Minta Durfee

D.O.B: Oct 01, 1889 |  Los Angeles, California, USA

17Credit Score

Early silent screen comedienne Araminta Durfee, started out as a chorus girl. In 1908, she began on stage in musical revue and in August that year married comedian Roscoe Fatty Arbuckle.

Biography

Early silent screen comedienne Araminta Durfee, started out as a chorus girl. In 1908, she began on stage in musical revue and in August that year married comedian Roscoe Fatty Arbuckle. In 1914, both players entered the fledgling film industry with Mack Sennett and were soon paired as a comedy double. By that time, Charles Chaplin had arrived from England to join the troupe and Minta became his leading lady in the two-reeler Making a Living (1914). The pairing was prompted by Mack Sennett, who found the new arrival very peculiar and felt it necessary to counterbalance his eccentricities with an actress who had a reputation for being able to get along with everybody. In addition to the series of Fatty shorts, Minta also worked at Keystone in the classic Tillies Punctured Romance (1914). She co-starred opposite the likes of Chester Conklin, Mack Swain and Ford Sterling, in a series of outrageous daredevil comedies until 1916. A popular story goes, that director Wilfred Lucas bribed her with the bonus of a pet dog to hang suspended from a bridge, held only by a piano wire (Love, Speed and Thrills (1915)). Minta and Fatty Arbuckle separated in 1921, just prior to the scandal over the death of Virginia Rappe which destroyed her husbands career. In spite of divorcing him in 1925, Minta nonetheless remained Arbuckles staunchest defender during three well-publicized trials and throughout her remaining life. In later years, Minta reminisced about the heyday of silent comedy in a series of interviews. She described most of her fellow players at Sennett, including her husband and comedienne Mabel Normand, as being extremely shy when not on the job, as well as making several candid, not always complimentary, revelations about Charlie Chaplins personal idiosyncrasies.