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This is a tribute to classic actresses, silent beauties, and forgotten starlets. We have tons of rare pictures, old Hollywood gossip, and vintage memorabilia. You will see some sexy photos and read a lot of scandalous stories because these ladies were not saints - they were legends!

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  • 03/08/13--23:07: Charlotte Greenwood

  •  (June 25, 1890 - December 28, 1977)

    Charlotte Greenwood was a zany character actress whose career spanned over forty years. She started in vaudeville, appeared in dozens of films, and even had her own radio show. At six feet tall Charlotte was nicknamed "Lady Longlegs" and became known for her high kicks. After her first marriage ended she found happiness with her second husband, songwriter Martin Broones, and their union lasted until his death in 1971.Charlotte retired from acting and passed away atthe age of eighty-seven.



    "Temperament is temper that is too old to spark." ~ Charlotte





    An autograph from Charlotte


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  • 03/11/13--13:23: Natalie Wood

  • (July 20, 1938 - November 29, 1981)

    Natalie Wood was born Natalia Nikolaevna Zakharenko on July 20, 1938, in San Francisco, California. Her mother moved them to Hollywood determined to make Natalie famous. At age nine she was cast as a cynical little girl in Miracle On 34th Street. It was a hit and she became one of the most popular child stars. In 1955 she was nominated for an Academy Award for her performance in Rebel Without A Cause. She also began an affair with the film's forty-four year old director, Nicholas Ray. Later Natalie would claim that
    when she was a teenager an older movie star raped her. She married actor Robert Wagner in December 1957. Her success continued with starring roles in West Side Story, Splendor In The Grass, and Gypsy. She divorced Robert in 1962 and had a short-lived romance with actor Warren Beatty. Depressed over her failed relationships Natalie tried to commit suicide.



    In 1969 she married producer Richard Gregson and had a daughter, Natasha. After divorcing Richard she rekindled her romance with ex-husband Robert Wagner. They remarried and in 1974 their daughter, Courtney, was born. Natalie began to work less so she could spend more time with her family. Although she suffered from a lifelong fear of dark water she and Robert owned a yacht called "The Splendor". On November 29, 1981 Natalie fell overboard and drowned. According to sources she had been drinking that night and had a fight with Robert. Natalie was just forty-three years old. She is buried at Westwood Memorial Park in Los Angeles, California. Her daughter, Natasha Gregson Wagner, also became a successful actress. In 2012 the investigation into Natalie's drowning was reopened and her official cause of death was changed from accident to "drowning and other undetermined factors".

    ~ Original biography by Elizabeth Ann 2013



    "The only time a woman is any good at changing a man is when he 
    is a baby." ~ Natalie


    A letter from Natalie


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  • 03/11/13--20:46: Greer Garson & Her Poodles

  • Greer Garson treated her poodles like children. She enrolled them 
    in charm school and enlisted them Dogs For Defense.









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  • 03/22/13--23:19: Ginger Rogers

  • (July 16, 1911 - April 25, 1995)

    Ginger Rogers was born Virginia Katherine McMath on July 16, 1911, in Independence, Missouri. Her parents divorced when she was a child and her mother Lela encouraged her to go into show business. Ginger started dancing professionally when she was a teenager. At the age of seventeen she married Jack Pepper, an actor, but they divorced two years later. After appearing in several Broadway shows Ginger began getting small roles in films. In 1933 she was paired with dancer Fred Astaire in the musical Flying Down To Rio. Ginger and Fred would make nine more movies together including The Gay Divorcee and Swing Time. They quickly became one of Hollywood's most popular screen teams. Ginger was a devout Christian Scientist who never smoked or drank alcohol. She enjoyed romances with Cary Grant and Howard Hughes. In 1934 she married actor Lew Ayres. Ginger won an Academy Award for her performance in the 1940 drama Kitty Foyle.



    Her success continued with hit movies like The Major And The Minor, Heartbeat, and Roxie Hart. By 1942 she was the highest paid actress in Hollywood. She divorced Lew and married Jack Briggs, a marine, in 1943. They were married for six years. After a brief marriage to actor Jacques Bergerac she married producer William Marshall in 1961. Ginger's last film was the 1965 drama Harlow, which was based on the life of Jean Harlow. She continued to work on the stage and made occasional guest appearances on television. Sadly her marriage to William ended after eight years. Ginger, who never had children, was devastated when her beloved mother Lela died in 1977. During her later years she suffered from diabetes and was confined to a wheelchair. In 1991 she published her autobiography Ginger: My Story.  She died on April 25, 1995 from heart failure. Ginger was cremated and buried with her mother at Oakwood Memorial Park in Chatsworth, California.

    ~ Original biography by Elizabeth Ann 2013

    With her mother Lela


    "The only way to enjoy anything in life is to earn it first." ~ Ginger


    An autographed photo of Ginger (from my collection)


    Ginger's personally owned dress (from my collection)
     

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  • 03/26/13--00:32: Lupe Velez

  • (July 18, 1908 - December 13, 1944)

    Lupe Velez was the beautiful actress known as "The Mexican Spitfire". She started her career as a dancer in Mexico and was discovered by producer Hal Roach. She became a popular comedic actress playing wild, exotic characters. Her tumultuous personal life included headline-making romances and failed marriages to Gary Cooper and Johnny Weissmuller. In 1944 Lupe, who was deeply religious, discovered she was pregnant. When her lover refused to marry she committed suicide. The myth that she was found dead in the toilet is not true.



    "I do not care what is printed about me, as long as it's the truth." ~ Lupe





    An autographed photo of Lupe (from my collection)


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  • 03/28/13--01:45: Happy Easter!

  • Are these classic beauties ready for the Easter bunny?


     Jeanette Loff

    Lana Turner

     Shirley Temple

     Ann Miller

     Susan Hayward

     Sharon Tate

     Myrna Loy

     Doris Day

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  • 04/03/13--12:39: Irene Dunne

  • (December 20, 1898 - September 4, 1990)

    Irene Marie Dunne was born on December 20, 1898, in Louisville, Kentucky. She was very close to her father who died when she was eleven. Soon after her mother moved the family to Indiana. Irene began studying music and won a prestigious scholarship to the Chicago Musical College. She dreamed of becoming an opera singer but was rejected from the Metropolitan Opera Company. After appearing in several Broadway shows she was offered a contract with RKO. In 1931 she was nominated for an Academy for her role in the western Cimmaron. Her success continued with hit movies like Love Affair, Roberta, and Showboat. At the height of her career she was earning $400,000 a year. Irene married Francis Dennis Griffin, a dentist, and in 1938 they adopted a daughter named Mary.



    She made three films with Cary Grant, including the hit comedy The Awful Truth, and would always say that her was her favorite leading man. In 1948 she received her fifth Oscar nomination for the drama I Remember Mama. She retired from making movies in the early 1950s although she continued to make appearances on television. Irene was a devout Catholic and a lifelong Republican. In 1959 President Eisenhower made her an alternate delegate to the United Nations. After the death of her husband in 1965 she devoted most of her time to doing charity work. She was given a lifetime achievement award at the Kennedy Center Honors in 1985. Irene died on September 4, 1990 from heart failure. She is buried at Calvary Cemetery in Los Angeles, California.

    ~ Original biography by Elizabeth Ann 2013

     

    "When we have learned to love our neighbor, not just our selves, no matter where we come from, then America will be perfect." ~ Irene

     


    A letter written by Irene (from my collection)

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  • 04/03/13--23:24: Poodle Lovers

  • Here are some classic beauties who loved their poodles


    Natalie Wood

     Elizabeth Taylor

    Lana Turner

    Bette Davis

     Betty Grable

    Jayne Mansfield

    Joan Crawford

     Audrey Hepburn

     Ava Gardner

    Gloria Grahame

     Ann Miller

     Gloria DeHaven

     Grace Kelly

     Barbara Stanwyck

     Constance Bennett

     Greer Garson

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  • 04/11/13--15:36: Joan Crawford

  •  (March 23, 1904 - May 10, 1977)

    Joan Crawford was born Lucille Fay LeSueur on March 23, 1904, in San Antonio, Texas. Her family was poor and her parents separated before she was born. As a young girl Joan worked as a maid to pay for her school tuition. When she was nineteen she won an amateur dance contest and decided to go to Hollywood. There are rumors that during this time she posed nude and appeared in pornographic films. She was briefly married to a saxophone player named James Welton. In 1925 she was offered a contract with MGM and was given bit parts in movies like Pretty Lady and The Circle. Her big break came in 1928 when she landed the lead role in the comedy Our Dancing Daughters. The following year she married actor Douglas Fairbanks Jr. She became one of the most successful actresses of the 1930s with starring roles in The Women, Grand Hotel, and Rain. Joan loved her fans and personally responded to much of her fan mail. She worked with Clark Gable in eight movies including Laughing Sinners and Dancing Lady. The two stars had an off-screen romance that lasted for decades. Joan was also a bi-sexual and enjoyed numerous affair with women. After divorcing Douglas she married actor Franchot Tone. She wanted to have a baby but suffered several miscarriages.



    In 1939 she divorced Franchot and adopted a daughter named Christina. Joan would later adopt a son, Christopher, and twin daughters, Cynthia and Cathy. She married Phillip Terry, an actor, in 1942 but the marriage ended four years later. After making a series of flops MGM dropped her contract. She made a comeback with the 1945 drama Mildred Pierce and won an Academy Award for her performance. Two years later she was nominated for another Oscar for her role in Possessed. Joan married Pepsi-Cola executive Alfred Steel in 1956. After his death she served on the board of directors of Pepsi-Cola. In 1963 she teamed up with her longtime rival Bette Davis to make the horror film What Ever Happened to Baby Jane. Now in her fifties Joan had a serious drinking problem and was having trouble finding work. She appeared in low budget movies like Berserk and Trog. Joan died on May 10, 1977, from pancreatic cancer. She was cremated and her ashes were interred at Ferncliff Cemetery in Hartsdale, New York. In her will she left a small sum of money to Cathy and Cynthia but gave nothing to Christopher and Christina. A few years later Christina wrote a book, Mommie Dearest, that portrayed Joan as an abusive mother. Cathy and Cynthia have always disputed Christina's claims.

    ~ Original biography by Elizabeth Ann 2013



    "I never go out unless I look like Joan Crawford the movie star. If you want to see the girl next door, go next door" ~ Joan


    A letter from Joan


     
    A bookplate that was owned by Joan (from my personal collection)

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  • 04/12/13--14:06: Bette Davis Memorabilia

  • Bette Davis is one of my favorite actresses. I have been collecting Bette memorabilia for years.
     

    The skirt Bette wore in The Great Lie

    The earrings Bette wore during her interview with Barbara Walters

     A letter written by Bette

    A pair of black gloves owned by Bette

    A book from Bette's personal library

    A heart pendant owned by Bette

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  • 04/14/13--01:25: Nearly Nude
  • These classic beauties weren't afraid to show some skin for the camera


    Norma Shearer

     Carole Lombard 

    Marion Davies

     Thelma Hill

     Jayne Mansfield

     Alice White

     
    Gwen Lee

     Paulette Goddard

     Myrna Loy

    Marilyn Monroe

    Marie Prevost

     Lucille Ball

     Joan Blondell

    Jeanette Loff

     Theda Bara

     

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  • 04/14/13--20:24: Forest Lawn's Beauties

  • These classic beauties are spending eternity at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, California


     Jean Harlow's crypt in the Great Mausoleum

     Jean in the negligee she was buried in

    William Powell and Jean's mother visiting her grave in 1938

     Carole Lombard's crypt in the Great Mausoleum

     Carole and Clark Gable at Jean Harlow's funeral in 1937

    Clara Bow's crypt in the Freedom Mausoleum

    Clara at her husband's funeral in 1962

     Mary Pickford's grave in the Garden of Memory

     Mary and Buddy Rogers at Jeannette MacDonald's funeral in 1965

     Jeanette MacDonald's crypt in the Freedom Mausoleum


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  • 04/16/13--18:05: Betty Grable

  • (December 18, 1916 - July 2, 1973)

    Betty Grable was born Elizabeth Ruth Grable on December 18, 1916, in St. Louis, Missouri. She was the youngest of three children (her brother died before Betty was born). By the age of five she was taking tap dancing and saxophone lessons. Betty's ambitious mother was determined to make her a star. They moved Hollywood when Betty was a teenager and she was often forced to lie about her age to get work. She beat out hundreds of other hopefuls to become one of the "Goldwyn Girls" and got small roles in movies like The Gay Divorcee and Pigskin Parade. Betty married former child star Jackie Coogan in November 1937 but they divorced three years later. In 1939 she starred on Broadway in the musical DuBarry Was A Lady. Betty was offered a contract with 20th Century Fox in 1940 and was given the lead in the musical Down Argentine Way. It was a smash and she became one of Hollywood's hottest actresses. More hit films followed including Moon Over Miami, Pin-Up Girl, and The Dolly Sisters. Betty fell in love with bandleader Artie Shaw and was devastated when he eloped with nineteen-year old Lana Turner. To make matters worse Betty discovered she was pregnant and had an abortion. In 1941 she became engaged to actor George Raft but ended the relationship when he could not get a divorce from his wife.

    With Jackie Coogan



    She also had brief romances with Tyrone Power and Victor Mature. Betty became the most popular sex symbol of World War 2 after a pin-up she posed for became world famous. As a publicity stunt her legs were insured for one million dollars. She married bandleader Harry James in July 1943 and had two daughters - Victoria and Jessica. Betty and Harry shared a love of horse racing and they bought several horses. By 1948 she was the highest paid woman in America. Despite all of her success she was growing tired of Hollywood and decided to stop making movies. Her final film was the 1955 musical How To Be Very, Very Popular. Betty later worked in Las Vegas and on Broadway. She also made occasional appearances on television shows like The Lucy Desi Comedy Hour. During the 1960s Betty appeared in commercials for Geritol and Playtex. After years of putting up with Harry's gambling and cheating she divorced him in 1965. Soon after she began dating a young dancer named Bob Remick. Betty was a heavy smoker who often smoked three packs of cigarettes a day. She died from lung cancer on July 2, 1973. Although she had once been a millionaire Betty was nearly broke when she passed away. She is buried at Inglewood Park Cemetery in Inglewood, California.

    ~ Original biography by Elizabeth Ann 2013

     With her daughters


    "I'm a song and dance girl. I can act enough to get by. But that's the limit of
    my talents." ~ Betty



    A Christmas card sent by Betty and Harry (from my personal collection)


    The jacket Betty wore in When My Baby Smiles At Me (from my personal collection)

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  • 04/28/13--05:41: Barbara Stanwyck

  • (July 16, 1907 - January 20, 1990)

    Barbara Stanwyck was born Ruby Catherine Stevens on July 16, 1907, in Brooklyn, New York. She was the youngest of five children. When she was four her mother was killed and shortly after her father abandoned them. Barbara would spend her childhood in a series of foster homes. At age fourteen she dropped out of school and began working odd jobs. She danced in The Ziegfeld Follies and appeared in numerous Broadway plays. In 1928 she married actor Frank Fay who helped her land a movie contract. Barbara became a star playing strong women in movies like Night Nurse and Baby Face. She and Frank adopted a son, Dion, but their marriage ended. He was an alcoholic and became jealous of her success. Although she won custody of Dion they eventually became estranged. Barbara was nominated for an Academy Award in 1937 for Stella Dallas. She would get three more Oscar nominations but never won.



    While making the drama This Is My Affair she met Robert Taylor. They were married in 1939. Barbara's success continued with the hit films Double Indemnity, Ball Of Fire, and The Lady Eve. By 1944 she was Hollywood's highest paid actress. Her marriage to Robert ended after twelve years but she would always say he was the great love of her life. There were also rumors that Barbara had lesbian lovers. During the 1960s she starred in the TV series The Big Valley and won an Emmy for The Barbara Stanywck Show. She was a lifelong Republican and devoted much of her time to charity work. Unfortunately in 1981 she was badly beaten by an intruder and a few years later her home burned down in a fire. Barbara died on January 20, 1990 from heart failure. She was cremated and her ashes were scattered in California.

    ~ Original biography by Elizabeth Ann 2013

     With Robert Taylor


    "Attention embarrasses me. I don`t like to be on display." ~ Barbara


    An autograph from Barbara (from my collection)


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  • 04/30/13--03:49: Happy Mother's Day

  • Celebrate Mother's Day with our classic beauties and their moms


     Jayne Mansfield and her mom

     Jean Harlow and Mama Jean

     Carole Landis and her mother Clara
     
     Linda Darnell and her mom

     Ginger Rogers and her mother Lela

    Bette Davis and her mom

    Paulette Goddard and her mom

     Carole Lombard and her mom

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  • 05/23/13--20:37: Mary Pickford

  • "I never liked one of my pictures in its entirety." ~ Mary

    Mary Pickford was born Gladys Louise Smith on April 8, 1892, in Toronto, Canada. After her father's death Mary, her brother Jack, and sister Lottie began working on the stage to support the family. D.W. Griffith discovered her and soon she was appearing in silent films. At just five feet tall with long curls she was often cast as a child. She married Owen Moore, an actor, in 1911 but they separated shorty after. Mary starred in a string of hit movies including Stella Maris, Pollyanna, and My Best Girl. She became the highest paid actress in Hollywood and was nicknamed "America's Sweetheart". Mary fell in love with dashing actor Douglas Fairbanks and they were married in 1920. The couple lived in a lavish Beverly Hills mansion called "Pickfair". Mary joined Douglas, Charlie Chaplin, and D.W. Griffith to form United Artists Studios. She was also a founding member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.




     In 1929 she starred in Coquette, her first sound film, and won the Academy Award for Best Actress. Tired of making movies she decided to retire from acting. Her sixteen year marriage to Douglas ended in 1936 and a year later she married actor Charles "Buddy" Rogers (who was rumored to be gay). Mary was unable to have children due to a botched abortion so she and Charles adopted a son and a daughter. She was offered the role of Norma Desmond in the 1950 drama Sunset Boulevard but turned it down. Mary devoted most of her time to charity work and published her autobiography, Sunshine And Shadow. As she grew older she developed a drinking problem and became a recluse. She was presented with an honorary Oscar at the 1976 Academy Awards. Mary died on May 29, 1979 from a cerebral hemorrhage. She was cremated and her ashes are buried at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, California.

    ~ Original biography by Elizabeth Ann 2013

     


    With Eleanor Roosevelt


    A signed letter (from my collection)

    Mary's trinket box (from my collection)

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  • 05/24/13--00:32: Lana Turner

  • "I would rather lose a good earring than be caughtwithout make-up." ~ Lana

    Lana Turner  was born Julia Jean Turner on February 8, 1921, in Wallace, Idaho. When she was a child her family moved to California a
    nd her father was murdered. Her mother struggled to support them and Lana spent some time in foster homes. When she was fifteen an agent approached her and asked if she wanted to become an actress. The story that Lana was discovered at Schwabb's drugstore would become a legend but she was actually at The Top Hat cafe. In 1937 she made her film debut in They Won't Forget and the following year she was offered a contract with MGM. She married bandleader Artie Shaw in February 1940 but she left him five months later. Shortly after she discovered that she was pregnant and had an abortion.
    Lana's hair was dyed blonde and she was dubbed "The Sweater Girl". She costarred with Judy Garland in Ziegfeld Girl and with Clark Gable in Honky Tonk. In 1942 she married restaurant owner Stephen Crane. The marriage ended soon after their daughter, Cheryl, was born. Lana's many boyfriends included Turhan Bey, Fernando Lamas, John Hodiak, and Robert Taylor. She fell madly in love with Tyrone Power but he broke her heart by marrying another woman. In 1946 she played a seductive wife in The Postman Always Rings Twice. The movie was a huge hit and turned her into a superstar.

    With Louella Parsons


    Lana married millionaire Henry "Bob" Topping in 1948. She got pregnant but the baby was stillborn. After her marriage to Bob ended she tried to kill herself by slashing her wrists. She married actor Lex Barker but left him when she discovered he was molesting Cheryl.  Lana received an Oscar nomination for her performance in the 1957 drama Peyton Place. In 1958 she was involved in one of Hollywood's biggest scandals . Her 14 year old daughter Cheryl stabbed her boyfriend, gangster Johnny Stompanato. Lana testified on Cheryl's behalf and it was ruled a justifiable homicide. Many believe that it was actually Lana who killed Johnny. In 1960 she married real estate mogul Fred May. They divorced and she married actor Robert Eaton in 1965. That marriage lasted four years. Her seventh marriage, to hypnotist Robert Dante, also ended in divorce. During the 1980s she joined the cast of the television show Falcon Crest and published her autobiography "Lana: The Lady, The Legend, The Truth. In her later years she had a drinking problem and became more reclusive. She claimed she was celibate for the last twenty years of her life. Lana died on June 29, 1995, from throat cancer. She was cremated and her ashes were given to her daughter.

    ~ Original biography by Elizabeth Ann 2013



     

    An autographed photo (from my collection)
     
     Lana's lipstick holder (from my collection)

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  • 05/26/13--17:10: Lucille Ball

  • "I'm not funny, what I am is brave." - Lucille

    Lucille Desiree Ball was born on August 3, 1911, in Jamestown, New York. Her father died when she was three years old. Lucille moved to New York City and began her career as a model. For a short time she used the stage name Diane Belmont. Her big break came when producer Sam Goldwyn chose her to be one of his "Goldwyn Girls". Lucille started getting small roles in movies like Stage Door and Room Service. While making the comedy Too Many Girls she met bandleader Desi Arnaz and they were married in 1940. To get more attention in Hollywood Lucille dyed her brown hair red. In 1943 she signed a contract with MGM where she was nicknamed "Techinicolor Tessie". She worked with Bob Hope in Fancy Pants and with Van Johnson in Easy To Wed but she was unhappy with the roles she was given.


     
    Lucille suffered several miscarriage before becoming a mother at age thirty-nine. In 1951 she teamed up with Desi to star in and produce the television series I Love Lucy. The show was a big success and they became the most popular couple on television. Even the birth of their son in 1953 became national news. Unfortunately Desi's drinking and affairs caused problems in their marriage. Lucille divorced him and married comedian Gary Morton in 1961. She would star in two more long-running television series making her a comedy legend . Her final public appearance would be at the 1989 Academy Awards. She died on April 26, 1989 from an aortic aneurysm. Lucille was cremated and her ashes were buried in Los Angeles but in 2002 her family moved them to Lake View Cemetery in Jamestown, New York.

    ~ Original biography by Elizabeth Ann 2013
     




    A signed letter (from my collection)

    Lucille's statue (from my collection)

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  • 05/26/13--23:01: Jean Harlow

  • “Underwear makes me uncomfortable and besides my parts have to breathe.” ~ Jean Harlow

    Jean Harlow was born Harlean Harlow Carpenter on March 3, 1911, in Kansas City, Missouri. When she was a child her parents divorced and her mother took her to California. At the age of sixteen Jean married Charles McGrew, a young millionaire, but the marriage only lasted two years. Jean's mother, a failed actress, encouraged her to go into show business. She appeared as an extra in movies like Double Whoopee and The Love Parade. Her big break came in 1930 when Howard Hughes cast her in Hell's Angels. Overnight Jean became one of Hollywood's most sought after actresses and women all over the country began to copy her platinum blonde hairstyle. In July 1932 Jean married MGM executive Paul Bern. Two months after their wedding Paul committed suicide by shooting himself. There were rumors that Paul had been impotent but Jean always claimed they had a happy marriage. Although she was devastated by her husband's death she immediately returned to work.



    Her success continued with starring roles in Dinner At Eight, Bombshell, and Red-Headed Woman. She shocked people by not wearing underwear and putting ice on her breasts before shooting a scene. Despite Jean's sexy image she continued to live with her mother and everyone called her "The Baby". In 1933 she married Harold Rosson, a cameraman. They divorced in 1934 and she began dating actor William Powell, ex-husband of Carole Lombard. Jean became pregnant but she had an abortion because William would not marry her. In the spring of 1937 she was working on the film Saratoga when she collapsed on the set. Although her mother claimed to be a Christian Scientist Jean was given the best medical treatment available. She died on June 7, 1937 from uremic poisoning. Jean was just twenty-six years old. She is buried at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, California. William paid for her crypt which is inscribed "Our Baby".

    ~ Original biography by Elizabeth Ann 2013






    A signed letter (from my collection)

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  • 05/30/13--20:57: Rita Hayworth

  • "All I wanted was just what everybody else wants, you know, to be loved." ~ Rita

    Rita Hayworth was born Margarita Carmen Cansino on October 17, 1918, in Brooklyn, New York. Her father was a dance instructor and Rita began performing with him when she was a teenager. She later confided to friends that her father had sexually molested her. In 1935 she made her film debut in the drama Dante's Inferno. When she was eighteen she married her older manager Edward Judson. He spent her money and encouraged her to sleep with powerful men in Hollywood. To help her career Rita dyed her dark hair red and had her hairline raised with electrolysis. She was offered a contract with Columbia pictures where she worked with Tyrone Power in Blood And Sand and with Fred Astaire in You Were Never Lovelier. Fred said that she was his favorite dancing partner. She divorced her husband and became engaged to Victor Mature. In 1943 she married Orson Welles and had a daughter, Rebecca. Rita became a popular World War 2 pin up and was nicknamed "The Love Goddess". Her biggest success came when she played a seductive femme-fatale in Gilda. Orson directed her in the 1948 film-noir The Lady from Shanghai.


     
    As a publicity stunt he made Rita cut her long hair and dye it blonde. After their marriage ended she began dating billionaire Howard Hughes. She got pregnant and had an abortion when he would not marry her. Rita quit making movies in 1949 and became a real life princess when she married Prince Aly Khan. They had a daughter, Yasmin, but the marriage only lasted three years. She returned to Hollywood appearing in movies like Affair In Trinidad and Pal Joey. In 1953 she married singer Dick Haymes but she left him when he became abusive. She formed a production company with her fifth husband James Hill but this marriage didn't last either. Rita had brief romances with actors Gary Merrill and Frank Langella. She had developed a serious drinking problem and often had trouble remembering her lines. In the early 1970s she was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease and had to retire from making movies. Rita was cared for by her daughter, Princess Yasmin, until her death on May 14, 1987. She is buried at Holy Cross Cemetery in Culver City, California. Princess Yasmin, is now the President of Alzheimer's Disease International.

    ~ Original biography by Elizabeth Ann 2013



    With her daughter Rebecca





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