Joe Palooka was an American comic strip about a heavyweight boxing champion, created by cartoonist Ham Fisher. With various assistants and successors, the strip lasted for over half of a century with spin-offs to radio, movies, television and merchandising.
Joe Palooka made his movie debut in Palooka (1934) with Stuart Erwin in the title role, followed by a series of nine two-reel Vitaphone shorts (1936-37) starring Robert Norton as Joe and Shemp Howard as Knobby. He returned to the screen in 1946, when Monogram Pictures launched a series of 11 low-budget films. The Monogram films starred Joe Kirkwood, Jr. as Joe, Leon Errol as Knobby and Elyse Knox as society girl Ann Howe.
1. Palooka (1934) – Stuart Erwin & Jimmy Durante:
Palooka is a 1934 comedy film based on the comic strip, Joe Palooka, by Ham Fisher.
Joe Palooka (Stuart Erwin) is a naive young man whose father Pete (Robert Armstrong) was a champion boxer, but his lifestyle caused Joe's mother Mayme (Marjorie Rambeau) to leave him and to take young Joe to the country to raise him. But when a shady boxing manager (Jimmy Durante) discovers Joe's natural boxing talent, Joe decides to follow him to the big city, where he becomes a champion and begins to follow his father's path of debauchery, much of it including the glamorous cabaret singer Nina Madero (Lupe Velez). The film also stars William Cagney, the younger brother of actor James Cagney.
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