Rooney & Davis – Two Very Popular Movie Stars – 1940
Mickey Rooney appeared in over 300 motion picture and television features in a 90 year career, yet never in a film with Bette Davis.
The occasion is a perfect PR ploy from newspaper writer Ed Sullivan. Before Sullivan was a television star, his syndicated column ran in hundreds of newspapers. From the original news slug:
The irrepressible Mickey Rooney planted a kiss on the cheek of Bette Davis when they met to receive popularity crowns from Ed Sullivan, columnist, who conducted a nation-wide poll. Tribune readers joined in selecting the most popular star. AP Wirephoto – January 26, 1940