George Chiles - KING OF JAZZ

Open, general discussion of classic sound-era films, personalities and history.
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busby1959

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George Chiles - KING OF JAZZ

PostSat May 21, 2016 9:55 am

Does anybody know anything about this gentleman? Evidently KING OF JAZZ was the only film he appeared in - he sang "Ragamuffin Romeo" with Jeanie Lang and danced with The Sisters G in the "It Happened In Monteray" number. He was a very pleasant singer and quite easy on the eyes as well, but I cannot find anything about him on the Internet.
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Harold Aherne

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Re: George Chiles - KING OF JAZZ

PostSun May 22, 2016 12:33 am

George Hamilton Chiles was born to John Henry Chiles and Mary Hamilton Maloney Chiles on 5 February 1903, according to his delayed certificate of birth from 1928 (which also tells us that the attending physician did *not* use a 1% silver nitrate solution in little George's eyes). He had an older brother named John H. Chiles Jr. Austin, Texas was his hometown and where he would live for most of his days.

Most hits for George Chiles on the Media History Digital Library refer to KOJ, but Variety also mentioned his activities as a dancer in July-August 1928 and May 1933. He was active in local theatre in Austin until at least April 1940; the census that year shows his occupation as "Director of amateur theatrical work—theatrical work for Junior Leagues".

He died of cirrhosis on 26 December 1951 in Austin. The death certificate shows his occupation as directing for the stage and indicates that he was never married. He was interred in Austin Memorial Park. Both of his parents survived him, as John lived until 1961 (age 95) and Mary until 1963 (age 87).

John Jr. lived until 1985, and we can only wonder if he was able to see KOJ again.

[Edited to add:] KOJ wouldn't be Chiles' last association with John Murray Anderson -- he also appeared in Anderson's 1932 London production Fanfare:
http://media.gettyimages.com/photos/17th-june-1932-bernard-clifton-rose-perfect-and-george-chiles-in-john-picture-id3426614

-HA
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busby1959

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Re: George Chiles - KING OF JAZZ

PostMon May 23, 2016 12:22 pm

My goodness! That's much more than I was expecting. I've been curious about him ever since I first saw the movie when I was a teenager in the late 1970s. Thank you so much!
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JayDannWalker

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Re: George Chiles - KING OF JAZZ

PostWed Feb 22, 2017 9:58 am

As a supporting actor in the early sound era in Hollywood, George Chiles may have danced in more than one of the early tinsel musicals assembly-line produced by all the studios during that period. A careful viewing of the popular Ethel Shutta 'Ten Gallon Hat' dance sequence in Whoopee! (1930) may give us a glimpse of him as one of the dancers, although this is not known with any certainty. Does anyone here have access to any detailed data about the film to possibly verify this?

He was apparently active in various Hollywood social sets of the time. The costume designer Orry-Kelly apparently knew Chiles and apparently he was also a friend of the Australian actor George Andre Beranger.

We know the identities of at least two of the female dancers in Whoopee! but biographical details about the other (female and male) dancers in this lively film number would be interesting, if this information has not long vanished into the mists of time - this is a film released 87 years ago...

See
Last edited by silentfilm on Wed Feb 22, 2017 12:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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