Archive for June, 2012
Viola Dana was an American film actress who was successful during the era of silent movies.
Viola Dana was born Virginia Flugrath on June 26, 1897 in Brooklyn, New York. Dana became a child star, appearing on the stage at the age of three. She read Shakespeare and particularly identified with the teenage Juliet and enjoyed a long run at the Hudson Theater in New York City. At the age of sixteen Dana was a particular favorite of audiences with her performance in David Belasco’s “Poor Little Rich Girl”. She went into vaudeville with Dustin Farnum in “The Little Rebel” and played a bit part in “The Model” by Augustus Thomas. Dana made her film debut in 1914 in “Molly the Drummer Boy” (1914). The following year she received top billing playing Gladiola Bain in “Gladiola” (1915). Dana secured another lead in “The Innocence of Ruth” (1916) and then starred in “The Girl Without a Soul” and “Blue Jeans” (both in 1917) for Metro Pictures Corporation. She continued to act throughout the 1920s with her most notable role coming in 1926 as Katie O’Doone in “Bred in Old Kentucky”. In the late 1920’s Dana’s popularity began to wane and her final silver screen role was in “One Splendid Hour” (1929) after which Dana retired from films.
In 1915 Viola Dana married director John H. Collins. They remained married until his death during the influenza epidemic of 1918. In 1920 Dana had a romantic relationship with daredevil Hollywood pilot Ormer Locklear. Locklear was killed when his plane crashed during a nighttime film stunt that went wrong on August 2, 1920. Dana was present at the time of the incident and would not fly again herself for twenty-five years. Dana was later married to Yale football star and actor Maurice “Lefty” Flynn from 1925 to 1929 and to golfer Jimmy Thomson from 1930 to 1945. Both marriages ended in divorce.
Viola Dana died from heart failure at the age of 90 on July 3, 1987 in Woodland Hills, California. She is interred at Hollywood Forever Cemetery under her original name of Virginia Flugrath.
For her contribution to the motion picture industry, Viola Dana has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. It is located at 6541 Hollywood Boulevard.
Gene Eliza Tierney (November 19, 1920 – November 6, 1991) was an American film and stage actress. Acclaimed as one of the great beauties of her day, she is best remembered for her performance in the title role of “Laura” (1944) and her Academy Award-nominated performance for Best Actress in “Leave Her to Heaven” (1945).
“I’ve been told I have an Irish temper, I know I have Scottish thrift, and, like the English, I love a good show.” ~ Jeanette MacDonald
“I have no inhibitions about smoking or drinking, but I think too much of my voice to place it in jeopardy. I have spent many good years in training and cultivating it, and I would be foolish to do anything which might impair or ruin it.” ~ Jeanette MacDonald
“I’m sure that people must say about me, on the screen, `Good gracious, is Jeanette MacDonald going to take off her clothes, again?” ~ Jeanette MacDonald
“I can’t believe how blessed I am! I’m married to the most wonderful man, Gene Raymond, whom I’m deeply in love with, and, my career is right where I want it to be. I can live like this forever!” ~ Jeanette MacDonald in 1943
“I must have had rocks in my head.” ~ Jeanette MacDonald when asked by friend Samuel Griffin in the 1950s why she married Gene Raymond instead of Nelson Eddy
“The one thing I missed was never having children. It just wasn’t in the cards, I guess.” ~ Jeanette MacDonald
“Casablanca” is a 1942 American romantic drama film directed by Michael Curtiz, starring Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman and Paul Henreid, and featuring Claude Rains, Conrad Veidt, Sydney Greenstreet, Peter Lorre and Dooley Wilson. Set during World War II, it focuses on a man torn between, in the words of one character, love and virtue. He must choose between his love for a woman and helping her and her Czech Resistance leader husband escape from the Vichy-controlled Moroccan city of Casablanca to continue his fight against the Nazis. “Casablanca” won three Academy Awards, including Best Picture. Its characters, dialogue, and music have become iconic, and the film has grown in popularity to the point that it now consistently ranks near the top of lists of the greatest films of all time.
Dorothy Hackett McGuire was born June 14, 1916 in Omaha, Nebraska. McQuire began her acting career on the stage at the Omaha Community Playhouse. Eventually reaching Broadway, she first appeared as an understudy to Martha Scott in “Our Town”, and subsequently starred in the domestic comedy, “Claudia”. On the strength of her performance on Broadway McQuire was brought to Hollywood by producer David O. Selznick to make a movie adaptation of the Broadway hit “Claudia” (1943). Her screen performance was popular with both the public and critics alike and was the catalyst for not only a sequel, “Claudia and David” (1946), but also launched McQuire into a long successful Hollywood career. She was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress in 1947 for “Gentleman’s Agreement”. Other notable films include “The Enchanted Cottage” (1945), “A Tree Grows in Brooklyn” (1945), “Mister 88” (1950), “Three Coins in the Fountain” (1954), “Friendly Persuasion” (1956), “Old Yeller” (1957), “A Summer Place” (1959), “Swiss Family Robinson” (1960), “The Greatest Story Ever Told” (1965), and “The Dark at the Top of the Stairs” (1960). Her last feature film was the British-made “Flight of the Doves” (1971). McQuire also found rewarding work on TV and received an Emmy nomination for the well-received mini-series “Rich Man, Poor Man” (1976). She also played Marmee in a TV revisitation of “Little Women: Pilot” (1978). Her last appearance was in the sentimental tearjerker “The Last Best Year” (1990) co-starring Bernadette Peters and Mary Tyler Moore.
Dorothy McQuire married Life magazine photographer John Swope (1908–1979) in 1943. McGuire and Swope were married for more than 35 years, until his death in 1979. Together they he had a son, photographer Mark Swope, and a daughter Topo Swope, who also became an actress.
Dorothy McGuire died September 13, 2001 in Santa Monica, California of cardiac arrest following a brief illness at the age of 85.
For her contribution to the motion picture industry, Dorothy McGuire has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6933 Hollywood Blvd.