Very popular American child actor who was for many years one of the central characters in 55 of Hal Roach's "Our Gang" shorts. Roach signed Spanky to a five year contract on November 4, 1931, with his first year's salary calling for $75 and then $100 a week. His first appearance in a Hal Roach film was in the 2-reel Our Gang short "Free Eats" (1932), at the age of 3 years old. His final film for Hal Roach was in "Came The Brawn" (1938). Spanky also went on to appear in 40 of the 52 Our Gang shorts for MGM between 1938-1942, bowing out with "Unexpected Riches" at the age of 14 years old. In total, Spanky appeared in no less than 95 Our Gang films over an eleven year period, making him one of the top 3 most prolific child stars of the series.
He is only one of two Our Gang child actors to have a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (the other is Jackie Cooper). He is the older brother of Tommy McFarland.
Depending on who you talk to, people who knew him personally will tell you how lovely he was in person; others paint a picture of a bitter, unlikeable old man.