, Murphy has been in such musical shows as “Good News,” “Hold Everything,” “Shoot the Works,” “Here Goes the Bride,” “Of Thee I Sing,” “Roberta” and “Anything Goes.”

Came West to Dance

He came West to dance in similar Hollywood spots and agreed to appear in a screen test with a girl who aspired to a career, although he had no such plans for himself. The test resulted in George’s first screen role in “Kid Millions.” Since then he has danced and sung in “Jealousy,” “I’ll Love You Always,” “After the Dance,” “Public Menace,” “Woman Trap,” “Top of the Town,” Broadway Melody of 1938, and “London by Night,”

Murphy is five feet 11 1/2 inches tall, weighs 175 pounds, has brown hair and blue eyes. He is a clever boxer and enjoys tennis and golf. He collects stamps, maps and hats. He once patented a muscle liniment.

Likes Water-Skiing

Recently, Murphy joined with Frank Shields, the tennis ace, and Courtland Hill, Jock Whitney’s protege in Hollywood, to form the first water ski club in the world, at Lake Arrowhead. They ride on ordinary skis behind careening speed boats and have challenged the world of aquatic sportsmen to organize a team for competition.

Murphy and his wife frequently take dancers’ holidays to dance at social affairs, and they both swim, play tennis and golf. He is a member of the New York Athletic Club, the Lambs, West Side Tennis Club in Hollywood and the Lakeside Golf Club.

Even when he’s working in a picture, he takes part of his lunch hour to box in the studio gymnasium. He has fought rigorous rounds with Lee Ramage, the Pacific Coast heavyweight contender, in training bouts.

He is the first person, on stage or screen, to be Eleanor Powell’s dancing partner. They appeared together in the “Melody of 1938,” doing ballroom and comedy dancing. His fellow workers and critics alike hail him as Hollywood’s new star, both in dancing and acting.

Source: Who’s Who at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, 1937