Bobby Vernon (1897-1939)

Bobby Vernon - Silent Movie Actor

Popular silent film actor Bobby (sometimes spelled “Bobbie”) Vernon was born Sylvion de Jardin in Chicago, Illinois on March 9th, 1897, to actor Harry Burns and actress Dorothy Vernon, and moved at an early age with his family to San Francisco, California, where he grew up attending public school and delivering newspapers to earn extra income. Due to his parents’ influence Bobby grew up loving the theater and he appeared for a few years on the stage with Kolb and Dill in musical comedies on the road, and took German comedian Max Dill’s place as the lead when he broke his leg while appearing in “The Rollicking Girl” at the Gaiety Theater, San Francisco. Bobby moved to Long Beach, California in 1913, and began his film career as an extra and in minor roles for studios like Universal, and for Mack Sennett’s Keystone, playing comic parts and old men with wigs, including a stint playing Louise Fazenda’s father. This must have looked very odd, considering Bobby was only in his early twenties at the time. He occasionally played female impersonator roles. It wasn’t until Bobby was hired by producer Al Christie that his career took off. Bobby often played innocent country boy roles, which America loved at that time, with title names like “Petticoats and Pants” (1920), “Hey, Rube!” (1922), and “A Hickory Hick” (1923). (How times have changed.)

Bobby joined the Navy for a time during World War One, then came back to pick up his film career again. He married and had a daughter named Barbara Dorothy Vernon. His acting career died out when the sound era began. He made a handful of early talkies and then retired from the screen to be a writer and comedy supervisor at Paramount Studios, for actors such as W.C. Fields and Bing Crosby. Bobby Vernon died prematurely of a sudden heart attack, on June 28th, 1939 in Hollywood, California. He was only forty-two years old.

~ Copyright © 2004

Vintage Bio from “Who’s Who On The Screen” (1920): “Sylvion de Jardiens was too long a name for Bobbie Vernon, so they called him Bobbie around the theater when he began understudying musical comedy stars and doing bits on the stage. Bobbie is a product of Long Beach, California and was a newsboy of no mean ability before he got into the movies in a black face bit with Fatty Arbuckle. Now he is featured in Christie Comedies and he has become a veritable matinee idol. Bobbie is popular with all the children and dogs about the Christie studios in Hollywood and is hailed affectionately from all sides simply by the name of “Bobbie.” He has pleasant blue eyes, medium brown hair, weighs a hundred and thirty-five pounds and reaches the boyish height of five feet two inches.”

Bobby Vernon’s Silent Films

His Angel Child (1929) …. Jerry
Sappy Service (1929) …. The process server
Hold ‘Er Cowboy (1928)
Sock Exchange, The (1928) …. Bobby
Stop Kidding (1928) …. Bobby
Sweeties (1928)
Duck Out (1927)
Ride ‘Em Cowboy (1927) …. Billy
Save the Pieces (1927)
Splash Yourself (1927) …. Hans Offit
Heebee Jeebees (1927) …. Professor
Broken China (1926)
Air Tight (1925)
French Pastry (1925)
Yes, Yes, Babette (1925) …. Bobby
Bright Lights (1925)
Cornfed (1924)
Second Childhood (1923)
A Hickory Hick (1923)
Plumb Crazy (1923)
Choose Your Weapons (1922)
Hey, Rube! (1922)
His Beach of Promise (1922)
Homespun Hero, A (1921)
Petticoats and Pants (1920)
All Jazzed Up (1920)
Love in a Hurry (1919/II)
Sea Sirens (1919)
Kiss the Bride (1919)
He Was No Lady (1919)
Pullman Bride, A (1917) …. Bobby
Sultan’s Wife, The (1917) …. Bobby
Whose Baby? (1917/II)
Dangers of a Bride (1917)
Teddy at the Throttle (1917) …. Bobbie Knight, A Fickle Hearted Youth
Haystacks and Steeples (1916) …. Bobby
Hearts and Sparks (1916) …. Bobby
Nick of Time Baby, The (1916) …. Bobby
Social Club, A (1916) …. Bobby
… aka Social Cub, A (1916) (USA)
Kitty from the City (1916)
Danger Girl, The (1916) …. Bobbie, a young gentleman
Their Social Smash (1916)
Dash of Courage, A (1916)
Family Affair, A (1916) (as Bobbie Vernon)
His Pride and Shame (1916)
Fatty and the Broadway Stars (1915) …. Actor
Innocent Villain, An (1915) (as Bobbie Vernon)
He Couldn’t Support His Wife (1915)
He Couldn’t Fool His Mother-in-Law (1915)
Hungry Actors, The (1915)
… aka Into the Light (1915) (USA)
Vaudry Jewels, The (1915)
Love and Graft (1914)
Jam and Jealousy (1914)
Oh! What’s the Use? (1914)
Well! Well! (1914)
What Happened to Schultz? (1914)
That’s Fair Enough (1914)
Wifies’ Busy Day (1914)
Polo Champions, The (1914)
His Wife’s Family (1914)
Love, Roses and Trousers (1914)
Captain Kid’s Priceless Treasures (1914)
Fatal Letter, The (1914)
Mike Searches for His Long-Lost Brother (1914)
Love and Electricity (1914)
Their First Anniversary (1914)
Schultz the Barber (1914)
Bucket Sharpers, The (1914)
Sharps Want a Flat, The (1914)
Schultz the Paperhanger (1914)
Head Waiter, The (1914)
Midnight Alarm, The (1914)
Love and Politics (1914)
Heaven Will Protect the Working Girl (1914)
Mystery of a Taxicab, The (1914)
Saving the Child (1914)
Some Nightmare (1914)
Mike and Jake in Society (1913)
She Should Worry (1913)
Mike and Jake as Pugilists (1913)
For Art and Love (1913)
Mike and Jake as Heroes (1913)
Joy Riders, The (1913)
Mike and Jake at the Beach (1913) (as Bob Vernon) …. The Lifeguard
Almost an Actress (1913) …. Benny
Mike and Jake at College (1913)
Mike and Jake Among the Cannibals (1913)
Tramp Dentists, The (1913) (as Sylvion De Jardins)
Thou Shalt Not Rubber (1913) (as Sylvion De Jardins)
His Priceless Treasure (1913) (as Sylvion De Jardins)
Cheese Special, The (1913) (as Sylvion De Jardins)
Great Towel Robbery, The (1913) (as Silvion De Jardins) …. Rube

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