N/A (passed away Jul. 27th, 2003)
Eltham, London, England, UK
Guest TV Roles
Comedian, born in London and moved to Bristol before emigrating with his parents to the US in 1908. After some years on the stage as a dancer and comedian, he made his first film appearance in The Big Broadcast of 1938 (1938) singing "Thanks for the Memories", which became his signature tune. In partnership with Bing Crosby and Dorothy Lamour, he appeared in the highly successful "Road to ..." comedies (1940-1952), and in many others until the early 1970s. During World War II and the Korean and Vietnam wars he spent much time entertaining the troops in the field. For these activities and for his continued contributions to the industry he was given a special Academy Award on five occasions.
- His mother's name was Agnes Townes (she was a concert singer). He had many brothers, including 'Jack Hope' (qv) (1898 - 1962) who was his personal manager. 'James Hope (I)' (qv) was Director of Hope Enterprises. Ivor Hope (? - 1969) was President of Hope Metal Products. George Hope (? - 1969) was a production company coordinator. Two more brothers were Sidney Hope (? - 1946) and Frederick Hope.
- Served as United Service Organizations, Inc. (USO) Entertainment Coordinator from 1941 - 2001. Retired his post at age 98 in favor of 'Wayne Newton' (qv).
- He and best friend 'Bing Crosby' (qv) were planning to make one last "road" picture in early 1977, but Bing died before filming. Bob was so broken up about Bing's death that he couldn't sleep for days on end. He stated that it was one of the worst times of his life and that his wife was his rock who got him through the tough time.
- Spent his 99th birthday--29 May 2002--at home in Toluca Lake, CA. Wife 'Dolores Hope' (qv)'s 93rd birthday was just two days before. Los Angeles National Cemetery dedicated veterans' chapel in his name to salute his lifetime of service entertaining U.S. troops.
- 1995: National Medal of Arts: presented by President 'Bill Clinton (I)' (qv).
- Awarded a Presidential Medal of Freedom by President 'Lyndon Johnson (I)' (qv) on his last day in office. (January 20th 1969)
- Was the first honoree of the "'Dean Martin' Celebrity Roasts" series on October 30, 1974. The Celebrity Roasts had begun in the last season (1973-74) of _"The Dean Martin Show" (1965)_ (qv) and were so popular that after that show went off the air, the "Celebrity Roasts" continued as specials.
- As a young comedian, he won a 'Charles Chaplin' (qv) look-alike contest in Cleveland.