Login | Forgot Password? | Join the Community
George Burns ACTOR

George Burns was born on January 20th, 1896 in New York City, New York with the birth name Nathan Birnbaum.  His parents were Louis and Dorothy Birnbaum and he was the ninth of a total of twelve children born in his family.  Sadly, his father passed away in 1903 during the flu epidemic and Burns had to help the family financially by working such jobs as a syrup maker, selling newspapers and even worked in a candy shop when he was only eleven years old.
He first realized that he enjoyed performing when along with a group of friends, they formed a singing group and called themselves the Pee-Wee Quartet.  They would sing on street corners, ferryboats, brothels and saloons and collect tips.
By the fourth grade he decided to quite school and pursue a career full time in entertainment.  His career consisted of work in vaudeville, radio, television, film and stage performing.   He would normally partner with a young lady and perform dance routines and later comedy performances.
It was working with his second wife, Gracie that gained him popularity as a performer in the industry.  The team performed together at the Palace Theatre in New York.  Originally, she was actually engaged to another performer, however, he persisted to earn her love and the couple finally wed and continued performing together.  They had a very popular radio show together, "Burns and Allen" (1937-1945) and were gaining a huge fan following. 
The couple easily made the transition from stage performing to motion pictures appearing together in such films as, "The Big Broadcast International House" (1933), "Six of a Kind" (1934), "The Big Broadcast of 1936", "The Big Broadcast of 1937", "A Damsel in Distress" (1937), "College Swing" (1938) and their biggest hit, "Road to Singapore" (1940).
Television followed with the, "The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show" which aired on CBS from 1950 through 1958 and finally, faces to their radio program were being put together for viewers.  When Gracie become to ill to film due to heart conditions, Burns proceeded without her but it was not the same and a year later the show was canceled. 
Along with acting along with his wife, they formed a production company called, McCadden Corporation which produced television, films and commercials.  They produced such shows as, "The Bob Cummings Show", "The People's Choice" and "Mister Ed".  When he lost his wife he submerged himself in his work and produced more shows such as, "No Time for Sergeants" and "Mona McCluskey".
He also continued acting and some of his latest roles were in such films as, "The Sunshine Boys" (1974), for which he became the oldest actor at the age of eighty to win an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor and revived his career in the industry.  He remained working appearing on, "Oh God!" (1977), "Just You and Me Kids" (1979), "Oh God! You Devil" (1984), "18 Again!" (1988) and his final role was in, "Radioland Murders" (1994).
George earned a number of honors throughout his career in the industry such as being awarded three stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his contribution to Live Theatre, Motion Pictures and the Television industry.  Also, along with his wife Gracie, they were pictured together on a 44 cent USA commemorative postage stamp.
Along with his career in entertainment, Burns was also a writer.  He wrote the book, 'They Still Love Me in Altoona'.  In total he became the best selling author of ten novels such as, "The Third Time Around" (1980), "Dear George" (1985), "Gracie: A Love Story" (1988) and 100 Years 100 Stories (1996) among others.   
He had married twice throughout his lifetime.  His first wife was Hannah Siegal, but this was just so that he and Hannah could tour together with their ballroom dance act.  After three months of being married, the marriage came to an end.  He then married Gracie Allen in 1926 and they remained married and adopted two children together.  Gracie Allen passed away in 1964 from a fatal heart attack and Burns did not re-marry. 
In 1994 he suffered a fall and was never able to fully recover from the incident.  He underwent surgery to remove fluid in his skull and at the age of ninety nine he made his final public appearance unveiling a street named in his honor.  On March 9th, 1996 he passed away at the age of one hundred in Beverly Hills, California from natural causes.  His remains are interred beside his wife at Forest Lawn Cemetery in Glendale, California. 


1994 Radioland Murders
1988 18 Again! 
1984 Oh, God! You Devil
1983 Grandpa, Will You Run with Me?
1982 Two of a Kind 
1980 Oh, God! Book II 
1979 Going in Style 
1979 Just You and Me, Kid 
1978 Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
1977 Oh, God!
1975 Ellery Queen 
1975 The Sunshine Boys
1968 That's Life
1968 Carnival Nights
1967 All About People
1964-1965 Wendy and Me
1964 The Jack Benny Program
1962-1963 Mister Ed
1959 G.E. True Theater 
1958-1959 The George Burns Show
1955-1958 The Bob Cummings Show
1950-1958 The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show 
1956 The Solid Gold Cadillac
1956 Shower of Stars 
1939 Honolulu 
1938 College Swing
1937-1945 Burns and Allen
1937 A Damsel in Distress
1936 College Holiday
1936 The Big Broadcast of 1937
1935 The Big Broadcast of 1936 
1935 Love in Bloom 
1934 Many Happy Returns 
1934 We're Not Dressing 
1934 Six of a Kind 
1933 College Humor 
1933 International House
1933 Walking the Baby 
1933 Let's Dance 
1932 Your Hat 
1932 The Big Broadcast 
1932 The Babbling Book
1932 Oh, My Operation 
1931 100% Service 
1931 Once Over, Light
1931 The Antique Shop 
1931 Pulling a Bone 
1930 Fit to Be Tied
1929 Lambchops

Matinee Classics - George Burns and Gracie Allen
Matinee Classics - George Burns and Gracie Allen on CBS radio
Matinee Classics - Maxwell House Coffee Time Radio Show starring George Burns, Gracie Allen, Frances Langford, Sam Edwards and Earle Ross

Copyright © 2014 Matinee Classics LLC - All Rights Reserved. Developed by: VividConcept.com