Legend of the silver screen Mickey Rooney passed away over the weekend and Monday (April 7), “Today” ran a tribute to the late former child star.
In addition to some adorable footage of him as a very young boy performing on stage in a vaudeville show, there’s a clip of a much-older Rooney reminiscing about how at the age of 20, he was the biggest box office draw in the world — bigger than Clark Gable, bigger than Spencer Tracy. It was heady company in which to be included.
Rooney was a four-time Oscar nominee who received a special juvenile Academy Award and a lifetime achievement honorary Oscar. He also earned a Tony and an Emmy over his illustrious career.
The actor is survived by his eighth wife, Jan Chamberlain, his eight surviving children, two stepchildren and 19 grandchildren. He is preceded in death by his then-wife Barbara Ann Thomason, who was murdered in 1966, and a son, Tim Rooney, who died in 2006.