James Cagney: The greatest actor who ever was


James Cagney has always been one of my favorite actors. IMO, he is a better dancer than Astaire, Kelly, and anyone else. Here are some of my favorite roles he’s played:


Yankee Doodle Boy - James Cagney - YouTube (the greatest dance routine ever done–and he danced on his tip-toes before Michael Jackson)

James Cagney from “THAT YANKEE DOODLE DANDY” - YouTube (his last interview)

Great Dance Routine: James Cagney and Bob Hope - YouTube (Cagney & Bob Hope–unbelievable!!–never knew Hope could dance!)

James Cagney FAVORITE MOMENTS [FULL HD] - YouTube (Cagney’s greatest hits!)

He was married to the same woman for 64 years. (1922-1986)

It is interesting to note that despite Cagney’s stellar performances in so many films, he never once won an Oscar.


Love his movies! I never looked into his politics and found this interesting.

According to his autobiography his brother Bill (who was also his manager) actively pursued the role of Cohan in the ultra-patriotic film Yankee Doodle Dandy (1942) as a way of removing the taint of Cagney’s radical activities in the 1930s, when he was a strong Roosevelt liberal. When Cohan himself learned about Cagney’s background as a song-and-dance man in vaudeville, he okay-ed him for the project.

Lost the role of Knute Rockne to his friend Pat O’Brien when the administration of Notre Dame - which had approval over all aspects of the filming - nixed Cagney because of his support of the far-left (and anti-Catholic) Spanish Republic in the then-ongoing Spanish Civil War.

Originally a very left-wing Democrat activist during the 1930s, Cagney later switched his viewpoint and became progressively more conservative with age. He supported his friend Ronald Reagan’s campaigns for the Governorship of California in 1966 and 1970, as well as his Presidential campaigns in 1980 and 1984. President Reagan delivered the eulogy at Cagney’s funeral in 1986.

James Cagney - Biography


Yes, he was an amazing man. I’ve always liked him even as a youngster I enjoyed his movies. I guess a lot of people become more conservative as they age. In the movie “Yankee Doodle Dandy” the girl that played his sister (Cohan’s sister) was his real-life sister. If you look closely the next time you watch it, you can see the resemblance.