Tag Archives: Mantan Moreland

Born in Monroe, Louisiana to Frank, an old-time Dixie band leader, and Marcella Moreland began acting by the time he was an adolescent, running away to join a minstrel show in 1910. By the late 1920s, he had made his way through vaudeville, working with various shows and revues, performing on Broadway and touring Europe. Initially, Moreland appeared in low-budget “race movies” aimed at African-American audiences, but as his comedic talents came to be recognized, he received roles in larger productions.

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Irish Luck (1939)

Buzzy O’Brien (Frankie Darro) is a bellhop in a hotel where a guest is murdered. He teams up with Jefferson (Mantan Moreland) and wants to protect Kitty Monahan(Sheila Darcy), who he only protects because her name is Kitty Monahan. The police blame Kitty for the murder and Buzzy hides her at his home with his mother (Lillian Elliott). Based on Charles Molyneaux Brown’s story “Death Hops the Bells.

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Chasing Trouble (1940)

This time Buzzy O’Brien (Frankie Darro) is a florists delivery boy. He still thinks he’s a detective though and finds out that his boss was in a foreign espionage ring. Only Buzzy, with his sometime faithful companion Jefferson (Mantan Moreland) can crack the ring and save the day.