Wednesday, May 25, 2011
AKA Bill Bojangles Robinson, born on May 25, 1878. First, a deleted scene [sigh] which shows him as he is best remembered: suave, sophisticated, and amazingly musical. But old Hollywood was hardly a racially enlightened environment, and most of the preserved clips of Robinson show him as anything but urbane and cool. But the cool cuts to the core, and it shows even when he's working with his most popular partner, Shirley Temple. She's cute, but he's astounding. In the solo section he is all over those stairs, and note that he makes all the music himself.