Mickey Rooney, versatile actor and master showman, dies at 93

Mon Apr 7, 2014 11:34am EDT
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By Bill Trott

(Reuters) - Actor Mickey Rooney, who became the United States' biggest movie star while a brash teenager in the 1930s and later a versatile character actor in a career that spanned 10 decades, died on Sunday of natural causes, Los Angeles authorities said. He was 93.

Rooney, who developed a reputation as a hard-partying, off-screen brat in his heyday and married eight times, died at his home in Los Angeles, the Los Angeles County coroner's office said, citing information from the Los Angeles Police Department.

"He was undoubtedly the most talented actor that ever lived.

There was nothing he couldn't do," said actress Margaret O'Brien, who recently worked with Rooney on a film adaption of Robert Louis Stevenson's "The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde."

Actress Rose Marie, a long-time friend of Rooney, said he was one of the greatest talents show business had ever had. "I shall miss him and the world shall miss him," she said in a statement.

Other stars took to Twitter to express their sadness about Rooney's death.

"RIP Mickey Rooney. We can only be awed and grateful for so many great performances," actress Mia Farrow said.

Actor William Shatner described him as "one of the greats," and author Anne Rice said he was not only an actor but a legend.   Continued...

Actor Mickey Rooney plays a piano at his home in Westlake Village, California in this February 14, 2007 file photo. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni/Files