Three Stooges

Three Stooges

Overview
The Three Stooges were an American vaudeville and comedy act of the early to mid–20th century best known for their numerous short subject
Short subject
A short film is any film not long enough to be considered a feature film. No consensus exists as to where that boundary is drawn: the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences defines a short film as "an original motion picture that has a running time of 40 minutes or less, including all...

 films. Their hallmark was physical farce
Farce
In theatre, a farce is a comedy which aims at entertaining the audience by means of unlikely, extravagant, and improbable situations, disguise and mistaken identity, verbal humour of varying degrees of sophistication, which may include word play, and a fast-paced plot whose speed usually increases,...

 and extreme slapstick
Slapstick
Slapstick is a type of comedy involving exaggerated violence and activities which may exceed the boundaries of common sense.- Origins :The phrase comes from the batacchio or bataccio — called the 'slap stick' in English — a club-like object composed of two wooden slats used in Commedia dell'arte...

. In films, the Stooges were commonly known by their first names: "Moe, Larry, and Curly" and "Moe, Larry, and Shemp," among other lineups. They first started as "Ted Healy and his Stooges" which contained Moe, Larry and Shemp.
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Quotations

"Moe, Larry, the cheese! Moe, Larry, the cheese!" (Curly in the 1935 short, Horses Collars)

"A hot stake is better than a cold chop." (Curly, on why he would rather be burned at the stake instead of decapitated)

"You nitwit!" (Moe, to others)

"Oh, you're an intelligent imbecile!" (Moe)

"Hey, Moe! Hey, Larry!" (Curly, Shemp)

"Anakanapuner!" (Moe, demanding a surgical instrument)

"Seenophran!" (Moe, demanding another surgical instrument)

"Cotton!!" (Stooges to each other whenever performing surgery)

"We're not normal people. We're morons. (Curly)

"Remind me to kill/murder you later!" (Moe, to others)

"I'll make a note of it!" (Larry or Curly)
Encyclopedia
The Three Stooges were an American vaudeville and comedy act of the early to mid–20th century best known for their numerous short subject
Short subject
A short film is any film not long enough to be considered a feature film. No consensus exists as to where that boundary is drawn: the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences defines a short film as "an original motion picture that has a running time of 40 minutes or less, including all...

 films. Their hallmark was physical farce
Farce
In theatre, a farce is a comedy which aims at entertaining the audience by means of unlikely, extravagant, and improbable situations, disguise and mistaken identity, verbal humour of varying degrees of sophistication, which may include word play, and a fast-paced plot whose speed usually increases,...

 and extreme slapstick
Slapstick
Slapstick is a type of comedy involving exaggerated violence and activities which may exceed the boundaries of common sense.- Origins :The phrase comes from the batacchio or bataccio — called the 'slap stick' in English — a club-like object composed of two wooden slats used in Commedia dell'arte...

. In films, the Stooges were commonly known by their first names: "Moe, Larry, and Curly" and "Moe, Larry, and Shemp," among other lineups. They first started as "Ted Healy and his Stooges" which contained Moe, Larry and Shemp. "The Three Stooges" film trio was originally composed of Moe Howard
Moe Howard
Moses Harry Horwitz , known professionally as Moe Howard, was an American actor and comedian best known as the leader of The Three Stooges, the farce comedy team who starred in motion pictures and television for four decades...

, brother Curly Howard
Curly Howard
Jerome Lester "Jerry" Horwitz , better known by his stage name Curly Howard, was an American comedian and vaudevillian. He is best known as a member of the American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges, along with his older brothers Moe Howard and Shemp Howard, and actor Larry Fine...

 and Larry Fine
Larry Fine
Louis Feinberg , known professionally as Larry Fine, was an American comedian and actor, who is best known as a member of the comedy act The Three Stooges.-Early life:...

. Shemp Howard replaced brother Curly, when Curly suffered a debilitating stroke
Stroke
A stroke, previously known medically as a cerebrovascular accident , is the rapidly developing loss of brain function due to disturbance in the blood supply to the brain. This can be due to ischemia caused by blockage , or a hemorrhage...

 in May 1946.

After Shemp's death from a heart attack
Myocardial infarction
Myocardial infarction or acute myocardial infarction , commonly known as a heart attack, results from the interruption of blood supply to a part of the heart, causing heart cells to die...

 in November 1955, he was replaced by comedian Joe Besser
Joe Besser
Joe Besser was an American comedian, known for his impish humor and wimpy characters, and is now best remembered for his brief stint as a member of the Three Stooges in movie short subjects of 1957-59...

, after the use of film actor Joe Palma
Joe Palma
Joe Palma was an American film actor. Born in New York, New York, Palma appeared in over 120 films between 1937 and 1968.-Early years:...

 to film four Shemp-era shorts. Ultimately, Joe DeRita (nicknamed "Curly Joe") replaced Joe Besser by 1958. The act regained momentum throughout the 1960s as popular kiddie fare until Larry Fine's paralyzing stroke
Stroke
A stroke, previously known medically as a cerebrovascular accident , is the rapidly developing loss of brain function due to disturbance in the blood supply to the brain. This can be due to ischemia caused by blockage , or a hemorrhage...

 in January 1970 effectively marked the end of the act proper. Moe tried unsuccessfully one final time to revive the Stooges with longtime supporting actor Emil Sitka
Emil Sitka
Emil Sitka was a veteran American actor who appeared in hundreds of movies, short films, and television shows, and is best known for his numerous appearances with the Three Stooges—nearly 40...

 filling in for Larry. Larry ultimately succumbed to a series of additional strokes in January 1975, followed by Moe, who died of lung cancer
Lung cancer
Lung cancer is a disease characterized by uncontrolled cell growth in tissues of the lung. If left untreated, this growth can spread beyond the lung in a process called metastasis into nearby tissue and, eventually, into other parts of the body. Most cancers that start in lung, known as primary...

 in May 1975.

Ted Healy and his stooges


The Three Stooges started in 1925 as part of a raucous vaudeville
Vaudeville
Vaudeville was a theatrical genre of variety entertainment in the United States and Canada from the early 1880s until the early 1930s. Each performance was made up of a series of separate, unrelated acts grouped together on a common bill...

 act called 'Ted Healy
Ted Healy
Ted Healy was an American vaudeville performer, comedian, and actor. He is chiefly remembered today as the original creator of the Three Stooges, but had a successful stage and film career of his own.- Early life :...

 and His Stooges' (a.k.a. 'Ted Healy and His Southern Gentlemen', 'Ted Healy and His Three Lost Souls' and 'Ted Healy and His Racketeers'—the moniker 'Three Stooges' was never used during their tenure with Healy). In the act, lead comedian Healy would attempt to sing or tell joke
Joke
A joke is a phrase or a paragraph with a humorous twist. It can be in many different forms, such as a question or short story. To achieve this end, jokes may employ irony, sarcasm, word play and other devices...

s while his noisy assistants would keep "interrupting" him. Healy would respond by verbally and physically abusing his stooges. Brothers Moe and Shemp were joined later that year by violinist-comedian Larry Fine
Larry Fine
Louis Feinberg , known professionally as Larry Fine, was an American comedian and actor, who is best known as a member of the comedy act The Three Stooges.-Early life:...

, and Fred Sanborn
Fred Sanborn
Fred Sanborn was an American vaudeville performer, actor, and musician. He was most notable as a member of Ted Healy's comedy troupe Ted Healy and his Southern Gentlemen .Sanborn appeared frequently in the group's early stage acts...

 joined the group as well.

In 1930, Ted Healy and His Stooges (including Sanborn) appeared in their first Hollywood feature film, Soup to Nuts
Soup to Nuts
Soup to Nuts is an American feature film written by Rube Goldberg and directed by Benjamin Stoloff, which marks the film debut of the comic trio who would go on to become known as the Three Stooges...

, released by Fox Film Corporation. The film was not a critical success, but the Stooges' performances were singled out as memorable, leading Fox to offer the trio a contract minus Healy. This enraged the prickly Healy, who told studio executives that the Stooges were his employees. The offer was withdrawn, and after Howard, Fine and Howard learned of the reason, they left Healy to form their own act, which quickly took off with a tour of the theatre circuit. Healy attempted to stop the new act with legal action, claiming they were using his copyrighted material. There are accounts of Healy threatening to bomb theaters if Howard, Fine and Howard ever performed there, which worried Shemp so much that he almost left the act; reportedly, only a pay raise kept him on board. Healy tried to save his act by hiring replacement stooges, but they were inexperienced and not as well-received as their predecessors. In 1932, with Moe now acting as business manager, Healy reached a new agreement with his former Stooges, and they were booked in a production of Jacob J. Shubert's
Jacob J. Shubert
Jacob J. Shubert was naturalized American theatre owner/operator and producer and a member of the famous theatrical Shubert family....

 The Passing Show of 1932. During rehearsals, Healy received a more lucrative offer and found a loophole in his contract allowing him to leave the production. Shemp, fed up with Healy's abrasiveness, decided to quit the act and found work almost immediately, in Vitaphone movie comedies produced in Brooklyn
Brooklyn
Brooklyn is the most populous of New York City's five boroughs, with nearly 2.6 million residents, and the second-largest in area. Since 1896, Brooklyn has had the same boundaries as Kings County, which is now the most populous county in New York State and the second-most densely populated...

, New York.

With Shemp gone, Healy and the two remaining stooges (Moe and Larry) needed a replacement, so Moe suggested his younger brother Jerry Howard. Healy reportedly took one look at Jerry, who had long chestnut red locks and a handlebar mustache, and remarked that he did not look like he was funny. Jerry left the room and returned a few moments later with his head shaved (though his mustache remained for a time), and then quipped "Boy, do I look girly." Healy heard "Curly," and the name stuck. (There are varying accounts as to how the Curly character actually came about.)

In 1933, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc. is an American media company, involved primarily in the production and distribution of films and television programs. MGM was founded in 1924 when the entertainment entrepreneur Marcus Loew gained control of Metro Pictures, Goldwyn Pictures Corporation and Louis B. Mayer...

 (MGM) signed Healy and his Stooges to a movie contract. They appeared in feature films and short subjects, either together, individually, or with various combinations of actors. The trio was featured in a series of musical comedy shorts, beginning with Nertsery Rhymes
Nertsery Rhymes
Nertsery Rhymes is the first short film starring "Ted Healy and His Stooges", a musical comedy released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Some footage was from the unfinished MGM musical The March of Time , which was originally to feature Healy and the Three Stooges.-Synopsis:The Stooges are children and...

. The short was one of a few shorts to be made with an early two-strip Technicolor
Technicolor
Technicolor is a color motion picture process invented in 1916 and improved over several decades.It was the second major process, after Britain's Kinemacolor, and the most widely used color process in Hollywood from 1922 to 1952...

 process, including one featuring Curly without Healy or the other Stooges, Roast Beef and Movies
Roast Beef and Movies
Roast Beef and Movies is a short subject starring George Givot, along with Curly Howard , Bobby Callahan, and the Albertina Rasch Dancers...

 (1934). The shorts themselves were built around recycled film footage of production numbers cut from MGM musicals, such as Children of Pleasure
Children of Pleasure
Children of Pleasure is a 1930 American MGM musical comedy film directed by Harry Beaumont originally released with Technicolor sequences. It was adapted from Crane Wilbur's stage success of 1929 The Song Writer.-Plot:...

, Lord Byron of Broadway
Lord Byron of Broadway
Lord Byron of Broadway , also known as What Price Melody?, is an American musical drama film, directed by Harry Beaumont and William Nigh...

, and the unfinished March of Time
The March of Time (MGM musical)
The March of Time was the title of a planned Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer musical film originally scheduled to be released in September 1930. Production of this early film, which would have been one of the first musicals filmed in two-color Technicolor, was abandoned, although a number of musical numbers...

 (all 1930), which had been filmed in early Technicolor. Soon, additional shorts followed (sans the experimental Technicolor), including Beer and Pretzels
Beer and Pretzels
Beer and Pretzels is the second of five short subjects starring Ted Healy and His Stooges released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. A musical-comedy film, the short also featured Bonnie Bonnell, Healy's girlfriend at the time.-Plot:...

 (1933), Plane Nuts
Plane Nuts
Plane Nuts is the fourth of five short subjects starring Ted Healy and His Stooges released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. A musical-comedy film, the short also featured Bonnie Bonnell as Healy's love interest....

 (1933), and The Big Idea
The Big Idea (film)
The Big Idea is a short film released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer , starring Ted Healy and His Stooges: Moe Howard, Larry Fine, and Curly Howard.-Production:...

 (1934).

Healy and company also appeared in several MGM feature films as comic relief, such as Turn Back the Clock
Turn Back the Clock (film)
Turn Back the Clock is an MGM comedy drama film directed by Edgar Selwyn, written by Edgar Selwyn and Ben Hecht, and starring by Lee Tracy and Mae Clarke...

 (1933), Meet the Baron
Meet the Baron
Meet the Baron is a comedy film starring Jack Pearl, Jimmy Durante, Edna May Oliver, Zasu Pitts, Ted Healy and the Three Stooges.-Plot:...

 (1933), Dancing Lady
Dancing Lady
Dancing Lady is a 1933 musical film starring Joan Crawford and Clark Gable, and featuring Franchot Tone, the fourth of eight collaborations between Crawford and Gable. It was directed by Robert Z. Leonard, produced by John W. Considine Jr. and David O. Selznick, and was based on the novel of the...

 (1933), Fugitive Lovers (1934), and Hollywood Party
Hollywood Party (1934 film)
Hollywood Party is a musical film starring Jimmy Durante. It was distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. The film had no director credited, although it has been asserted that Richard Boleslawski, Allan Dwan, Edmund Goulding, Russell Mack, Charles Reisner, Roy Rowland, George Stevens and Sam Wood...

 (1934). Healy and the Stooges also appeared together in Myrt and Marge for Universal Pictures
Universal Studios
Universal Pictures , a subsidiary of NBCUniversal, is one of the six major movie studios....

.

In 1934, the team's contract with MGM expired, and the Stooges parted professional company with Healy. According to Moe Howard's autobiography, the Stooges split with Ted Healy in 1934 once and for all because of Healy's alcoholism and abrasiveness. Their final film with Healy was MGM’s 1934 film, Hollywood Party
Hollywood Party (1934 film)
Hollywood Party is a musical film starring Jimmy Durante. It was distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. The film had no director credited, although it has been asserted that Richard Boleslawski, Allan Dwan, Edmund Goulding, Russell Mack, Charles Reisner, Roy Rowland, George Stevens and Sam Wood...

. Both Healy and the Stooges went on to separate successes, with Healy dying under mysterious circumstances in 1937.

Moe, Larry and Curly


In 1934, the trio – now officially christened "The Three Stooges" – signed on to appear in two-reel comedy short subjects for Columbia Pictures
Columbia Pictures
Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. is an American film production and distribution company. Columbia Pictures now forms part of the Columbia TriStar Motion Picture Group, owned by Sony Pictures Entertainment, a subsidiary of the Japanese conglomerate Sony. It is one of the leading film companies...

. In Moe's autobiography, he said they each got $600 per week on a one-year contract with a renewable option; in the Ted Okuda
Ted Okuda
Ted Okuda is an American non-fiction author and film historian. He has many books and magazine features to his credit, under his own name and in collaboration with others.-Career:...

–Edward Watz book The Columbia Comedy Shorts, the Stooges are said to have received $1,000 between them for their first Columbia effort, Woman Haters
Woman Haters
Woman Haters is the first short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, and then signed a term contract for $7,500 per film, to be divided among the trio.

Within their first year at Columbia, the Stooges became wildly popular. Realizing this, Columbia Pictures president Harry Cohn
Harry Cohn
Harry Cohn was the American president and production director of Columbia Pictures.-Career:Cohn was born to a working-class German-Jewish family in New York City. In later years, he appears to have disparaged his heritage...

 used the Stooges as leverage, as the demand for their films was so great that Columbia eventually refused to supply exhibitors with the trio's shorts unless they also agreed to book some of the studio's mediocre B movie
B movie
A B movie is a low-budget commercial motion picture that is not definitively an arthouse or pornographic film. In its original usage, during the Golden Age of Hollywood, the term more precisely identified a film intended for distribution as the less-publicized, bottom half of a double feature....

s. Cohn also saw to it that the Stooges remain ignorant of their popularity. During their 23 years spent at Columbia, the Stooges were never completely aware of their amazing drawing power at the box office. As their contracts with the studio included an open option that had to be renewed every year, Cohn would tell the boys that the short subjects were in decline, which was not a complete fabrication (Cohn's yearly mantra was "the market for comedy shorts is dying out, fellahs.") Thinking their days were numbered, the Stooges would sweat it out each and every year, with Cohn renewing their contract for another year at the eleventh hour. This cruel deception kept the insecure Stooges unaware of their true value, resulting in them having second thoughts about asking for a better contract without a yearly option. Cohn's scare tactics worked for all 23 years the Stooges were at Columbia; the team never once asked for — nor were they ever given — a salary increase. It was not until after they stopped making the shorts in December 1957 did Moe learn of Cohn's underhanded tactics, what a valuable commodity the Stooges had been for the ailing studio, and how many millions more the act could have earned.

The Stooges were required to churn out up to eight short films per year within a 40-week period; for the remaining 12 or so weeks, they were free to pursue other employment. Usually, the Stooges would either spend this time with their families or tour the country promoting their live act. The Stooges appeared in 190 film shorts and five features while at Columbia. Del Lord
Del Lord
Del Lord was a Canadian film director and actor best known as a director of Three Stooges films.-Career:Delmer Lord was born in the small town of Grimsby, Ontario, Canada...

 directed more than three dozen Stooge films; Jules White
Jules White
Jules White born Julius Weiss was a film director and producer best known for his short-subject comedies starring the Three Stooges.-Early years:...

 directed dozens more, and his brother Jack White
Jack White (film producer)
Jack White was an American film producer, director and writer. His career with film began in the late 1910s and continued until the early 1960s. White produced over 300 films; directed more than 60 of these, and wrote more than 50...

 directed several under the pseudonym
Pseudonym
A pseudonym is a name that a person assumes for a particular purpose and that differs from his or her original orthonym...

 "Preston Black". Silent film star Charley Chase
Charley Chase
Charley Chase was an American comedian, actor, screenwriter and film director, best known for his work in Hal Roach short film comedies...

 also shared directorial responsibilities with Lord and White, with more than pleasing results.

The Stooge films made between 1935-1941 captured the team at the peak. Nearly every film produced became a classic in its own right. 1935's Hoi Polloi
Hoi Polloi (1935 film)
Hoi Polloi is the tenth short film starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 utilized the classic premise of a stuffy professor waging a bet that he can transform the uncultered trio into refined gentlemen. Three Little Beers
Three Little Beers
Three Little Beers is the 11th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 featured the team employed at a brewery who then run amuck on a local golf course to win prize money. 1936's Disorder in the Court
Disorder in the Court
Disorder in the Court is the 15th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 is considered a quintessential entry in the series, featuring the team as star witnesses to a murder trial. 1938's Violent is the Word for Curly
Violent Is the Word for Curly
Violent Is the Word for Curly is the 32nd short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 was a quality Chase-directed short that featured a delightful musical interlude, "Swingin' the Alphabet". The team's 1940 film A Plumbing We Will Go
A Plumbing We Will Go
A Plumbing We Will Go is the 46th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, was a near perfect entry. The trio are cast as inadvertent plumbers who nearly destroy a socialite's mansion, complete with water exiting every appliance in the home. Other entries of the era, like Uncivil Warriors
Uncivil Warriors
Uncivil Warriors is the eighth short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, A Pain in the Pullman
A Pain in the Pullman
A Pain in the Pullman is the 16th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, False Alarms
False Alarms (1936 film)
False Alarms is the 17th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, Grips, Grunts and Groans
Grips, Grunts and Groans
Grips, Grunts and Groans is the 20th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, The Sitter Downers
The Sitter Downers
The Sitter Downers is the 27th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, Dizzy Doctors
Dizzy Doctors
Dizzy Doctors is the 21st short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, Tassels in the Air
Tassels in the Air
Tassels in the Air is the 30th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, We Want Our Mummy
We Want Our Mummy
We Want Our Mummy is the 37th short subject starring American slapstick team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:Two museum curators We Want Our Mummy is the 37th short subject starring American slapstick team the Three Stooges....

, Nutty but Nice
Nutty But Nice
Nutty but Nice is the 47th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team The Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, An Ache in Every Stake
An Ache in Every Stake
An Ache in Every Stake is the 57th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 and In the Sweet Pie and Pie
In the Sweet Pie and Pie
In the Sweet Pie and Pie is the 58th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 rank among the team's finest work.

With the onset of World War II, the Stooges released several entries that poked fun at the rising Axis powers. You Nazty Spy! and its sequel I'll Never Heil Again
I'll Never Heil Again
I'll Never Heil Again is the 56th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 burlesqued Hitler and the Nazis at a time when America was still neutral and resolutely isolationist. Moe is cast as "Moe Hailstone", an Adolf Hitler
Adolf Hitler
Adolf Hitler was an Austrian-born German politician and the leader of the National Socialist German Workers Party , commonly referred to as the Nazi Party). He was Chancellor of Germany from 1933 to 1945, and head of state from 1934 to 1945...

-like character, with Curly playing a Hermann Goering
Hermann Göring
Hermann Wilhelm Göring, was a German politician, military leader, and a leading member of the Nazi Party. He was a veteran of World War I as an ace fighter pilot, and a recipient of the coveted Pour le Mérite, also known as "The Blue Max"...

 character (replete with medals), and Larry a Ribbentrop-type ambassador. Though revered by Stooge fans, as well as the Stooges themselves (Moe, Larry and director Jules White considered You Nazty Spy! their best film), the efforts indulged in a deliberately formless, non-sequitur style of verbal humor that was not the Stooges' forte. Other wartime entries, like They Stooge to Conga
They Stooge to Conga
They Stooge to Conga is the 67th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, Higher Than a Kite
Higher Than a Kite
Higher Than a Kite is the 72nd short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, Back From the Front
Back from the Front
Back From the Front is the 70th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, Gents Without Cents
Gents Without Cents
Gents Without Cents is the 81st short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 and the controversial The Yoke's on Me
The Yoke's on Me
The Yoke's on Me is the 79th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 have their moments, but taken in bulk, the wartime films are decidedly substandard. No Dough Boys
No Dough Boys
No Dough Boys is the 82nd short subject starring the slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 ranks as the best of these farces. The team, made up as Japanese soldiers for a photo shoot, are mistaken for genuine saboteurs by a Nazi ringleader (Vernon Dent
Vernon Dent
Vernon Bruce Dent was a comic actor who appeared in over 400 films in his career. He co-starred in many short films for Columbia Pictures, frequently as the foil to the Three Stooges.-Early career:...

). The highlight of the film features the Stooges engaging in nonsensical gymnastics (the real spies are renown acrobats) for a skpetical group of enemy agents.

The Stooges made occasional guest appearances in feature films, though generally they stuck to short subjects. Columbia offered theater owners an entire program of two-reel comedies (15 to 25 titles annually) featuring such stars as Buster Keaton
Buster Keaton
Joseph Frank "Buster" Keaton was an American comic actor, filmmaker, producer and writer. He was best known for his silent films, in which his trademark was physical comedy with a consistently stoic, deadpan expression, earning him the nickname "The Great Stone Face".Keaton was recognized as the...

, Andy Clyde
Andy Clyde
Andy Clyde was a Scottish movie and TV actor whose career spanned more than four decades. He broke into silent films in 1925 as a Mack Sennett comic...

, Charley Chase
Charley Chase
Charley Chase was an American comedian, actor, screenwriter and film director, best known for his work in Hal Roach short film comedies...

, and Hugh Herbert
Hugh Herbert
Hugh Herbert was a motion picture comedian. He began his career in vaudeville, and wrote more than 150 plays and sketches.-Career:...

, but the Three Stooges shorts were the most popular of all.

The World War II era also brought on rising production costs that resulted in a reduced number of elaborate gags and outdoor sequences, Del Lord's stock and trade; as such, the quality of the teams' films (particularly those directed by Lord) began to slip after 1942. Entries like Loco Boy Makes Good
Loco Boy Makes Good
Loco Boy Makes Good is the 60th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.- Plot :...

, What's the Matador?
What's the Matador?
What's the Matador? is the 62nd short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.- Plot :...

, Sock-A-Bye Baby
Sock-a-Bye Baby
Sock-a-Bye Baby is the 66th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.- Plot :...

, I Can Hardly Wait
I Can Hardly Wait
"I Can Hardly Wait" is the 73rd short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 and A Gem of a Jam
A Gem of a Jam
A Gem of a Jam is the 76th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 were not particularly bad, but they were in a different class than their earlier efforts. Their worst film of the era was 1943's Spook Louder
Spook Louder
Spook Louder is the 69th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, a remake of Mack Sennett
Mack Sennett
Mack Sennett was a Canadian-born American director and was known as the innovator of slapstick comedy in film. During his lifetime he was known at times as the "King of Comedy"...

's The Great Pie Mystery. The story of a phantom pie-thrower (later revealed to be the detective on the case) is a repetitious one-joke affair devoid of humor. Three Smart Saps
Three Smart Saps
Three Smart Saps is the 64th short film starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.- Plot :...

 was one the better entries, featuring a clever reworking of a rountine from Harold Lloyd
Harold Lloyd
Harold Clayton Lloyd, Sr. was an American film actor and producer, most famous for his silent comedies....

's The Freshman
The Freshman (1925 film)
The Freshman is a 1925 comedy film that tells the story of a college freshman trying to become popular by joining the school football team. It stars Harold Lloyd, Jobyna Ralston, Brooks Benedict and James Anderson. It remains one of Lloyd's most successful and enduring films.The movie was written...

, in which Curly's loosely basted suit begins to come apart at the seams while he is on the dance floor.

Curly was easily the most popular member of the team. His childlike mannerisms and natural comedic charm (he had no previous acting experience) made him a hit with audiences. The fact that Curly had to shave his head for the act led him to feel unappealing to women. To mask his insecurities, Curly ate and drank excessively and caroused whenever the Stooges made personal appearances, which was approximately seven months out of the year. His weight ballooned in the 1940s, and his blood pressure was dangerously high. His wild lifestyle and constant drinking eventually caught up with him in 1945, and his performances suffered. In his last dozen shorts (ranging from 1945's If a Body Meets a Body
If a Body Meets a Body
If a Body Meets a Body is the 86th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 through 1947's Half-Wits Holiday
Half-Wits Holiday
Half-Wits Holiday is the 97th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team The Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

), he was seriously ill, struggling to get through even the most basic scenes.

It was during the final day of filming Half-Wits Holiday
Half-Wits Holiday
Half-Wits Holiday is the 97th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team The Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 on May 6, 1946 that Curly suffered a debilitating stroke on the set, ending his 14-year career. Curly's health necessitated a temporary retirement from the act, and while the Stooges hoped for a full recovery, Curly never starred in a film again, except for one brief cameo appearance in the third film after Shemp returned to the trio, Hold That Lion!
Hold That Lion!
Hold That Lion! is the 100th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 It was the only film that contained all four of the original Stooges (the three Howard brothers and Larry) on screen simultaneously; Jules White recalled Curly visiting the set one day, and White had him do this bit for fun. (Curly's cameo appearance was recycled in the 1953 remake Booty and the Beast
Booty and the Beast
Booty and the Beast is the 145th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

.) In 1949, Curly was supposed to play a cameo role in the Stooge comedy Malice in the Palace
Malice in the Palace
Malice in the Palace is the 117th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, but he was physically unable to perform. His chef role was played by Larry.

Shemp returns


Moe Howard turned to his older brother Shemp Howard to take Curly's place. Shemp, however, was hesitant to rejoin the Stooges, as he had a successful solo career at the time of Curly's untimely illness. However, he realized that Moe and Larry's careers would be finished without the Stooge act. Shemp wanted some kind of assurance that his rejoining was indeed temporary, and that he could leave the Stooges once Curly recovered. Unfortunately, Curly remained gravely ill after 1950, dying of a cerebral hemorrhage caused by additional strokes on January 18, 1952.

Shemp appeared with the Stooges in 76 more shorts and a quickie Western comedy feature titled Gold Raiders
Gold Raiders
Gold Raiders is a comedy Western film, directed by Edward Bernds with a script by B-movie writer William Lively and veteran comedy writer Elwood Ullman. The film was an attempt by independent producer Bernard Glasser to inaugurate a new western series starring George O'Brien, the lead in F. W....

. Upon Shemp's return, the quality of the films picked up; the last few Curly efforts had been marred by his sluggish performances. Entries like Out West
Out West (1947 film)
Out West is the 99th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, Squareheads of the Round Table
Squareheads of the Round Table
Squareheads of the Round Table is the 106th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, and Punchy Cowpunchers
Punchy Cowpunchers
Punchy Cowpunchers is the 120th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 proved that there was life after Curly, and that Shemp could easily hold his own. Though some say he lacked his younger brother's childlike charisma, Shemp was a gifted, professional comedian. More often than not, his astute gift of comedic timing buoys weak material. In fact, one the finest entries in the series, Brideless Groom
Brideless Groom
Brideless Groom is the 101st short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, was made during this period.

Another interesting plus from the Shemp era was that Larry was given more time on screen. Throughout most of the Curly era, Larry was relegated to a background role, only being called upon to break up a potential scuffle between Moe and Curly. By the time Shemp rejoined the Stooges, Larry was allotted equal footage, even becoming the focus of several films (Fuelin' Around
Fuelin' Around
Fuelin' Around is the 116th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, He Cooked His Goose
He Cooked His Goose
He Cooked His Goose is the 140th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

).

During this period, Moe, Larry, and Shemp made a pilot for a Three Stooges television show called Jerks of All Trades in 1949. The series was never picked up, although the pilot is currently in the public domain
Public domain
Works are in the public domain if the intellectual property rights have expired, if the intellectual property rights are forfeited, or if they are not covered by intellectual property rights at all...

 and is available on home video, as is an early television appearance from around the same time on a vaudeville
Vaudeville
Vaudeville was a theatrical genre of variety entertainment in the United States and Canada from the early 1880s until the early 1930s. Each performance was made up of a series of separate, unrelated acts grouped together on a common bill...

-style comedy series, Camel Comedy Caravan, originally broadcast live on CBS-TV
CBS
CBS Broadcasting Inc. is a major US commercial broadcasting television network, which started as a radio network. The name is derived from the initials of the network's former name, Columbia Broadcasting System. The network is sometimes referred to as the "Eye Network" in reference to the shape of...

 on March 11, 1950 and starring Ed Wynn
Ed Wynn
Ed Wynn was a popular American comedian and actor noted for his Perfect Fool comedy character, his pioneering radio show of the 1930s, and his later career as a dramatic actor....

. Also available commercially is a kinescope of Moe, Larry, and Shemp's appearance on The Frank Sinatra Show, broadcast live over CBS-TV on January 1, 1952. Frank Sinatra
Frank Sinatra
Francis Albert "Frank" Sinatra was an American singer and actor.Beginning his musical career in the swing era with Harry James and Tommy Dorsey, Sinatra became an unprecedentedly successful solo artist in the early to mid-1940s, after being signed to Columbia Records in 1943. Being the idol of the...

 was reportedly a big fan of the Stooges and slapstick comedy in general. On this broadcast, the Stooges are joined by one of their longtime stock-company members, Vernon Dent
Vernon Dent
Vernon Bruce Dent was a comic actor who appeared in over 400 films in his career. He co-starred in many short films for Columbia Pictures, frequently as the foil to the Three Stooges.-Early career:...

, who plays "Mr. Mortimer", a party-goer who requests a drink. The Stooges oblige with disastrous results.

Columbia's short-subject division downsized in 1952. Producer Hugh McCollum
Hugh McCollum
Hugh McCollum was an American film producer best known for his credits on Three Stooges short subject comedies.-Career:...

 was discharged and director Edward Bernds
Edward Bernds
Edward Bernds was an American screenwriter and director, born in Chicago, Illinois.-Career:While in his junior year in Lake View High School, he and several friends formed a small radio clique and obtained amateur licenses...

 resigned out of loyalty to McCollum, leaving only Jules White
Jules White
Jules White born Julius Weiss was a film director and producer best known for his short-subject comedies starring the Three Stooges.-Early years:...

 to both produce and direct the Stooges' remaining Columbia comedies. Almost overnight, the quality of the Stooge shorts declined. Production was significantly faster, with the former four-day filming schedules now tightened to two or three days. In another cost-cutting measure, White would create a "new" Stooge short by borrowing footage from old ones, setting it in a slightly different storyline, and filming a few new scenes often with the same actors in the same costumes. White was initially very subtle when recycling older footage: he would reuse only a single sequence of old film, re-edited so cleverly that it was not easy to detect. The later shorts were cheaper and the recycling more obvious, with as much as 75% of the running time consisting of old footage. White came to rely so much on older material that he could film the "new" shorts in a single day. Plus, any new footage filmed in order to link older material suffered from White's wooden directing and his penchant for telling his actors how to act. Shemp in particular disliked working with White.

Three years after Curly's death, Shemp died of a sudden heart attack at age 60 on November 22, 1955. Recycled footage of Shemp, combined with new footage utilizing Columbia supporting player Joe Palma
Joe Palma
Joe Palma was an American film actor. Born in New York, New York, Palma appeared in over 120 films between 1937 and 1968.-Early years:...

 as Shemp's double (only filmed from the back), were used to complete the last four films originally planned with Shemp: Rumpus in the Harem
Rumpus in the Harem
Rumpus in the Harem is the 171st short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, Hot Stuff
Hot Stuff (1956 film)
Hot Stuff is the 172nd short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, Scheming Schemers
Scheming Schemers
Scheming Schemers is the 173rd short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, and Commotion on the Ocean
Commotion on the Ocean
Commotion on the Ocean is the 174th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

.

Joe Besser replaces Shemp


Joe Besser
Joe Besser
Joe Besser was an American comedian, known for his impish humor and wimpy characters, and is now best remembered for his brief stint as a member of the Three Stooges in movie short subjects of 1957-59...

 replaced Shemp in 1956, appearing in 16 shorts. Besser, noting how one side of Larry Fine's face seemed "calloused", had a clause in his contract specifically prohibiting him from being hit too hard (though this restriction was later lifted). Besser was the only "third" Stooge that dared to hit Moe back in retaliation and get away with it; Larry Fine was also known to hit Moe on occasion, but always with serious repercussions. "I usually played the kind of character who would hit others back," Besser recalled.
With Besser on board, the Stooge films began to resemble sitcoms. Sitcoms, though, were now available for free. Television was the new popular medium, and by the time Besser joined the act, the Stooges were generally considered throwbacks to an obsolete era. The Besser films have long been considered the worst of the Stooge films. Though Besser was a very funny comedian (he was very popular on The Abbott and Costello Show
The Abbott and Costello Show
The Abbott and Costello Show is an American television sitcom starring the popular comedy team of Bud Abbott and Lou Costello that premiered in syndication in the fall of 1952 and ran until May 1954....

), his whining mannerisms ("Not so harrrrd!") did not quite jell with the roughneck Stooge humor. However, Besser was not solely to blame for the lackluster quality of these final entries: the scripts were tired rehashes of earlier efforts (7 of the 16 films were remakes) and Moe and Larry's performances lacked energy. Both comedians were growing older, and could no longer perform pratfalls and physical comedy as they once had.

The final Stooge films had few bright moments: Hoofs and Goofs
Hoofs and Goofs
Hoofs and Goofs is the 175th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, A Merry Mix Up
A Merry Mix Up
A Merry Mix-Up is the 177th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, Rusty Romeos
Rusty Romeos
Rusty Romeos is the 181st short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 and Oil's Well That Ends Well
Oil's Well That Ends Well
Oil's Well That Ends Well is the 188th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 are amusing, while the musical Sweet and Hot
Sweet and Hot
Sweet and Hot is the 186th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 (long detested by fans) deserves some credit for straying from the norm. Muscle Up a Little Closer
Muscle Up a Little Closer
Muscle Up a Little Closer is the 176th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 most resembled the sitcoms of the era, while Pies and Guys
Pies and Guys
Pies and Guys is the 185th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 was a scene-for-scene remake of both Hoi Polloi
Hoi Polloi (1935 film)
Hoi Polloi is the tenth short film starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 and Half-Wits Holiday
Half-Wits Holiday
Half-Wits Holiday is the 97th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team The Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

. The space craze also took hold of the American public at the time, resulting in three entries focusing on space travel: Space Ship Sappy
Space Ship Sappy
Space Ship Sappy is the 178th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, Outer Space Jitters
Outer Space Jitters
Outer Space Jitters is the 182nd short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The five made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 and Flying Saucer Daffy
Flying Saucer Daffy
Flying Saucer Daffy is the 187th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team The Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

.

The inevitable occurred soon enough. Columbia was the last studio still producing shorts, and the market for such films had all but dried up. As a result, the studio opted not to renew the Stooges' contract when it expired in late December 1957. The final comedy produced was Flying Saucer Daffy, filmed on December 19–20, 1957. Several days later, the Stooges were unceremoniously fired from Columbia Pictures after 24 years of making low-budget shorts. Joan Howard Maurer
Joan Howard Maurer
Joan Howard Maurer is the daughter of Moe Howard of the Three Stooges. She has written several books on the Three Stooges and appeared in a few films.She was married to cartoonist/director Norman Maurer until his death in 1986....

, daughter of Moe, wrote the following in 1982:

Although the Stooges were no longer working for Columbia, the studio had enough completed films on the shelf to keep releasing new comedies for another 18 months, and not in the order they were produced. The final Stooge release, Sappy Bull Fighters
Sappy Bull Fighters
Sappy Bull Fighters is the 190th and final short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.- Plot :...

, did not reach theaters until June 4, 1959. With no active contract in place, Moe and Larry discussed plans for a personal appearance tour; meanwhile, Besser's wife had a minor heart attack, and he preferred to stay local, leading him to withdraw from the act. For the first time in nearly 30 years, the Stooges hit a dead end.

The comeback: Larry, Moe and Curly Joe


Seeing the success of how television, in its early years, allowed movie studios to unload a backlog of short films thought unmarketable, the Stooge films seemed perfect for the burgeoning genre. ABC
American Broadcasting Company
The American Broadcasting Company is an American commercial broadcasting television network. Created in 1943 from the former NBC Blue radio network, ABC is owned by The Walt Disney Company and is part of Disney-ABC Television Group. Its first broadcast on television was in 1948...

 television had even expressed interest as far back as 1949, purchasing exclusive rights to 30 of the trio's shorts. However, the success of television revivals for such names as Laurel and Hardy
Laurel and Hardy
Laurel and Hardy were one of the most popular and critically acclaimed comedy double acts of the early Classical Hollywood era of American cinema...

, Woody Woodpecker
Woody Woodpecker
Woody Woodpecker is an animated cartoon character, an anthropomorphic acorn woodpecker who appeared in theatrical short films produced by the Walter Lantz animation studio and distributed by Universal Pictures...

, Tom and Jerry
Tom and Jerry
Tom and Jerry are the cat and mouse cartoon characters that were evolved starting in 1939.Tom and Jerry also may refer to:Cartoon works featuring the cat and mouse so named:* The Tom and Jerry Show...

 and the Our Gang
Our Gang
Our Gang, also known as The Little Rascals or Hal Roach's Rascals, was a series of American comedy short films about a group of poor neighborhood children and the adventures they had together. Created by comedy producer Hal Roach, the series is noted for showing children behaving in a relatively...

 series in the late 1950s led Columbia to cash in again on the Stooges. In January 1958, Columbia's television subsidiary Screen Gems
Screen Gems
Screen Gems is an American movie production company and subsidiary company of Sony Pictures Entertainment's Columbia TriStar Motion Picture Group that has served several different purposes for its parent companies over the decades since its incorporation....

 offered a package consisting of 78 Stooge shorts (mainly from the Curly era), which were well received. Almost immediately, an additional 40 shorts hit the market, and by 1959, all 190 Stooge shorts were airing regularly. Due to the massive quantity of Stooge product available for broadcast, the films were broadcast Monday through Friday, leading to heavy exposure aimed squarely at children. This led parents to watch alongside of their offspring, and before long, Howard and Fine found themselves in high demand. Moe quickly signed movie and burlesque
American burlesque
American Burlesque is a genre of variety show. Derived from elements of Victorian burlesque, music hall and minstrel shows, burlesque shows in America became popular in the 1860s and evolved to feature ribald comedy and female striptease...

 comic Joe DeRita for the "third Stooge" role; DeRita adopted first a crew cut
Crew cut
A crew cut is a type of haircut in which the hair on the top of the head is cut relatively short, graduated in length from the longest hair at the front hairline to the shortest at the back of the crown. The hair on the sides and back of the head is usually tapered short, semi-short or medium. A...

 and then a completely shaven hairstyle and became "Curly Joe" because of his resemblance to the original Curly Howard (also to make it easier to distinguish him from Joe Besser, the earlier Stooge called Joe).
This Three Stooges lineup went on to make a series of popular full-length films from 1959 to 1965, most notably Have Rocket, Will Travel
Have Rocket, Will Travel
Have Rocket, Will Travel is a 1959 comedy film starring The Three Stooges. By this time, the trio consisted of Moe Howard, Larry Fine, and Joe DeRita . Released by Columbia Pictures, the feature was produced to capitalize on the comedy trio's late 1950s resurgence in popularity...

, The Three Stooges Meet Hercules
The Three Stooges Meet Hercules
The Three Stooges Meet Hercules was the third feature film to star the Three Stooges after their 1959 resurgence in popularity. By this time, the trio consisted of Moe Howard, Larry Fine, and Joe DeRita . Released by Columbia Pictures, The Three Stooges Meet Hercules was directed by long-time...

 and The Three Stooges Go Around the World in a Daze
The Three Stooges Go Around the World in a Daze
The Three Stooges Go Around the World in a Daze is the fifth feature film made by the Three Stooges after their 1959 resurgence in popularity. By this time, the trio consisted of Moe Howard, Larry Fine, and Joe DeRita...

. The films were aimed at the kiddie-matinee market, and most were Farce
Farce
In theatre, a farce is a comedy which aims at entertaining the audience by means of unlikely, extravagant, and improbable situations, disguise and mistaken identity, verbal humour of varying degrees of sophistication, which may include word play, and a fast-paced plot whose speed usually increases,...

 outings in the Stooge tradition, with the exception of Snow White and the Three Stooges
Snow White and the Three Stooges
Snow White and the Three Stooges is the second feature film to star the Three Stooges after their 1959 resurgence in popularity. By this time, the trio consisted of Moe Howard, Larry Fine, and Joe DeRita . Released by 20th Century Fox, this was the trio's take on the classic fairy tale Snow White...

, a children's fantasy in Technicolor
Technicolor
Technicolor is a color motion picture process invented in 1916 and improved over several decades.It was the second major process, after Britain's Kinemacolor, and the most widely used color process in Hollywood from 1922 to 1952...

. They also appeared as firemen (the role that helped make them famous in Soup to Nuts) in the film It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World
It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World
It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World is a 1963 American comedy film produced and directed by Stanley Kramer about the madcap pursuit of $350,000 in stolen cash by a diverse and colorful group of strangers...

. Throughout the 1960s, The Three Stooges were one of the most popular and highest-paid live acts in America.

The Stooges also tried their hand at another weekly television series in 1960 entitled The Three Stooges Scrapbook
The Three Stooges Scrapbook
The Three Stooges Scrapbook was an unaired 1960 television pilot starring The Three Stooges . The pilot featured the slapstick trio getting evicted from a rooming house for cooking in their apartment, looking for a new place to live, finding refuge in the home of a mad inventor , and presenting an...

. Filmed in color and with a laugh track
Laugh track
A laugh track is a separate soundtrack invented by Charles "Charley" Douglass, with the artificial sound of audience laughter, made to be inserted into television programming of comedy shows and sitcoms.The term "laugh track" does not apply to the genuine audience laughter on shows that shoot in...

, the first episode, entitled "Home Cooking," featured the boys rehearsing for a new television show. Like Jerks of All Trades, the pilot did not sell. However, Norman Maurer was able to reuse the footage (reprocessed in black and white) for the first 20 minutes of the feature film The Three Stooges in Orbit
The Three Stooges in Orbit
The Three Stooges In Orbit was the fourth feature film to star the Three Stooges after their 1959 resurgence in popularity. By this time, the trio consisted of Moe Howard, Larry Fine, and Joe DeRita . Released by Columbia Pictures, The Three Stooges In Orbit was directed by long-time Stooge...

.

The trio also filmed 41 short comedy skits for The New Three Stooges
The New Three Stooges
The New Three Stooges is a syndicated television program that ran from 1965-1966 starring the Three Stooges. The show follows the trio's antics both in live-action and animated segments. The cast consisted of Moe Howard, Larry Fine and Curly-Joe DeRita, with actor and close friend Emil Sitka...

, which features a series of 156 animated cartoons produced for television. The Stooges appeared in live-action color footage, which preceded and followed each animated adventure in which they voiced their respective characters.

Final years


In 1969, the Three Stooges filmed a pilot episode for a new TV series entitled Kook's Tour
Kook's Tour
Kook's Tour is the title of an American short comedy film produced in late 1969 and early 1970. It was the final film to star the Three Stooges and originally intended as part of a television series. However, on January 9, 1970, before filming was completed, Larry Fine suffered a severe stroke,...

, a combination travelogue-sitcom that had the "retired" Stooges traveling around the world, with the episodes filmed on location.

On January 9, 1970, during production of the pilot, Larry suffered a paralyzing stroke, ending his acting career, as well as plans for the television series.
Plans were in the works for longtime foil Emil Sitka to replace Larry as the "Middle Stooge" in 1971, but nothing ever came of that idea other than the proposed publicity still reproduced here. Three years later, just before Christmas of 1974, Larry Fine suffered yet another stroke at the age of 72 and four weeks later, suffered a more massive one. Slipping into a coma, he died a week later of a stroke-induced cerebral hemorrhage on January 24, 1975.

Devastated by his friend's death, Moe nevertheless decided that the Three Stooges should continue. Several movie ideas were considered, one of which according to critic and movie historian Leonard Maltin
Leonard Maltin
Leonard Maltin is an American film and animated film critic and historian, author of several mainstream books on cinema, focusing on nostalgic, celebratory narratives.-Personal life:...

, (who also uncovered a pre-production photo) was entitled Blazing Stewardesses
Blazing Stewardesses
Blazing Stewardesses is a 1975 sex comedy film that reunited the last remaining members of the Ritz Brothers comedy team. Originally, the film was to have starred the Three Stooges featuring Moe Howard, Emil Sitka , and Curly Joe DeRita, but Howard's illness led to the Ritz Brothers being brought...

. Unfortunately, before pre-production could begin, after a lifetime of smoking, Moe fell ill from lung cancer, and died three months later on May 4, 1975, finally putting to rest the last original surviving member of one of the most famous comedy troupes of the 20th Century.

However, Blazing Stewardesses, the last film idea that the Three Stooges had ever seriously considered, was eventually made, starring the last of the surviving Ritz Brothers
Ritz Brothers
The Ritz Brothers were an American comedy team who appeared in films, and as live performers from 1925 to the late 1960s.Although there were four brothers, the sons of Austrian-born haberdasher Max Joachim and his wife Pauline, only three of them performed together. There was also a sister,...

 comedy troupe and released to moderate acclaim later that year.

Joe DeRita continued to perform live into the mid-1970s with Mousie Garner
Paul Garner
Paul "Mousie" Garner earned his nickname by assuming the role of a shy, simpering jokester. Garner was one of the last actors still doing schtick from vaudeville, and has been referred to as "The Grand Old Man Of Vaudeville."-Career:Garner was one of over 20 comedians who worked as part of Ted...

 and Frank Mitchell
Frank Mitchell (actor)
Frank Mitchell was an American film actor. He appeared in over 70 films between 1920 and 1980.-Career:Frank Mitchell was a short, stocky, mischievous-looking comic and acrobat who got his start in entertainment by entering contests imitating Charles Chaplin...

 as "The New 3 Stooges" enjoying recognition well into old age, before retiring by 1979.

Of the remaining “original-replacement” Stooges, Joe Besser died of heart failure on March 1, 1988, followed by Joe DeRita of pneumonia on July 3, 1993.

Legacy and perspective


Some 50 years after their last short film was released, the Three Stooges remain wildly popular with audiences. Their films have never left the television airwaves since first appearing in 1958, and they continue to delight old fans while attracting a new legion of fervent admirers. A hard-working group of working-class comedians who were never the critic's darlings, the durable act endured several personnel changes in their careers that would have permanently sidelined a less persistent act. Despite watching two of his brothers die in a brief span of time, the Stooges would not have lasted as long as they did as a unit without Moe Howard's guiding hand.

The Ted Okuda
Ted Okuda
Ted Okuda is an American non-fiction author and film historian. He has many books and magazine features to his credit, under his own name and in collaboration with others.-Career:...

/Edward Watz-penned book The Columbia Comedy Shorts puts the Stooges legacy in critical perspective:
Beginning in the 1980s, the Stooges finally began to receive long-overdue critical recognition. More often than not, the praise was directed at Curly, usually at the expense of his castmates, most especially Shemp. With the advent of cable television and the burgeoning home video market, the praise was eventually spread more evenly throughout the team. Critics began to realize that Moe and Larry were gifted performers; though less flamboyant than Curly, they were by no means less talented. Curly was indeed brilliant and a one-of-a-kind, but taken for long periods of time, he could also be irritating and exhausting without Moe and Larry present to provide a counterbalance. This balance would be handled better after Shemp returned to the act, with Larry in particular receiving more screen time. The release of nearly all their films on DVD by 2010 has allowed critics of Joe Besser and Joe DeRita—often the recipients of significant fan backlash—to appreciate the unique style of comedy both comedians brought to the Stooges. In addition, the DVD market in particular has allowed fans to view the entire Stooge film corpus as distinct periods in their long, distinguished career instead of comparing one Stooge to the other (the Curly vs. Shemp debate continues to this day).

The team appeared in 220 films. In the end, it is the durability of the 190 timeless short films the Stooges made at Columbia Pictures that acts as an enduring tribute to the comedy team. Their continued popularity worldwide has proven to even the most skeptical critics that their films—quite simply—are funny. American television personality Steve Allen
Steve Allen
Steve Allen may refer to:*Steve Allen , American musician, comedian, and writer*Steve Allen , presenter on the London-based talk radio station LBC 97.3...

 went on record in the mid-1980s saying "though they never achieved widespread critical acclaim, they achieved exactly what they had always intended to do: they made people laugh."

Line-ups

Years Ted Moe Shemp Larry Curly Joe Curly Joe Emil Sitka
1922–1924
1925–1932
1932–1934
1934–1946
1946–1955
1956–1958
1958–1971
1971–1975


Ted Healy
Ted Healy
Ted Healy was an American vaudeville performer, comedian, and actor. He is chiefly remembered today as the original creator of the Three Stooges, but had a successful stage and film career of his own.- Early life :...



Real Name: Clarence Ernst Lee Nash

Born: 1 October 1896

Died:

Stooge Years: 1922–1934

Moe Howard
Moe Howard
Moses Harry Horwitz , known professionally as Moe Howard, was an American actor and comedian best known as the leader of The Three Stooges, the farce comedy team who starred in motion pictures and television for four decades...



Real Name: Moses Harry Horwitz

Born: 19 June 1897

Died:

Stooge years: 1922–1975

Larry Fine
Larry Fine
Louis Feinberg , known professionally as Larry Fine, was an American comedian and actor, who is best known as a member of the comedy act The Three Stooges.-Early life:...



Real Name: Louis Feinberg

Born: 5 October 1902

Died:

Stooge years: 1925–1971

Curly Howard
Curly Howard
Jerome Lester "Jerry" Horwitz , better known by his stage name Curly Howard, was an American comedian and vaudevillian. He is best known as a member of the American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges, along with his older brothers Moe Howard and Shemp Howard, and actor Larry Fine...



Real Name: Jerome Lester Horwitz

Born: 22 October 1903

Died:

Stooge years: 1932–1946

Shemp Howard

Real Name: Samuel Horwitz

Born: 4 March 1895

Died:

Stooge years: 1922–1932, 1946–1955

Joe Besser
Joe Besser
Joe Besser was an American comedian, known for his impish humor and wimpy characters, and is now best remembered for his brief stint as a member of the Three Stooges in movie short subjects of 1957-59...



Born: 12 August 1907

Died:

Stooge years: 1956–1958

Joe DeRita

Real Name: Joseph Wardell

Born: 12 July 1909

Died:

Stooge years: 1958–1975

Emil Sitka
Emil Sitka
Emil Sitka was a veteran American actor who appeared in hundreds of movies, short films, and television shows, and is best known for his numerous appearances with the Three Stooges—nearly 40...



Born: 22 December 1915

Died:

Stooge years: n/a

Shorts


The Three Stooges appeared in 220 films throughout their career. Of those 220, 190 short films were made for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959, for which the trio are best known. Their contract was extended each year from 1934 until the final one expired on December 31, 1957. The last 8 of the 16 shorts with Joe Besser were released soon afterward.

C3 Entertainment, Inc.


Throughout their career, Moe acted as both their main creative force and business manager. Comedy III was formed by Moe, Larry and Curly-Joe in 1959 to manage all business and merchandise transactions for the team. Comedy III was basically in the background, with Moe's son-in-law Norman Maurer
Norman Maurer
Norman Albert Maurer , a comic book artist and writer, was also a director and producer of films and television shows.-Comic books:...

 managing the comedy teams' film interests under Normandy Productions, and merchandising affairs under Norman Maurer Productions (NMP). Norman Maurer died in 1986.

In 1994 the heirs of Larry Fine and Joe DeRita filed a lawsuit against Moe's family, particularly Joan Howard Maurer
Joan Howard Maurer
Joan Howard Maurer is the daughter of Moe Howard of the Three Stooges. She has written several books on the Three Stooges and appeared in a few films.She was married to cartoonist/director Norman Maurer until his death in 1986....

 and her son Jeffrey, who had inherited the NMP/Normandy business. The result reestablished Comedy III as a three-way interest of Fine/[Moe]Howard/DeRita. The DeRita heirs received the proxy to the Howard share, giving them majority control on the company's management. Curly-Joe's stepsons, Robert and Earl Benjamin, became the senior management of Comedy III. The Benjamins later incorporated the company, and C3 Entertainment, Inc. is currently the owner of all Three Stooges trademarks and merchandising. Larry's grandson Eric Lamond is the representative of the Fines' one-third interest in the company.

C3 has also, since 1995, authorized and provided the services of veteran actors Jim Skousen, Alan Semok, and Dave Knight (as Moe, Larry, and Curly respectively) for numerous "personal appearances" by the Stooge characters for a variety of merchandising and promotional events. This latter day trio has also provided voices for the characters in a variety of radio spots, merchandising tie-ins, and most recently for the first new Three Stooges short in fifty years. A CGI animation by Famous Frames Mobile Interactive, a first-wave "new media" company, entitled The Grate Debate, has Moe, Larry and Curly running for President.

Television broadcasts and rights issues


A handful of Three Stooges shorts first aired on television in 1949, on the American Broadcasting Company
American Broadcasting Company
The American Broadcasting Company is an American commercial broadcasting television network. Created in 1943 from the former NBC Blue radio network, ABC is owned by The Walt Disney Company and is part of Disney-ABC Television Group. Its first broadcast on television was in 1948...

 (ABC) network. It was not until 1958 that Screen Gems packaged 78 shorts for national syndication; the package was gradually enlarged to encompass the entire library of 190 shorts. In 1959, KTTV
KTTV
KTTV, channel 11, is an owned-and-operated television station of the News Corporation-owned Fox Broadcasting Company, located in Los Angeles, California. Serving the vast Los Angeles metropolitan area, KTTV is a sister station to KCOP , Los Angeles' MyNetworkTV station...

 in Los Angeles purchased the Three Stooges films for air, but by the early 1970s, rival station KTLA
KTLA
KTLA, virtual channel 5, is a television station in Los Angeles, California, USA. Owned by the Tribune Company, KTLA is an affiliate of the CW Television Network. KTLA's studios are on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood, and its transmitter is located atop Mount Wilson...

 began airing the Stooges films, keeping them in the schedule until early 1994. The Family Channel (now ABC Family
ABC Family
ABC Family, stylized as abc family, is an American television network, owned by ABC Family Worldwide Inc., a subsidiary of the Disney-ABC Television Group division of The Walt Disney Company...

) ran the shorts as part of their Stooge TV block from February 19, 1996 to January 2, 1998. In the late 1990s, AMC
AMC (TV network)
AMC is a cable television specialty channel that primarily airs movies, along with a limited amount of original programming. The letters originally stood for American Movie Classics; however since 2002, the full name has been deemphasized as a result of a major shift in programming...

 had held the rights to the Three Stooges shorts, originally airing them under the Stooges Playhouse block, but replacing it in 1999 with N.Y.U.K. (New Yuk University of Knuckleheads). Featuring host Leslie Nielsen
Leslie Nielsen
Leslie William Nielsen, OC was a Canadian and naturalized American actor and comedian. Nielsen appeared in more than one hundred films and 1,500 television programs over the span of his career, portraying more than 220 characters...

 in the form of a college instructor, the block aired several shorts often grouped by a theme, such as similar schtick used in different films. Although the block was discontinued after AMC revamped their format in 2002, the network still ran Stooges shorts occasionally. The AMC run ended when Spike TV picked them up in 2004, airing them in their Stooges Slap-Happy Hour. By 2007, the network had discontinued the block. Although Spike did air Stooges shorts for a brief period of time after the block was canceled, as of late April 2008, Three Stooges has disappeared from the network's schedule entirely. The Three Stooges returned on December 31, 2009 on AMC, starting with the "Countdown with the Stooges" New Year's Eve
New Year's Eve
New Year's Eve is observed annually on December 31, the final day of any given year in the Gregorian calendar. In modern societies, New Year's Eve is often celebrated at social gatherings, during which participants dance, eat, consume alcoholic beverages, and watch or light fireworks to mark the...

 marathon. AMC planned to put several episodes on their website in 2010.

Since the 1990s Columbia and its television division's successor, Sony Pictures Television
Sony Pictures Television
Sony Pictures Television, Inc. is an American and global television production/distribution subsidiary of Sony Pictures Entertainment. In turn, the latter is part of the Japanese conglomerate Sony.-Background:...

, has preferred to license the Stooges shorts to cable networks, precluding the films from being shown on local broadcast TV. Two stations in Chicago and Boston
Boston
Boston is the capital of and largest city in Massachusetts, and is one of the oldest cities in the United States. The largest city in New England, Boston is regarded as the unofficial "Capital of New England" for its economic and cultural impact on the entire New England region. The city proper had...

, however, signed long-term syndication contracts with Columbia years ago and have declined to terminate them. Thus, WMEU-CA
WMEU-CA
WMEU-CA is a class A station in Chicago, Illinois. It is owned by Weigel Broadcasting, which also owns sister stations WCIU-TV and WWME-CA. The station is an extension of WWME's classic programming format, and brands as "MeToo"...

 in Chicago currently airs all 190 Three Stooges shorts on Stooge-a-Palooza, hosted by Rich Koz
Rich Koz
Rich Koz is a Chicago area actor and broadcaster best known as horror-movie host Svengoolie. Out of costume, he is also the knowledgeable host of the syndicated Three Stooges Stooge-a-Palooza program.- Beginnings :...

, and WSBK-TV
WSBK-TV
WSBK-TV is a MyNetworkTV television station for eastern Massachusetts and southern New Hampshire that is licensed to Boston. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on UHF channel 39 from a transmitter along the Needham and Wellesley town line southwest of the MA 9 and I-95 / MA 128...

 in Boston airs Stooge shorts and feature films. KTLA
KTLA
KTLA, virtual channel 5, is a television station in Los Angeles, California, USA. Owned by the Tribune Company, KTLA is an affiliate of the CW Television Network. KTLA's studios are on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood, and its transmitter is located atop Mount Wilson...

 in Los Angeles dropped the shorts in 1994, but brought them back in 2007 as part of a special retro-marathon commemorating the station's 60th anniversary. Since that time, the station's original 16mm Stooges film prints have aired occasionally as part of mini-marathons on holidays. Antenna TV
Antenna TV
Antenna TV is an American digital broadcast television network, primarily featuring classic television series from the 1950s to the 1990s, along with some feature films. It is owned by Tribune Broadcasting, a division of the Chicago-based Tribune Company...

, a network broadcasting on the digital subchannels of local broadcast stations (owned by Tribune Broadcasting
Tribune Broadcasting
The Tribune Broadcasting Company is a group of radio and television stations located throughout the United States which are owned and operated by the Tribune Company, a media conglomerate based in Chicago, Illinois and named for the flagship Chicago Tribune newspaper.- History :Tribune Broadcasting...

, who also owns KTLA), began airing the Stooges shorts upon the network's January 1, 2011 launch, which run in multi-hour blocks on weekends; most of the Three Stooges feature films are also broadcast on the network, through Antenna TV's distribution agreement with Sony Pictures Entertainment
Sony Pictures Entertainment
Sony Pictures Entertainment, Inc. is the television and film production/distribution unit of Japanese multinational technology and media conglomerate Sony...

 (whose Columbia Pictures subsidiary released most of the films).

Some of the Stooge films have been colorized
Film colorization
Film colorization is any process that adds color to black-and-white, sepia or monochrome moving-picture images. It may be done as a special effect, or to modernize black-and-white films, or to restore color films...

 by two separate companies. The first colorized DVD releases, distributed by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment is the home video distribution arm of Sony Pictures Entertainment, a subsidiary of Sony Corporation. It was established in November 1979 as Columbia Pictures Home Entertainment, releasing 20 titles: The Anderson Tapes, Bell, Book and Candle, Born Free, Breakout,...

, were prepared by West Wing Studios
Film colorization
Film colorization is any process that adds color to black-and-white, sepia or monochrome moving-picture images. It may be done as a special effect, or to modernize black-and-white films, or to restore color films...

 in 2004. The following year, Legend Films
Legend Films
Legend Films, a San Diego-based company, was founded in August 2001. The company specializes in the conversion of feature films, both new release and catalog titles, and commercials from their native 2D format into 3-D film format utilizing proprietary technology and software...

 colorized the public domain shorts Malice in the Palace
Malice in the Palace
Malice in the Palace is the 117th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

, Sing a Song of Six Pants
Sing a Song of Six Pants
Sing a Song of Six Pants is the 102nd short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.- Plot :...

, Disorder in the Court
Disorder in the Court
Disorder in the Court is the 15th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

 and Brideless Groom
Brideless Groom
Brideless Groom is the 101st short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

. Disorder in the Court and Brideless Groom also appear on two of West Wing's colorized releases. In any event, the Columbia-produced shorts (aside from the public domain films) are handled by Sony Pictures Entertainment
Sony Pictures Entertainment
Sony Pictures Entertainment, Inc. is the television and film production/distribution unit of Japanese multinational technology and media conglomerate Sony...

, while the MGM Stooges shorts are owned by Warner Bros.
Warner Bros.
Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc., also known as Warner Bros. Pictures or simply Warner Bros. , is an American producer of film and television entertainment.One of the major film studios, it is a subsidiary of Time Warner, with its headquarters in Burbank,...

 via their Turner Entertainment
Turner Entertainment
Turner Entertainment Company, Inc. is an American media company founded by Ted Turner. Now owned by Time Warner, the company is largely responsible for overseeing its library for worldwide distribution Turner Entertainment Company, Inc. (commonly known as Turner Entertainment Co.) is an American...

 division. Sony offers 21 of the shorts on their web platform Crackle
Crackle
Crackle is a digital network and studio, featuring commercially supported streaming video content in Flash Video format. It is owned by Sony Pictures Entertainment, and its content consists primarily of Sony's library of films and television shows...

, along with eleven Minisodes
The Minisode Network
The Minisode Network is a Sony Pictures Television internet television network launched in June 2007. The term minisode is a portmanteau of "mini" and "episode." Unlike webisodes, which are initially broadcast on the internet, minisodes are condensed versions of previously broadcast, full length,...

. Meanwhile, the rights to the Stooges' feature films rests with the studios that originally produced them (Columbia/Sony for the Columbia films, and 20th Century Fox
20th Century Fox
Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation — also known as 20th Century Fox, or simply 20th or Fox — is one of the six major American film studios...

 for the Fox films).

Home video release and public reception



Between 1984 and 1985, RCA Columbia Pictures Home Video released a total of thirteen Three Stooges volumes on VHS
VHS
The Video Home System is a consumer-level analog recording videocassette standard developed by Victor Company of Japan ....

, Beta
Beta
Beta is the second letter of the Greek alphabet. Beta or BETA may also refer to:-Biology:*Beta , a genus of flowering plants, mostly referred to as beets*Beta, a rank in a community of social animals...

 and Laserdisc
Laserdisc
LaserDisc was a home video format and the first commercial optical disc storage medium. Initially licensed, sold, and marketed as MCA DiscoVision in North America in 1978, the technology was previously referred to interally as Optical Videodisc System, Reflective Optical Videodisc, Laser Optical...

, each containing three shorts. These titles were later reissued on VHS by its successor, Sony Pictures Entertainment
Sony Pictures Entertainment
Sony Pictures Entertainment, Inc. is the television and film production/distribution unit of Japanese multinational technology and media conglomerate Sony...

, between 1995 and 1997, with a DVD
DVD
A DVD is an optical disc storage media format, invented and developed by Philips, Sony, Toshiba, and Panasonic in 1995. DVDs offer higher storage capacity than Compact Discs while having the same dimensions....

 reissue between 2000 and 2004.

The Three Stooges Collection


On October 30, 2007, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment is the home video distribution arm of Sony Pictures Entertainment, a subsidiary of Sony Corporation. It was established in November 1979 as Columbia Pictures Home Entertainment, releasing 20 titles: The Anderson Tapes, Bell, Book and Candle, Born Free, Breakout,...

 released a two-disc DVD set entitled The Three Stooges Collection
The Three Stooges Collection
The Three Stooges Collection is a series of DVD collections of theatrical short subjects produced by Columbia Pictures starring American slapstick comedy team The Three Stooges. Each volume is a two disc set, and covers a three-year interval, with the exception of Volume Eight, which is a three...

, Volume One: 1934–1936. The set contains shorts from the first three years the Stooges worked at Columbia Pictures
Columbia Pictures
Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. is an American film production and distribution company. Columbia Pictures now forms part of the Columbia TriStar Motion Picture Group, owned by Sony Pictures Entertainment, a subsidiary of the Japanese conglomerate Sony. It is one of the leading film companies...

, marking the first time ever that all 19 shorts were released in their original theatrical order to DVD. Additionally, every short was remastered in high definition, a first for the Stooge films. Previous DVD releases were based on themes (wartime, history, work, etc.), and sold poorly. Fans and critics alike praised Sony for finally giving the Stooges the proper DVD treatment. One critic states "the Three Stooges on DVD has been a real mix'n match hodgepodge of un-restored titles and illogical entries. This new...boxset...seems to be the first concerted effort to categorize their huge body of work chronologically with many shorts seeing the digital light for the first time." Videolibrarian.com critic added "finally, the studio knuckleheads got it right! The way that the Three Stooges have been presented on home video has been a real slap in the face and poke in the eye to fans. They’ve been anthologized, colorized, and public domain-ed, as their shorts have been released and re-released in varying degrees of quality. Highly recommended." Critic James Plath of DVDtown.com added, "Thank you, Sony, for finally giving these Columbia Pictures icons the kind of DVD retrospective that they deserve. Remastered in High Definition and presented in chronological order, these short films now give fans the chance to appreciate the development of one of the most successful comedy teams in history."

The chronological series proved very successful and wildly popular, and Sony wasted little time preparing the next set for release. Volume Two: 1937–1939 was released on May 27, 2008, followed by Volume Three: 1940–1942 three months later on August 26, 2008. Demand exceeded supply, proving to Sony that they had a hit on their hands. In response, Volume Four: 1943–1945 was released on October 7, 2008, a mere two months after its predecessor. The global economic crisis slowed down the release schedule after Volume Four, and Volume Five: 1946–1948 was belatedly released on March 17, 2009. Volume Five is the first in the series to feature Shemp Howard with the Stooges. Volume Six: 1949–1951 was released June 16, 2009, and Volume Seven: 1952–1954 was released on November 10, 2009.

The eighth and final volume was released on June 1, 2010, bringing the series to a close. For the first time in history, all 190 Three Stooges short subjects became available to the public, uncut and unedited.

Music

  • Several instrumental tunes were played over the opening credits at different times in the production of the short features. The most commonly used themes were:
    • The verse portion of the Civil War era song "Listen to the Mockingbird", played in a comical way, complete with sounds of birds and such. This was first used in Pardon My Scotch
      Pardon My Scotch
      Pardon My Scotch is the ninth short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

      , their ninth short film, in 1935. (Prior to that comedic short, the opening theme varied and was typically connected to the storyline in some fashion.)
    • "Three Blind Mice
      Three Blind Mice
      Three Blind Mice is an English nursery rhyme and musical round. It has a Roud Folk Song Index number of 3753.-Lyrics:The modern words are:-Variations and uses:Amateur music composer Thomas Oliphant noted in 1843 that:...

      ", beginning in 1939 as a slow but straightforward presentation (dubbed the "sliding strings" version), often breaking into a "jazzy" style before ending. In mid-1942, another more driving version, complete with accordion
      Accordion
      The accordion is a box-shaped musical instrument of the bellows-driven free-reed aerophone family, sometimes referred to as a squeezebox. A person who plays the accordion is called an accordionist....

       was played fast all the way through.
  • The Columbia short subject Woman Haters
    Woman Haters
    Woman Haters is the first short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

     was done completely in rhyme, mostly recited (not sung), in rhythm with a Jazz-Age underscore running throughout the film, but with some key lines sung. It was sixth in a Musical Novelties short subject series, and appropriated its musical score from the first five films. The memorable “My Life, My Love, My All,” was originally “At Last!” from the film Um-Pa.
  • "Swinging the Alphabet
    Swinging the Alphabet
    "Swinging the Alphabet" is a novelty song sung by The Three Stooges in their 1938 film, Violent Is the Word for Curly. It is the only full-length song performed by the Stooges in their short films, and the only time they mimed to their own pre-recorded soundtrack.In 2005, film historian Richard...

    " (a.k.a. B-A-bay, B-E-be, B-I-bicky-bi…) from Violent Is the Word for Curly
    Violent Is the Word for Curly
    Violent Is the Word for Curly is the 32nd short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

     is perhaps the best-known song performed by the Stooges on film.
  • The “Lucia Sextet” (Chi mi frena in tal memento?), from the opera Lucia di Lammermoor
    Lucia di Lammermoor
    Lucia di Lammermoor is a dramma tragico in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti. Salvadore Cammarano wrote the Italian language libretto loosely based upon Sir Walter Scott's historical novel The Bride of Lammermoor....

     by Gaetano Donizetti
    Gaetano Donizetti
    Domenico Gaetano Maria Donizetti was an Italian composer from Bergamo, Lombardy. His best-known works are the operas L'elisir d'amore , Lucia di Lammermoor , and Don Pasquale , all in Italian, and the French operas La favorite and La fille du régiment...

     (announced by Larry as “the Sextet from Lucy”), is played on a record player and lip-synched by the Stooges in Micro-Phonies
    Micro-Phonies
    Micro-Phonies is the 87th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

    . The same melody re-appears in Squareheads of the Round Table
    Squareheads of the Round Table
    Squareheads of the Round Table is the 106th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

     as the tune of “Oh, Elaine, can you come out tonight?”. Micro-Phonies also includes the Johann Strauss II
    Johann Strauss II
    Johann Strauss II , also known as Johann Baptist Strauss or Johann Strauss, Jr., the Younger, or the Son , was an Austrian composer of light music, particularly dance music and operettas. He composed over 500 waltzes, polkas, quadrilles, and other types of dance music, as well as several operettas...

     waltz “Voices of Spring” ("Frühlingsstimmen
    Frühlingsstimmen
    "Frühlingsstimmen" , Op. 410, is a waltz by Johann Strauss II, written in 1882, for orchestra and solo soprano voice.-History:Strauss dedicated the work to the pianist and composer Alfred Grünfeld...

    ") Op. 410. Another Strauss waltz, "The Blue Danube
    The Blue Danube
    The Blue Danube is the common English title of An der schönen blauen Donau, Op. 314 , a waltz by the Austrian composer Johann Strauss II, composed in 1866...

    ", is featured in Ants in the Pantry
    Ants in the Pantry
    Ants in the Pantry is the 12th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

     and Punch Drunks
    Punch Drunks
    Punch Drunks is the second short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

    .
  • The song “Fredric March
    Fredric March
    Fredric March was an American stage and film actor. He won the Academy Award for Best Actor in 1932 for Dr. Jekyll and Mr...

    ” (named after the actor) was a favorite of director Jules White
    Jules White
    Jules White born Julius Weiss was a film director and producer best known for his short-subject comedies starring the Three Stooges.-Early years:...

    ; it appeared in at least seven different Columbia shorts:
    • Termites of 1938
      Termites of 1938
      Termites of 1938 is the 28th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

       - the Stooges "play" this song on a violin, flute, and string bass at a dinner party in an attempt to attract mice.
    • Dutiful But Dumb
      Dutiful But Dumb
      Dutiful but Dumb is the 54th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

       - Curly is hidden inside a floor-standing radio, and plays the song on a modified harmonica.
    • Three Little Twirps
      Three Little Twirps
      Three Little Twirps is the 71st short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

       - heard as background music at the circus while Moe and Curly sell tickets.
    • Idle Roomers
      Idle Roomers (1944 film)
      Idle Roomers is the 80th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Synopsis:...

       - Curly plays the song on a trombone
      Trombone
      The trombone is a musical instrument in the brass family. Like all brass instruments, sound is produced when the player’s vibrating lips cause the air column inside the instrument to vibrate...

       to calm a wolf man.
    • Gents Without Cents
      Gents Without Cents
      Gents Without Cents is the 81st short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

       - three girls perform acrobatics on stage while this song is playing
    • Gents in a Jam
      Gents in a Jam
      Gents in a Jam is the 141st short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

       - Shemp and Moe have a problem with a radio that will not stop playing this song
    • Pardon My Backfire
      Pardon My Backfire
      Pardon My Backfire is the 149th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.-Plot:...

       - the song plays on a car radio
  • The Moe–Larry–Curly Joe lineup of the Stooges recorded several musical record albums in the early 1960s. Most of their songs were adaptations of nursery rhyme
    Nursery rhyme
    The term nursery rhyme is used for "traditional" poems for young children in Britain and many other countries, but usage only dates from the 19th century and in North America the older ‘Mother Goose Rhymes’ is still often used.-Lullabies:...

    s. Among their more popular recordings were "Making a Record" (a surreal trip to a recording studio built around the song "Go Tell Aunt Mary"), "Three Little Fishes", "All I Want for Christmas Is My Two Front Teeth
    All I Want for Christmas Is My Two Front Teeth
    "All I Want for Christmas Is My Two Front Teeth" is a novelty Christmas song written in 1944 by Donald Yetter Gardner while teaching music at public schools in Smithtown, New York...

    ", "Wreck the Halls with Boughs of Holly", "Mairzy Doats
    Mairzy Doats
    Mairzy Doats is a novelty song composed in 1943 by Milton Drake, Al Hoffman and Jerry Livingston. It was first played on radio station WOR, New York, by Al Trace and his Silly Symphonists. The song made the pop charts several times, with a version by the Merry Macs reaching No. 1 in March 1944...

    " and "I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas
    I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas
    I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas is a Christmas novelty song written by John Rox and performed by Gayla Peevey in 1953. The song peaked at number 24 on Billboard magazine's pop chart in December 1953.-History:...

    ".
  • In 1983, a group called the Jump 'N the Saddle Band
    Jump 'N the Saddle Band
    Jump 'N the Saddle Band was a country pop group from Chicago, Illinois. They scored a regional hit with the novelty song "The Curly Shuffle" in 1983, a tribute to The Three Stooges. As the tune picked up steam on radio, the group signed to Atlantic Records and released a self-titled album,...

     recorded a track called "The Curly Shuffle
    The Curly Shuffle
    "The Curly Shuffle" is a novelty song by the group Jump 'N the Saddle Band first released in late 1983, an homage to The Three Stooges film comedy team. Jump 'N the Saddle Band had one of the biggest novelty hits of the early 1980s with the song...

    ", which featured the narrator singing about his love of the Stooges mixed with a chorus of many of Curly's catchphrases and sound effects. In the mid-1980s, the song became a popular mid-game hit for New York Mets
    New York Mets
    The New York Mets are a professional baseball team based in the borough of Queens in New York City, New York. They belong to Major League Baseball's National League East Division. One of baseball's first expansion teams, the Mets were founded in 1962 to replace New York's departed National League...

     fans in the Shea Stadium
    Shea Stadium
    William A. Shea Municipal Stadium, usually shortened to Shea Stadium or just Shea , was a stadium in the New York City borough of Queens, in Flushing Meadows–Corona Park. It was the home baseball park of Major League Baseball's New York Mets from 1964 to 2008...

     bleachers, who would dance in small groups to the tune whenever the song was played between innings. The music video
    Music video
    A music video or song video is a short film integrating a song and imagery, produced for promotional or artistic purposes. Modern music videos are primarily made and used as a marketing device intended to promote the sale of music recordings...

    , which featured clips of the classic Stooges shorts, was also included as a bonus feature on one of the 1984 VHS releases.

Feature motion pictures



The Three Stooges also made appearances in many feature length movies in the course of their careers:
Film Year Moe Larry Curly Shemp Joe Curly Joe
Soup to Nuts
Soup to Nuts
Soup to Nuts is an American feature film written by Rube Goldberg and directed by Benjamin Stoloff, which marks the film debut of the comic trio who would go on to become known as the Three Stooges...

 
1930
Turn Back the Clock
Turn Back the Clock (film)
Turn Back the Clock is an MGM comedy drama film directed by Edgar Selwyn, written by Edgar Selwyn and Ben Hecht, and starring by Lee Tracy and Mae Clarke...

 
1933
Meet the Baron
Meet the Baron
Meet the Baron is a comedy film starring Jack Pearl, Jimmy Durante, Edna May Oliver, Zasu Pitts, Ted Healy and the Three Stooges.-Plot:...

 
1933
Dancing Lady
Dancing Lady
Dancing Lady is a 1933 musical film starring Joan Crawford and Clark Gable, and featuring Franchot Tone, the fourth of eight collaborations between Crawford and Gable. It was directed by Robert Z. Leonard, produced by John W. Considine Jr. and David O. Selznick, and was based on the novel of the...

 
1933
Broadway to Hollywood
Broadway to Hollywood (1933 film)
Broadway to Hollywood is a film directed by Willard Mack, produced by Harry Rapf, and released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. The film features many of MGM's stars of the time, including Frank Morgan, Alice Brady, Madge Evans, Jimmy Durante, Mickey Rooney, and Jackie Cooper...

 
1933
Myrt and Marge  1933
Fugitive Lovers
Fugitive Lovers
Fugitive Lovers is a MGM feature film starring Madge Evans and Robert Montgomery. Also starring:Nat Pendleton, C. Henry Gordon, Ruth Selwyn and Ted Healy and His Stooges,who made appearance as stage performers travelling on the bus. Writers: Frances Goodrich Albert Hackett...

 
1934
Hollywood Party
Hollywood Party (1934 film)
Hollywood Party is a musical film starring Jimmy Durante. It was distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. The film had no director credited, although it has been asserted that Richard Boleslawski, Allan Dwan, Edmund Goulding, Russell Mack, Charles Reisner, Roy Rowland, George Stevens and Sam Wood...

 (cameos)
1934
The Captain Hates the Sea
The Captain Hates the Sea
The Captain Hates the Sea is a 1934 comedy film directed by Lewis Milestone and released by Columbia Pictures. The film, which involves a Grand Hotel-style series of intertwining stories involving the passengers on a cruise ship, is notable as the last film starring one-time silent film icon John...

 (cameos)
1934
Start Cheering
Start Cheering
Start Cheering is a musical motion picture starring Jimmy Durante, Walter Connolly and Joan Perry. It is best remember today for a cameo appearance by The Three Stooges as Campus Firemen, who were Columbia Pictures' short subject headliners at the time...

 
1938
Time Out for Rhythm
Time Out for Rhythm
Time Out for Rhythm is a 1941 musical comedy film starring Rudy Vallée, Ann Miller and The Three Stooges. Alan Hale, Jr., best known for his role as Skipper Jonas Grumby on Gilligan's Island, also makes a brief appearance early on, marking one of his first film appearances.To date, there has been...

 
1941
My Sister Eileen
My Sister Eileen
My Sister Eileen originated as a series of short stories by Ruth McKenney that eventually evolved into a book, a play, a musical, a radio play , two films, and a CBS television series in the 1960-1961 season....

 (cameos)
1942
Rockin' in the Rockies
Rockin' in the Rockies
Rockin' in the Rockies is a musical western film starring the Three Stooges . It was one of the Stooges' few feature films made during the run of their more well-known series of short subjects for Columbia Pictures, although the group had appeared in supporting roles in other features...

 
1945
Swing Parade of 1946
Swing Parade of 1946
Swing Parade of 1946 is musical comedy film. In it the Three Stooges help an aspiring singer, Carol Lawrence , and a nightclub owner, Danny Warren , find love...

 
1946
Gold Raiders
Gold Raiders
Gold Raiders is a comedy Western film, directed by Edward Bernds with a script by B-movie writer William Lively and veteran comedy writer Elwood Ullman. The film was an attempt by independent producer Bernard Glasser to inaugurate a new western series starring George O'Brien, the lead in F. W....

 
1951
Have Rocket, Will Travel
Have Rocket, Will Travel
Have Rocket, Will Travel is a 1959 comedy film starring The Three Stooges. By this time, the trio consisted of Moe Howard, Larry Fine, and Joe DeRita . Released by Columbia Pictures, the feature was produced to capitalize on the comedy trio's late 1950s resurgence in popularity...

 
1959
Stop! Look! and Laugh! (compilation) 1960
Snow White and the Three Stooges
Snow White and the Three Stooges
Snow White and the Three Stooges is the second feature film to star the Three Stooges after their 1959 resurgence in popularity. By this time, the trio consisted of Moe Howard, Larry Fine, and Joe DeRita . Released by 20th Century Fox, this was the trio's take on the classic fairy tale Snow White...

 
1961
The Three Stooges Meet Hercules
The Three Stooges Meet Hercules
The Three Stooges Meet Hercules was the third feature film to star the Three Stooges after their 1959 resurgence in popularity. By this time, the trio consisted of Moe Howard, Larry Fine, and Joe DeRita . Released by Columbia Pictures, The Three Stooges Meet Hercules was directed by long-time...

 
1962
The Three Stooges in Orbit
The Three Stooges in Orbit
The Three Stooges In Orbit was the fourth feature film to star the Three Stooges after their 1959 resurgence in popularity. By this time, the trio consisted of Moe Howard, Larry Fine, and Joe DeRita . Released by Columbia Pictures, The Three Stooges In Orbit was directed by long-time Stooge...

 
1962
The Three Stooges Go Around the World in a Daze
The Three Stooges Go Around the World in a Daze
The Three Stooges Go Around the World in a Daze is the fifth feature film made by the Three Stooges after their 1959 resurgence in popularity. By this time, the trio consisted of Moe Howard, Larry Fine, and Joe DeRita...

 
1963
It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World
It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World
It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World is a 1963 American comedy film produced and directed by Stanley Kramer about the madcap pursuit of $350,000 in stolen cash by a diverse and colorful group of strangers...

 (cameos)
1963
4 for Texas
4 for Texas
4 for Texas is a 1963 American western comedy starring Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Anita Ekberg, Ursula Andress, and featuring screen thugs Charles Bronson and Mike Mazurki, with a cameo appearance by the Three Stooges...

 (cameo)
1963
The Outlaws Is Coming
The Outlaws Is Coming
The Outlaws IS Coming! is the sixth and last theatrical feature film to star the Three Stooges after their 1959 resurgence in popularity. By this time, the trio consisted of Moe Howard, Larry Fine, and Joe DeRita . Like its predecessor, The Three Stooges Go Around the World in a Daze...

 
1965
Kook's Tour
Kook's Tour
Kook's Tour is the title of an American short comedy film produced in late 1969 and early 1970. It was the final film to star the Three Stooges and originally intended as part of a television series. However, on January 9, 1970, before filming was completed, Larry Fine suffered a severe stroke,...

 (TV pilot)
1970

Joe Besser never appeared with the Stooges in a feature film.

Three feature-length Columbia releases were actually packages of older Columbia shorts. Columbia Laff Hour (introduced in 1956) was a random assortment that included the Stooges among other Columbia comedians like Andy Clyde
Andy Clyde
Andy Clyde was a Scottish movie and TV actor whose career spanned more than four decades. He broke into silent films in 1925 as a Mack Sennett comic...

, Hugh Herbert
Hugh Herbert
Hugh Herbert was a motion picture comedian. He began his career in vaudeville, and wrote more than 150 plays and sketches.-Career:...

, and Vera Vague; the content and length varied from one theater to the next. Three Stooges Fun-o-Rama (introduced in 1959) was an all-Stooges show capitalizing on their TV fame, again with shorts chosen at random for individual theaters. The Three Stooges Follies (1974) was similar to Laff Hour, with a trio of Stooge comedies augmented by Buster Keaton
Buster Keaton
Joseph Frank "Buster" Keaton was an American comic actor, filmmaker, producer and writer. He was best known for his silent films, in which his trademark was physical comedy with a consistently stoic, deadpan expression, earning him the nickname "The Great Stone Face".Keaton was recognized as the...

 and Vera Vague shorts, a Batman
Batman
Batman is a fictional character created by the artist Bob Kane and writer Bill Finger. A comic book superhero, Batman first appeared in Detective Comics #27 , and since then has appeared primarily in publications by DC Comics...

 serial chapter, and a Kate Smith
Kate Smith
Kathryn Elizabeth "Kate" Smith was an American Popular singer, best known for her rendition of Irving Berlin's "God Bless America". Smith had a radio, television, and recording career spanning five decades, which reached its pinnacle in the 1940s.Smith was born in Greenville, Virginia...

 musical.

Museum


Gary Lassin opened the Stoogeum in 2004, in a renovated architect's office in Spring House, Pennsylvania
Spring House, Pennsylvania
Spring House is a census-designated place in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, United States. The population was 3,804 at the 2010 census.-Geography:Spring House is located at ....

, 25 miles (40.2 km) north of Philadelphia. The museum-quality exhibits
Collection (museum)
A museum is distinguished by a collection of often unique objects that forms the core of its activities for exhibitions, education, research, etc. This differentiates it from an archive or library, where the contents may be more paper-based, replaceable and less exhibition oriented...

 fill three stories 10000 square foot, including an 85-seat theater
Theatre
Theatre is a collaborative form of fine art that uses live performers to present the experience of a real or imagined event before a live audience in a specific place. The performers may communicate this experience to the audience through combinations of gesture, speech, song, music or dance...

. Peter Seely, editor
Literary editor
A literary editor is an editor in a newspaper, magazine or similar publication who deals with aspects concerning literature and books, especially reviews. A literary editor may also help with editing books themselves, by providing services such as proof reading, copy-editing, and literary...

 of the book Stoogeology: Essays on the Three Stooges said that the Stoogeum has "more stuff than I even imagined existed." 2,500 people visit it yearly, many during the annual Three Stooges Fan Club gathering in April.

Comic books


Over the years, several Three Stooges comics were produced.
  • St. John Publications
    St. John Publications
    St. John Publications was an American publisher of magazines and comic books. During its short existence , St. John's comic books established several industry firsts. Founded by Archer St. John , the firm was located in Manhattan at 545 Fifth Avenue. After the St...

     published the first Three Stooges comics in 1949 with 2 issues, then again in 1953–54 with 7 issues.
  • Dell Comics
    Dell Comics
    Dell Comics was the comic book publishing arm of Dell Publishing, which got its start in pulp magazines. It published comics from 1929 to 1973. At its peak, it was the most prominent and successful American company in the medium...

     published a Three Stooges series first as one-shots in their Four Color Comics
    Four Color
    Four Color, also known as Four Color Comics and One Shots, was a long-running American comic book anthology series published by Dell Comics between 1939 and 1962...

     line for five issues, then gave them a numbered series for four more issues (#6–9). With #10, the title would be published by Gold Key Comics
    Gold Key Comics
    Gold Key Comics was an imprint of Western Publishing created for comic books distributed to newsstands. Also known as Whitman Comics, Gold Key operated from 1962 to 1984.-History:...

    . Under Gold Key, the series lasted through issue #55 in 1972.
  • Gold Key Comics
    Gold Key Comics
    Gold Key Comics was an imprint of Western Publishing created for comic books distributed to newsstands. Also known as Whitman Comics, Gold Key operated from 1962 to 1984.-History:...

     then published the Little Stooges series (7 issues, 1972–74) with story and art by Norman Maurer
    Norman Maurer
    Norman Albert Maurer , a comic book artist and writer, was also a director and producer of films and television shows.-Comic books:...

    , Moe's son-in-law. This series featured the adventures of three fictional sons of the Three Stooges, as sort of modern-day teen-age versions of the characters.
  • Eclipse Comics
    Eclipse Comics
    Eclipse Comics was an American comic book publisher, one of several independent publishers during the 1980s and early 1990s. In 1978, it published the first graphic novel intended for the newly created comic book specialty store market...

     published the Three-D Three Stooges series (3 issues, 1986–1987) which reprinted stories from the St. John Publications series.
  • Malibu Comics
    Malibu Comics
    Malibu Comics was an American comic book publisher active in the late 1980s and early 1990s, best known for its Ultraverse line of superhero titles. The company's headquarters was in Calabasas, California. Malibu imprints included Aircel Comics and Eternity Comics...

     did a couple of one-shot comics, reprinting stories from the Gold Key Comics in 1989 and 1991.

Music


Beginning in 1959, the Three Stooges began to appear in a series of novelty records. Their first recording was a 45 rpm single of the title song from Have Rocket, Will Travel. The trio released additional singles and LPs on the Golden and Coral labels, mixing comedy adventure albums and off-beat renditions of children's songs. Their final recording was the 1966 Yogi Bear and the Three Stooges Meet the Mad, Mad, Mad Dr. No-No
Yogi Bear and the Three Stooges Meet the Mad, Mad, Mad Dr. No-No
Yogi Bear and the Three Stooges Meet the Mad, Mad, Mad Dr. No-No is a 1966 comedy album produced and released by Hanna-Barbera Records. The album presents the Three Stooges as inept park rangers who are called upon to rescue Yogi Bear after he is kidnapped by Dr...

, which incorporated the Three Stooges into the cast of the Yogi Bear
Yogi Bear
Yogi Bear is a fictional bear who appears in animated cartoons created by Hanna-Barbera Productions. He made his debut in 1958 as a supporting character in The Huckleberry Hound Show. Yogi Bear was the first breakout character created by Hanna-Barbera, and was eventually more popular than...

 cartoons.

The Stooges are referenced in the video for Weird Al Yankovic's Like a Surgeon
Like A Surgeon
"Like a Surgeon" is a song by "Weird Al" Yankovic. It is a parody of "Like a Virgin" by Madonna.-1985 release:The following tracks are on the single:# "Like a Surgeon" – 3:27# "Slime Creatures from Outer Space" – 4:23...

 with a hospital PA system asked for "Dr. Howard, Dr. Fine, Dr. Howard."

Radio


Sirius XM Radio aired a special about the Stooges hosted by Tom Bergeron
Tom Bergeron
Tom Bergeron is an American television personality and game show host, best known as the host of the ABC reality series Dancing with the Stars and host of America's Funniest Home Videos . He was also host of Hollywood Squares and a fill-in host for Who Wants to Be a Millionaire...

 on Friday, July 31, 2009, at 2:00PM on the Sirius Howard 101 channel. Bergeron had conducted the interviews at the age of 17 back when he was still in high school in 1971. The television host had the tapes in storage for many years and was convinced on air during a Howard Stern Radio interview to bring them in and turn it into a special show by Howard Stern himself, upon learning how much of a fan Bergeron was of the Three Stooges, as is he. Bergeron agreed.

After finding "the lost tapes," Bergeron brought them into Howard Stern's production studio. He stated that the tapes were so old that the tapes with the Larry Fine interviews began to shred as Howard Stern's radio engineers ran them through their cart players. They only really had the one shot, and fortunately for Three Stooges fans, the tapes were saved.

"The Lost Stooges Tapes" were hosted by Tom Bergeron with modern commentary on the almost 40 year old interviews that he had conducted with Larry Fine and Moe Howard. At the times of these interviews, Moe was still living at home and Larry had suffered a stroke and was living in a Senior Citizen's home.

Television



In addition to the unsuccessful television series pilots Jerks of All Trades, The Three Stooges Scrapbook
The Three Stooges Scrapbook
The Three Stooges Scrapbook was an unaired 1960 television pilot starring The Three Stooges . The pilot featured the slapstick trio getting evicted from a rooming house for cooking in their apartment, looking for a new place to live, finding refuge in the home of a mad inventor , and presenting an...

, and the incomplete Kook's Tour
Kook's Tour
Kook's Tour is the title of an American short comedy film produced in late 1969 and early 1970. It was the final film to star the Three Stooges and originally intended as part of a television series. However, on January 9, 1970, before filming was completed, Larry Fine suffered a severe stroke,...

, the Stooges appeared in a show called The New Three Stooges
The New Three Stooges
The New Three Stooges is a syndicated television program that ran from 1965-1966 starring the Three Stooges. The show follows the trio's antics both in live-action and animated segments. The cast consisted of Moe Howard, Larry Fine and Curly-Joe DeRita, with actor and close friend Emil Sitka...

 which ran from 1965 to 1966. This series featured a mix of thirty-nine live-action segments which were used as wraparounds to 156 animated Stooges shorts. The New Three Stooges became the only regularly scheduled television show in history for the Stooges. Unlike other films shorts that aired on television, like the Looney Tunes
Looney Tunes
Looney Tunes is a Warner Bros. animated cartoon series. It preceded the Merrie Melodies series and was Warner Bros.'s first animated theatrical series. Since its first official release, 1930's Sinkin' in the Bathtub, the series has become a worldwide media franchise, spawning several television...

, Tom and Jerry
Tom and Jerry
Tom and Jerry are the cat and mouse cartoon characters that were evolved starting in 1939.Tom and Jerry also may refer to:Cartoon works featuring the cat and mouse so named:* The Tom and Jerry Show...

, and Popeye
Popeye
Popeye the Sailor is a cartoon fictional character created by Elzie Crisler Segar, who has appeared in comic strips and animated cartoons in the cinema as well as on television. He first appeared in the daily King Features comic strip Thimble Theatre on January 17, 1929...

, the film shorts of the Stooges never had a regularly scheduled national television program to air in, neither on network nor syndicated. When Columbia/Screen Gems licensed the film library to television, the shorts aired in any fashion the local stations chose (examples: late-night "filler" material between the end of the late movie and the channel's sign-off time; in "marathon" sessions running shorts back-to-back for one, one-and-a-half, or two hours; etc.)

Two episodes of Hanna-Barbera
Hanna-Barbera
Hanna-Barbera Productions, Inc. was an American animation studio that dominated North American television animation during the second half of the 20th century...

's The New Scooby-Doo Movies
The New Scooby-Doo Movies
The New Scooby-Doo Movies is the second incarnation of the Hanna-Barbera Saturday morning cartoon Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!. It premiered on September 9, 1972 and ran for two seasons on CBS as the only hour-long Scooby-Doo series...

 aired on CBS
CBS
CBS Broadcasting Inc. is a major US commercial broadcasting television network, which started as a radio network. The name is derived from the initials of the network's former name, Columbia Broadcasting System. The network is sometimes referred to as the "Eye Network" in reference to the shape of...

 featuring animated Stooges as guest stars: the premiere, "Ghastly Ghost Town" (September 9, 1972) and "The Ghost of the Red Baron" (November 18, 1972). There also was a short-lived animated series, also produced by Hanna-Barbera, titled The Robonic Stooges
The Robonic Stooges
The Robonic Stooges was a 30-minute Saturday morning animated series featuring the characters of The Three Stooges in new roles as clumsy crime-fighting bionic superheroes...

, originally seen as a featured segment on The Skatebirds
The Skatebirds
The Skatebirds was a 60-minute show on CBS Saturday mornings from 1977-78, produced by Hanna-Barbera Productions. The show featured four short segments hosted by live-action wraparounds featuring "The Skatebirds", three large birds played by actors in costumes.The Skatebirds, so-called because they...

 (CBS
CBS
CBS Broadcasting Inc. is a major US commercial broadcasting television network, which started as a radio network. The name is derived from the initials of the network's former name, Columbia Broadcasting System. The network is sometimes referred to as the "Eye Network" in reference to the shape of...

, 1977–1978), featuring Moe, Larry, and Curly (voiced by Paul Winchell
Paul Winchell
Paul Winchell was an American ventriloquist, voice actor and comedian, whose career flourished in the 1950s and 1960s...

, Joe Baker and Frank Welker
Frank Welker
Franklin Wendell "Frank" Welker is an American actor who specializes in voice acting and has contributed character voices and other vocal effects to American television and motion pictures.-Acting career:...

, respectively) as bionic cartoon superheroes with extendable limbs, similar to the later Inspector Gadget
Inspector Gadget
Inspector Gadget is an animated television series that revolves around the adventures of a clumsy, simple-witted cyborg detective named Inspector Gadget – a human being with various bionic gadgets built into his body. Gadget's arch-nemesis is Dr...

. The Robonic Stooges later aired as a separate half-hour series, retitled The Three Robonic Stooges (each half-hour featured two segments of The Three Robonic Stooges and one segment of Woofer And Whimper, Dog Detectives, the latter re-edited from episodes of Clue Club
Clue Club
Clue Club is a 30-minute Saturday morning animated series produced by Hanna-Barbera Productions from August 14, 1976 to September 3, 1977 on CBS....

, an earlier Hanna-Barbera cartoon series). There are also many Stooges references in the sitcom ALF
ALF (TV series)
ALF is an American science fiction sitcom that originally aired on NBC from 1986 to 1990, created by Paul Fusco. The title character was Gordon Shumway, a friendly extraterrestrial nicknamed ALF , who crash lands in the garage of the suburban middle-class Tanner family.The series starred Max...

.

In the episode "Beware The Creeper" of The New Batman Adventures
The New Batman Adventures
The New Batman Adventures is the successor to Batman: The Animated Series produced by Warner Bros. Animation. Although bearing different character designs and animation styles, both shows take place in the same continuity, with TNBA set two years after BTAS. The series aired on The WB from...

. the Joker retreats to his hide-out after a quick fight with Batman. He yells out for his three henchmen "Moe? Larr? Cur?" only to find that they are not there. Shortly after that, Batman comes across these three goons in a pool hall; they have distinctive accents and hair styles similar to those of Moe, Larry, and Curly. These henchmen are briefly seen throughout the rest of the season.

2000 television film


In spring of 2000, longtime Stooge fan Mel Gibson
Mel Gibson
Mel Colm-Cille Gerard Gibson, AO is an American actor, film director, producer and screenwriter. Born in Peekskill, New York, Gibson moved with his parents to Sydney, Australia when he was 12 years old and later studied acting at the Australian National Institute of Dramatic Art.After appearing in...

 executive-produced a TV movie
Television movie
A television film is a feature film that is a television program produced for and originally distributed by a television network, in contrast to...

 (The Three Stooges) about the lives and careers of the comedians. Playing Moe was Paul Ben-Victor
Paul Ben-Victor
Paul Ben-Victor is an American actor.Ben-Victor was born Paul Friedman, in Brooklyn, New York, the son of Leah Kornfeld, a playwright, and Victor Friedman. Ben-Victor debuted on the small screen in 1987 in the made-for-TV movie Blood Vows: The Story of a Mafia Wife and on an episode of Cagney &...

, Evan Handler
Evan Handler
Evan Handler is an American actor who is best known for playing Harry Goldenblatt, Charlotte's divorce attorney and later husband, on Sex and the City, and Charlie Runkle, Hank's comically bumbling friend and agent, on Californication.-Early life:Handler was born in New York City, the son of Enid...

 was Larry, John Kassir
John Kassir
John Kassir is an American actor, voice artist, and comedian who is best known as the voice of the Crypt Keeper in HBO's, Tales from the Crypt franchise...

 was Shemp and Michael Chiklis
Michael Chiklis
Michael Charles Chiklis is an American actor, voice actor, occasional director and television producer. Some of the previous roles for which he is best known include Commissioner Tony Scali on the ABC police drama The Commish, LAPD Detective Vic Mackey on the FX police drama The Shield, Thing in...

 was Curly. It was filmed in Australia
Australia
Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

 and was produced for and broadcast on ABC
American Broadcasting Company
The American Broadcasting Company is an American commercial broadcasting television network. Created in 1943 from the former NBC Blue radio network, ABC is owned by The Walt Disney Company and is part of Disney-ABC Television Group. Its first broadcast on television was in 1948...

. It was based on Michael Fleming's authorized biography of the Stooges, "The Three Stooges: From Amalgamated Morons to American Icons". Its unflattering portrayal of Ted Healy led Healy's son to give media interviews calling the film inaccurate. Additional errors of fact included the hints that Moe Howard was down on his luck later in life, worked as a gofer at the studio where he and his brothers had formerly worked as actors and that he never owned his own house. In reality, Moe was the most careful with his money, which he invested well. He and his wife Helen owned the comfortable house in Toluca Lake in which they raised their children.

The film regularly runs on the American Movie Classics
AMC (TV network)
AMC is a cable television specialty channel that primarily airs movies, along with a limited amount of original programming. The letters originally stood for American Movie Classics; however since 2002, the full name has been deemphasized as a result of a major shift in programming...

 (AMC) channel.

Feature film revival



A film about the Three Stooges, simply titled The Three Stooges, is currently in development with 20th Century Fox
20th Century Fox
Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation — also known as 20th Century Fox, or simply 20th or Fox — is one of the six major American film studios...

 and will be directed by the Farrelly Brothers
Farrelly brothers
Peter John Farrelly and Robert Leo "Bobby" Farrelly, Jr. , professionally known as the Farrelly Brothers are screenwriters and directors of ten comedy films, including There's Something About Mary; Dumb and Dumber; Kingpin; Hall Pass; Me, Myself & Irene; Shallow Hal; Stuck on You; Osmosis Jones;...

. The film has been in what one critic has dubbed "development hell
Development hell
In the jargon of the media-industry, "development hell" is a period during which a film or other project is trapped in development...

". The Farrellys, who have wanted to make this film since 1996, have said that they were not going to do a biopic or remake, but instead new Three Stooges episodes set in the present day. The plot of the episodes is said to be an adventure that revolves around the Stooges characters.

The studio has had a difficult time putting together a cast to play the Three Stooges. Originally slated were Sean Penn
Sean Penn
Sean Justin Penn is an American actor, screenwriter and film director, also known for his political and social activism...

 to play Larry, Benicio del Toro
Benicio del Toro
Benicio Monserrate Rafael del Toro Sánchez is a Puerto Rican and Spanish actor and film producer. He won an Academy Award, a Golden Globe Award, a Screen Actors Guild Award, and a BAFTA Award for his role as Javier Rodríguez in Traffic . He is also known for his roles as Fred Fenster in The Usual...

 to play Moe and Jim Carrey
Jim Carrey
James Eugene "Jim" Carrey is a Canadian-American actor and comedian. He has received two Golden Globe Awards and has also been nominated on four occasions. Carrey began comedy in 1979, performing at Yuk Yuk's in Toronto, Ontario...

 to play Curly. Both Sean Penn and Benicio del Toro left the project but returned while no official confirmation has been made about Jim Carrey. When del Toro was interviewed on MTV News for The Wolfman, he spoke about playing Moe. He was later asked who was going to play Larry and Curly in the film and commented that he still thought that Sean Penn and Jim Carrey were going to play them, though he added "Nothing is for sure yet."
A story in the Hollywood Reporter stated that Will Sasso
Will Sasso
William "Will" Sasso is a Canadian comedian and actor. He is most notable for his membership in the recurring cast of comedians on the American sketch comedy series MADtv, spending five seasons on the show.-Early life:...

 will play Curly in the upcoming comedy and that Hank Azaria
Hank Azaria
Henry Albert "Hank" Azaria is an American film, television and stage actor, director, voice actor, and comedian. He is noted for being one of the principal voice actors on the animated television series The Simpsons , on which he performs the voices of Moe Szyslak, Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, Chief...

 is the front runner to play Moe. Sean Hayes
Sean Hayes (actor)
Sean Patrick Hayes is an American actor and comedian. He is widely known for his role as Jack McFarland in the NBC sitcom Will & Grace, for which he won an Emmy Award, four SAG Awards, one American Comedy Award, and six Golden Globes nominations.He also portrayed comedian Jerry Lewis in the...

 of Will & Grace
Will & Grace
Will & Grace was an American television sitcom that was originally broadcast on NBC from September 21, 1998 to May 18, 2006 for a total of eight seasons. Will & Grace remains the most successful television series with gay principal characters...

 fame has officially been cast as Larry Fine, while Chris Diamantopoulos
Chris Diamantopoulos
-Early Life:Diamantopoulos was born in Toronto, Canada and he attended East York Collegiate Institute. He is of Greek descent.-Career:He portrayed Robin Williams in Behind the Camera: The Unauthorized Story of 'Mork & Mindy', a television movie about the behind-the-scenes drama during the making of...

 was cast as Moe. On April 27, Jane Lynch
Jane Lynch
Jane Marie Lynch is an American comedian, actress and singer. She gained fame in Christopher Guest's improv mockumentary pictures such as Best in Show and is currently best known for playing the role of Sue Sylvester in the television series Glee...

 joined the cast; she will be playing a nun.
The film will be released on April 4, 2012.

Video games


In 1984 Gottlieb
Gottlieb
Gottlieb was an arcade game corporation based in Chicago, Illinois. The company was established by David Gottlieb in 1927, initially producing pinball machines while later expanding into various other games including pitch-and-bats, bowling games, and eventually video arcade games .Like other...

 released an arcade game featuring the Stooges trying to find three kidnapped brides. Later in 1987, game developers Cinemaware
Cinemaware
Cinemaware was a computer game developer and publisher that released several popular titles in the 1980s based on various movie themes. The company was resurrected in 2000, before being acquired by eGames in 2005.-Cinemaware Corp...

 released a successful Three Stooges computer game, available for Apple IIGS
Apple IIGS
The Apple , the fifth and most powerful model in the Apple II series of personal computers produced by Apple Computer. The "GS" in the name stands for Graphics and Sound, referring to its enhanced graphics and sound capabilities, both of which greatly surpassed previous models of the line...

, Amiga
Amiga
The Amiga is a family of personal computers that was sold by Commodore in the 1980s and 1990s. The first model was launched in 1985 as a high-end home computer and became popular for its graphical, audio and multi-tasking abilities...

, Commodore 64
Commodore 64
The Commodore 64 is an 8-bit home computer introduced by Commodore International in January 1982.Volume production started in the spring of 1982, with machines being released on to the market in August at a price of US$595...

, MS-DOS
MS-DOS
MS-DOS is an operating system for x86-based personal computers. It was the most commonly used member of the DOS family of operating systems, and was the main operating system for IBM PC compatible personal computers during the 1980s to the mid 1990s, until it was gradually superseded by operating...

, and Nintendo Entertainment System
Nintendo Entertainment System
The Nintendo Entertainment System is an 8-bit video game console that was released by Nintendo in North America during 1985, in Europe during 1986 and Australia in 1987...

 (NES). Based on the Stooges earning money by doing odd jobs to prevent the foreclosure of an orphanage, it incorporated audio from the original films and was popular enough to be reissued for the Game Boy Advance
Game Boy Advance
The is a 32-bit handheld video game console developed, manufactured, and marketed by Nintendo. It is the successor to the Game Boy Color. It was released in Japan on March 21, 2001; in North America on June 11, 2001; in Australia and Europe on June 22, 2001; and in the People's Republic of China...

 in 2002, as well as for PlayStation
PlayStation
The is a 32-bit fifth-generation video game console first released by Sony Computer Entertainment in Japan on December 3, .The PlayStation was the first of the PlayStation series of consoles and handheld game devices. The PlayStation 2 was the console's successor in 2000...

 in 2004.

In foreign languages


In most other languages, the Three Stooges are known by their English name. However, in Chinese, the trio is known as Sānge Chòu Píjiàng (三個臭皮匠) or Huóbǎo Sānrénzǔ (活寶三人組). Sānge Chòu Píjiàng, literally "Three Smelly Shoemakers", derives from a saying in the Romance of the Three Kingdoms
Romance of the Three Kingdoms
Romance of the Three Kingdoms, written by Luo Guanzhong in the 14th century, is a Chinese historical novel based on the events in the turbulent years near the end of the Han Dynasty and the Three Kingdoms era of Chinese history, starting in 169 and ending with the reunification of the land in...

: Sāngè chòu píjiàng shèngguò yīgè Zhūgě Liàng (三個臭皮匠,勝過一個諸葛亮) or "Three smelly shoemakers (are enough to) overcome one Zhuge Liang
Zhuge Liang
Zhuge Liang was a chancellor of the state of Shu Han during the Three Kingdoms period of Chinese history. He is often recognised as the greatest and most accomplished strategist of his era....

 [a hero of the story]", i.e. three inferior people can overpower a superior person when they combine their strength. Huóbǎo Sānrénzǔ translates as "Trio of Buffoons".

In Japanese
Japanese language
is a language spoken by over 130 million people in Japan and in Japanese emigrant communities. It is a member of the Japonic language family, which has a number of proposed relationships with other languages, none of which has gained wide acceptance among historical linguists .Japanese is an...

 they are known as San Baka Taishō (三馬鹿大将) meaning "Three Idiot Generals" or "Three Baka
Baka (fool)
Baka is a frequently used Japanese word meaning "fool; idiot; jerk; dolt; imbecile; foolish; stupid; worthless; absurd; ridiculous; idiotic".-Word:...

 Generals". The Japanese term baka
Baka (fool)
Baka is a frequently used Japanese word meaning "fool; idiot; jerk; dolt; imbecile; foolish; stupid; worthless; absurd; ridiculous; idiotic".-Word:...

 (馬鹿, "fool" or "idiot", lit. "horse deer") is associated with the Chinese idiom zhǐlù wéimǎ (指鹿為馬; lit. "point at a deer and call it a horse", in Japanese shika o sashite uma to nasu [鹿を指して馬と為す]) meaning "deliberate misrepresentation for ulterior purposes". In Spanish
Spanish language
Spanish , also known as Castilian , is a Romance language in the Ibero-Romance group that evolved from several languages and dialects in central-northern Iberia around the 9th century and gradually spread with the expansion of the Kingdom of Castile into central and southern Iberia during the...

 they are known as Los tres chiflados or, roughly, "The Three Crackpots". In French
French language
French is a Romance language spoken as a first language in France, the Romandy region in Switzerland, Wallonia and Brussels in Belgium, Monaco, the regions of Quebec and Acadia in Canada, and by various communities elsewhere. Second-language speakers of French are distributed throughout many parts...

 and German
German language
German is a West Germanic language, related to and classified alongside English and Dutch. With an estimated 90 – 98 million native speakers, German is one of the world's major languages and is the most widely-spoken first language in the European Union....

 usage, the name of the trio is partially translated as Les Trois Stooges and Die drei Stooges respectively. In Thai, the trio is known as 3 สมุนจอมป่วน (3 Samunčhǭmpūan; sà mun tɕɔːm pùːan) or 3 พี่น้องจอมยุ่ง (Phīnǭngčhǭmyung; pʰîː nɔ́ːŋ tɕɔːm jûŋ). In Portuguese
Portuguese language
Portuguese is a Romance language that arose in the medieval Kingdom of Galicia, nowadays Galicia and Northern Portugal. The southern part of the Kingdom of Galicia became independent as the County of Portugal in 1095...

, they are known as Os Três Patetas in Brazil, and Os Três Estarolas in Portugal, being "estarola" a direct translation to "stooge", while "pateta" being more related to "goofy".

External links