'Our Gang' director
LOS ANGELES -- Gordon Douglas, who graduated to feature films after directing dozens of "Our Gang" episodes including an Oscar winner, died Wednesday at Hancock Park Convalescent Home after an illness. The 85-year-old director began his film career in the 1920s, appearing in small roles in several East Coast productions. He moved to Hollywood around 1930 and began work as a comedy writer for producer-director Hal Roach.
He directed 30 "Our Gang" short films before breaking into feature film directing. One of the shorts was "Bored of Education," which was honored as best one-reel short film in the 1936 Academy Awards.
Among his early features were the 1940 Laurel and Hardy comedy "Saps at Sea," "The Great Gildersleeve" and several other Gildersleeve comedies, and "If You Knew Susie," with Eddie Cantor.
He later moved on to action-adventure and drama. His better known works included the 1951 red-baiting melodrama "I Was a Communist for the FBI," the 1967 spy spoof "In Like Flint," and Westerns such as "Rio Conchos" and "Yellowstone Kelly."