Ginger Rogers, born Virginia Katherine McMath (July 16, 1911 April 25, 1995) was an American actor, singer and dancer who appeared in a lot of films (a total of seventy-three), television and stage shows over her career but is mostly remembered for her musical films — particularly her ten films with Fred Astaire, where she starred with him as his love interest.
Rogers was born in Independence, Missouri and raised in Fort Worth, Texas. After winning a dance competition, she made her way through stage musicals and landed herself numerous film roles in 1929 and eventually partnered up with Fred Astaire in 1933, creating some of the most beautiful dance routines ever filmed and, with him, revolutionizing the genre. With the above quote from the Frank and Ernest comic strip becoming a popular meme, Rogers gained a popular reputation of being perhaps even more skilled a dancer than Astaire with the aforementioned handicaps in her performance.
Some of her Filmography:
- 42nd Street (1933)
- Gold Diggers of 1933 (1933)
- Flying Down to Rio (1933)
- Rafter Romance (1933)
- The Gay Divorcee (1934)
- Roberta (1934)
- Star of Midnight (1935)
- Top Hat (1935)
- Follow the Fleet (1936)
- Swing Time (1936)
- Shall We Dance? (1937)
- Stage Door (1937)
- Having Wonderful Time (1938)
- Vivacious Lady (1938)
- Carefree (1938)
- Bachelor Mother (1939)
- The Story of Vernon and Irene Castle (1939)
- Kitty Foyle (1940) - she won an Academy Award for Best Actress
- The Major and the Minor (1942)
- Once Upon a Honeymoon (1942)
- I'll Be Seeing You (1944)
- Lady in the Dark (1944)
- The Barkleys of Broadway (1949)
- Monkey Business (1952)
- Cinderella (1965)
- Dancing Royalty: It's been said in gossip magazines that she and Fred would often clear dance-floors in Hollywood nightclubs whenever they went out together.
- Pimped-Out Dress: She wore a stunning array of these in her various films, as well as a few Simple, yet Opulent ones.
- She got into an argument with Fred Astaire on Top Hat because she insisted on wearing a beautiful feathered dress that wasn't sturdy enough to survive their dance number.
- Pretty in Mink: She also wore a number of furs in her movies, even dancing in a few (such as the mink skirt in Lady in the Dark).
- Stage Names: Rogers got her name differently to most Hollywood stars at her time that had to be created by the studios. She got the nickname "Ginger" when she was 5 years old and staying with an aunt, uncle, and even younger cousin. The cousin called her Ginger because the cousin couldn't yet pronounce the letter V. Ginger's parents were divorced before she was born and her mother later remarried to a man named Rogers, hence "Ginger Rogers" was the name she had for most of her childhood. She didn't even think of it as a stage name, planning on getting a different one when her career began to take off on Broadway. Her show's producer and director talked her out of it, because they loved her name, especially because she looked and sounded just like a "Ginger Rogers".
- What Beautiful Eyes!: See for yourself.◊ Rogers herself noted that both of her parents had beautiful blue eyes too, which many people pointed out.