8. Mack Swain
Moroni "Mack" Swain in 1920
Moroni "Mack" Swain was born on February 16, 1876, in Salt Lake City, Utah. He began performing on vaudeville at a young age and starred in his first silent film in 1913.
Swain then starred in a series of comedy films with comic Chester Conklin, with Swain creating a character by the name of Ambrose, who appeared with Mr. Walrus (played by Conklin). The most notable films from the duo are The Battle of Ambrose and Walrus and Love, Speed & Thrills, both of which were released in 1915. Swain and Conklin also appeared together in 26 additional films.
Swain's stardom increased when he began working with silent film legend Charlie Chaplin. Swain appeared in The Idle Class, Pay Day, and The Pilgrim. He is also remembered for his large supporting role as "Big Jim McKay"' in the 1925 film The Gold Rush, which Chaplin wrote and starred in.
In 1932 Swain received an Academy Award nomination for best short, "Stout Hearts and Willing Hands." He retired soon afterward.
On August 25, 1935, Swain died in Tacoma, Washington, following an illness that lasted just a few hours.