McCarey was urged by his father to study law and become a lawyer. McCarey was for a short time, and never won a single case.
McCarey was named after his mother, Leona McCarey.
McCarey was the older brother of Raymond McCarey, who followed in his brother's footsteps and also became a director.
McCarey worked as a writer in a total of 88 films.
McCarey was mentored in film directing by silent movie director Tod Browning.
McCarey was married to Stella Martin. He had one daughter, Virginia McCarey.
McCarey's favorite of his own films was 1937's Make Way for Tomorrow.
McCarey directed his first film, Society Secrets, in 1921.
In 1944, Leo McCarey had the highest reported income in the United States.
Jean Renoir, a French director, once said that no director understood people better than Leo McCarey.
McCarey was the man responsible for originally teaming Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy, and also wrote and directed several early Laurel & Hardy films.
McCarey has a star on the Walk of Fame.
McCarey was 5'11" tall.
McCarey directed 110 films in his career.
McCarey is one of only seven directors who have won Best Picture, Best Director and Best Screenplay. He was also the first director to do so, in 1944 for the film, Going My Way.
McCarey: (on winning an Oscar for "The Awful Truth" as opposed to "Make Way for Tomorrow") Thanks, but you gave it to me for the wrong picture.
McCarey: You can really call Irene Dunne 'The First Lady of Hollywood', because she's the first real lady Hollywood has ever seen.
McCarey: I don't know what my formula is. I only know I like my characters to walk in clouds. I like a little bit of the fairy tale. Let others photograph the ugliness of the world. I don't want to distress people.
McCarey: I love when people laugh. I love when they cry, I like a story to say something, and I hope the audience feels happier leaving the theater than when it came in.