Billy Soose

  1. Gary Cooper, The Pride of the Yankees, 1942.        Producer Samuel Goldwyn won the battle to make a biopic of baseball great Lou Gehrig – who died at 40 of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (aka Lou Gehrig’s Disease), after a moving farewell to his fans:  “Today, I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the earth.” His widow, Eleanor, wanted Cooper or Spencer Tracy to play Lou. They were not alone. Also on the mound were Eddie Albert, Brian Donlevy, Cary Grant. Plus two other real sports heroes: middle-weight champion boxer Soose – New York Yankee and ex-New York Yankee pitcher Waite Hoyt. Gehrig appeared as himself in Rawhide, 1937, his film despite being listed by producer Sol Lesser to head his Tarzan series. Until seeing Lou’s legs. “More functional than decorative.”

 Birth year: 1915Death year: 1998Other name: Casting Calls:  1