James Francis Cagney, Jr. (17 July 1899 – 30 March 1986) was an American film actor, best remembered for playing "tough guys". In 1999, the American Film Institute ranked him eighth among the Greatest Male Stars of All Time.
For his first performing role, he danced dressed as a woman in the chorus line of the 1919 revue Every Sailor. He worked for several years as a hoofer and comedian until his first major acting role in 1925. He secured several other roles, receiving good reviews before landing the lead role in the 1929 play Penny Arcade. After rave reviews for his acting, Warners signed him on an initial $500 a week, three week contract, which was extended to a seven year contract.