Donald O'Connor was a BEAUTIFUL man!

My gf and I are watching Singin’ in the Rain, which is a fave of both of ours.

In the scene where Cosmo and Kathy are showing Don the idea of dubbing and lip synching, it occurred to me how pleasant Mr O’Connor was to watch. He has poise, charm, looks, and was extremely athletically gifted. His Make Em Laugh is my favorite number of this show.

Looking him up on IMDb, I was reminded of just how many wonderful movies he was in.

I guess that’s it. This thread is a Donald O’Connor appreciation thread. We miss you, you awesome performer. Thank g-d for video stores and TCM.

Just shared that movie with my kids yesterday, in fact! Absolutely brilliant, what a talented man!

I love love love Singin’ in the Rain, and Donald O’Connor is just wonderful in it. Whenever I see “Moses Supposes” I am amazed at how well he keeps up with Gene Kelly…matches him step for step, and they aren’t easy steps, either. Plus, he’s a good singer AND he’s naturally funny…as he says in the movie, a “triple threat!”

I watched today as well and my favorite with Donald O’Connor is “Make 'em Laugh”. Wonderful!

And while watching SitR, I was reminded visually of what a great butt Gene Kelly had. And Donalds was purty damn fine as well.


O’Connell is a great dancer and comedian certainly. But handsome? Not really.

I never thought that song was funny until I saw O’Connor’s performance of it in SiTR. Great stuff!

We were watching it last night, at the end I remarked about how Donald O’Connor was probably the best second Banana ever in that role.

His “Make 'em Laugh” number is one of the best musical number ever and is overshadowed by being in the movie with the most famous dance number ever.

Outside of the awful ‘Francis’ movies, I do not recall anything else he did as memorable. What were the other wonderful movies he was in?


To answer What Exit’s question, he was in “Sayonara” with Marlon Brando. A dramatic turn. Made me cry when I saw it when I was little. Might seem cheesy instead of Oscar-worthy now, but I don’t know.

You are thinking of Red Buttons, not Donald O’Connor.

Donald O’Connor was mostly not in wonderful movies; he just gave wonderful performances in studio crap that got churned out every year.

Aside from Francis, SitR, and Beau Geste, I can’t think of any movies that outlasted him.

oh my gawsh, what a dumb mistake on my part! But, thanks for pointing it out, Ronald C. I’ll crawl away now…

I agree. Very, very talented. Handsome? Nah.

If you’re looking for handsome second bananas, I’m thinking Gig Young. I always feel so sad when he never gets Doris Day in the movies. Especially in Young at Heart.



I know, that was a bit of a stretch.

“There’s No Business like Show Business” with Marilyn Monroe and Ethel Merman

Yeah, it’s more that he had great performances in medium movies than been in great movies.

As for his looks, both me and my GF think he was a decent looking fellow. And we’re both straight. Just look at him again in that lip synching scene. He had good facial features, was in shape (except for the cigarrett smoking), and had killer eyes.

I think the perception of non handsomeness is probably more due the movies building on his comic abilities rather than trying to market him as a leading man. Just watch how often he over does facial expressions, whether in comic scenes or serious. It’s as tho they coached him to completely obviously be a certain emotion instead of simply having him act out the scene. And, more often than not, it seems, his “emotion” was comic in some way or another.

Really, compared to some others who were used as leading men in that era (Dan Johnson and Jimmy Stewart come readily to mind), he wasn’t lacking.

As usual in Cafe Society, IMHO, YMMV

Crap. I try to start an appreciation thread for Laura Nyro and it’s like pullin’ teeth. Now here’s one on Donald-freakin-O’Connor and there’s 15 freakin replies.

O’Connor? I could never tell him apart from Danny Kaye.

Excuse me, I’m gonna go pour another bourbon and put on Christmas and the Beads of Sweat.

He was a badass in “Make 'Em Laugh.” As awesome as Gene Kelly is, O’Connor really puts Singin’ In the Rain over the top as the greatest Hollywood musical ever.

“Hey, Cosmo, do something will ya? Call me a cab!”

“Okay, you’re a cab.”


Did she ever dance up and through walls? :wink:

Enjoy the bourbon,

If you want impressive, rewatch the “Good Morning” sequence and consider that Debbie Reynolds had no dancing experience.