Eddie Cantor

Eddie Cantor

At one time, when the rights to The Wizard of Oz (1939) were owned by Samuel Goldwyn, Cantor was considered for the role of the Scarecrow. Goldwyn eventually sold the rights to Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.

Biography in: "Who's Who in Comedy" by Ronald L. Smith. Pg. 89-91. New York: Facts on File, 1992. ISBN 0816023387

Both his parents died before he was a year old, and he was adopted and raised by his maternal grandmother, Esther Lazarowitz Kantrowitz, who died on January 29, 1917, two days before he signed a long-term contract with Florenz Ziegfeld Jr. to appear in his "Follies". "Kantrowitz" was the name mistakenly assigned to the boy instead of his actual name, Iskowitz, by a public school registrar. It was shortened to Cantor. Eddie was the nickname given him by his girlfriend, Ida Tobias, whom he later married (See Ida Tobias Cantor).

Brother-in-law of Nettie Tobias.

Eddie Cantor is a recurring character on HBO's series Boardwalk Empire, where he is played by Stephen DeRosa. He appeared in three episodes of the show's first season.

Father of Marilyn Cantor Baker, Marjorie Cantor, Natalie Cantor Metzger, Edna Cantor McHugh and Janet Cantor Gari

Father-in-law of Robert Clary.

Following his financial loss in the stock market crash of 1929, Eddie Cantor wrote a short humorous book entitled, "Caught Short."

Grandfather of Brian Gari and Judy McHugh

Great-grandfather of Lee Newman.

He invented the name "March of Dimes" for the donation campaigns of the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis (polio), a play on the "March of Time" newsreels. He began the first campaign on his own radio show in January 1938, asking people to mail a dime to the nation's most famous polio victim, President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Other entertainers joined in the appeal via their own shows, and the White House mail room was deluged with 2,680,000 dimes.

He was awarded 3 Stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for Motion Pictures at 6648 Hollywood Boulevard; for Television at 1710 Vine Street; and for Radio at 6765 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California.

Inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame in 2000.

Often ate the breakfast staple cornflakes and milk for dinner at fancy restaurants. It had been the foodstuff he could afford as an up-and-coming comedian, and due to some personal quirk, he preferred it even after he was rich and famous.

President of Screen Actors Guild (SAG) from 1933-35.

Received a Special Academy Award in 1956 for distinguished service to the film industry.

Theme song: "One Hour With You."