Emil Sitka ~

The Fourth Stooge

        "The most important actor in most Stooges films, besides the Stooges themselves, was the sharp-nosed, wide-eyed Emil Sitka... His presence was such a mainstay of the operation that many thought of him as an undeclared 'fourth Stooge.'"

                                       -Moe Feinberg, Larry Fine's brother

                                         Larry The Stooge In the Middle



To communicate with friends and fans of Emil Sitka, share information about his life and career, preserve the cultural heritage of the Hollywood productions in which he participated, and promote his legacy as The Fourth Stooge.

EmilSitka.com is an on-line informational resource serving the mission of the Emil Sitka Fan Club.

The book shown below is a wonderful source of rare information about the “comedy factory’ that brought the world so many laughs with The Three Stooges and other comedians of the day. Highly recommended reading!
Both Emil Sitka and Symona Boniface appeared in many of the films discussed in the very informative book shown above, as well as many Stooge and non-Stooge shorts included in the extraordinary DVD package shown below.

EmilSitka.com / Stage

"The Viper's Fang"
"The Virgin's Dilemma"

Symona Boniface

The cast of "The Viper's Fang" or "The Virgin's Dilemma"
Emil Sitka as "Jasper, Slave to the Viper"
          This is the stage production that Emil Sitka credited for his break into professional film acting. After one of the performances, back in October 1944, talent scouts from several different studios expressed interest in him. One of them was from Columbia Pictures, and this lead to his first movie acting role in the short subject HISS AND YELL (1946) starring Vera Vague and eventually to his involvement with The Three Stooges.

          The article below only briefly mentions "The Viper's Fang" near the end, but it provides historical perspective on Emil's stage career as he prepares for "Jasper, Slave to the Viper."

From the August 1944 edition of UNO ANIMO "A monthly magazine for Safeway employees," which included Emil at the time.
          Over time, there were several incarnations of "The Viper's Fang," starting with the October 1944 production that launched Emil's film career. A few years later, the author Symona Boniface (herself an active Stooge co-star) and her husband put on a series of productions, running from one day to several weeks.
          There were six distinct presentations of this play and each had some unique characteristics. Material from my father's files, scrapbooks and photo albums has been sorted and can be viewed by individual production by clicking the links below:

Clilck the image to open Emil's scrapbook
"The Viper's Fang"
or "The Virgin's Dilemma"
Women's Clubhouse
Burbank, California

Emil Sitka credited this first production run for his break into professional film acting. After an early performance with light attendance, talent scouts from MGM and Columbia Pictures expressed interest, and this lead to his first-ever Hollywood movie acting job.
Click the picture for more details and images
"The Viper's Fang"
Campo Trading Post
Campo, California

Nearly four years after the successful premier run of "The Viper's Fang" in October 1944, the author Symona Boniface and her husband Frank Pharr decided to produce their own presentation. They assembled a cast and brought them out to their ranch in southern California to rehearse and develop the production.

Click above for more of Emil's scrapbook
"The Virgin's Dilemma"
and"All Star Olio Acts"
V. F. W. Hall
Long Beach, California

After a successful test-run in the mountains at Campo, California, the troupe brought their act to town. First stop, the Veterans of Foreign Wars Hall in Long Beach, California, considered a low-key venue chosen for it's easy-to-please audiences.

Click above to open Emil's photo album
"The Viper's Fang"
Spolin Theatre
Hollywood, California

A private performance at the Spolin Theatre in Hollywood, California, was squeezed in while preparing for their four-day run at the Crenshaw Community Fair in early November.
"The Maiden's Dilemma"
or "The Viper's Fang"
Crenshaw Community Fair
Los Angeles, California

Next up, a performance "under the big top" at a community fair in the Crenshaw district of Los Angeles, preceded by an appearance in the Crenshaw Fair Parade. Note the slightly sanitized name given this production.

Click above for Emil's clippings and photos
"The Viper's Fang"
or "The Virgin's Dilemma"

March 1949
Musart Theatre
Los Angeles, California

The final run of "The Viper's Fang" occurred in March 1949 in downtown Los Angeles at the Musart Theatre. Frequent Columbia Pictures actress and Three Stooges co-star Symona Boniface not only wrote and directed "The Viper's Fang," she also played the role of "Mag, the Hag, cook in the Vile domicile."

EmilSitka.com / Stage / The Viper's Fang / Main Page

(Main)  (Oct 1944)  (Aug 1948)  (Sept 1948)  (Oct 1948) (Nov 1948)  (Mar 1949)  (Stage)