Joe Bordeaux


Joseph Emil Bordeaux was born on March 9, 1886 in the town of Valley Field somewhere in Canada. His parents were French-Canadian, although his father, also named Joseph, was born in Colorado and died sometime before 1918. Bordeaux became a part of Mack Sennett’s Keystone Company around 1914 as a property man and also played bit parts in the comedies. He appeared in dozens of Keystone films, turning up as everything from a farmhand to a Keystone Kop, and was talented at performing pratfalls. Often he was credited as “Joe Bordeau.“ He was friends with Roscoe Arbuckle and appeared in the majority of the films he directed–one of his larger roles was in When Love Took Wings (1915), playing one of Arbuckle‘s romantic rivals. When Arbuckle was given his own studio, Comique, Bordeaux left his position as head property man at Keystone and became a part of Arbuckle’s team. By the late teens he also began directing, turning out shorts for King-Bee and Sunshine Comedies. In the mid-twenties he directed shorts for Mack Sennett along with co-director Eddie Cline.  Throughout the twenties Bordeaux continued to do property work, direct, and play small, often uncredited supporting roles in shorts and features for various companies (he appears briefly in Buster Keaton’s Steamboat Bill Jr.).  By the forties he was working exclusively as an extra. His last known role was as an extra in Chaplin’s The Great Dictator. He was married to Madeline Searby until his death on September 10, 1950, and the two had one daughter, Jewell.


Walker, Brent E.  Mack Sennett’s Fun Factory.  Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Co., 2010.
Erickson, Hal.

1 thought on “Joe Bordeaux

  1. Pingback: One Of The Unsung–A Nod To Bit Player Joe Bordeaux | Silent-ology

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