The Three Stooges were an essential ingredient in the diets of just about every kid growing up in the U.S. from the 1930s on. In the 1950s, when Television became the all-pervading medium it is now, The Three Stooges got a new lease on life via Saturday morning re-runs of their legendary shorts which ran in theaters in the 1930s and 1940s.
Of the three, Moe Howard was the leader of the group, and him telling his story as part of the radio interview series ‘Whatever Became Of . . .” is pretty illuminating if you don’t already know it.
Fans know the story – because The Three Stooges have become such a part of Americana, there have been books and documentaries and a lot of essays written about them over the years. So I’m sure there’s not much ground that hasn’t been covered here. However, if you’ve just discovered them, or heard about them or have seen some of their material via TMC or YouTube and are curious to know a bit more or if you haven’t actually heard Moe Howard discuss his career, here is a good place to start.
Moe Howard died of lung cancer at age 77 on May 4, 1975, at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, where he had been admitted a week earlier in April, just over three months after Larry Fine’s death, and more than a month before his 78th birthday. He was a heavy smoker for much of his adult life. He was interred in an outdoor crypt at Culver City’s Hillside Memorial Park Cemetery. His wife Helen Schonberger died of a heart attack later that year on October 31, 1975, at age 75 and was interred in the crypt next to him on the right. At the time of his death, Howard was working on his autobiography titled I Stooged to Conquer. It was released in 1977 as Moe Howard and the Three Stooges.
Howard and the Three Stooges received a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on August 30, 1983, at 1560 Vine Street.
Howard was portrayed by Paul Ben-Victor in The Three Stooges, a 2000 made-for-TV biopic that focused on the trio’s years in show business and their off-screen lives. In the 2012 Farrelly brothers’ film The Three Stooges, Chris Diamantopoulos portrays Howard. Skyler Gisondo portrays Young Howard.
Here is that interview, originally aired on July 27, 1971.