Marie Wilson

"Show business has been very good to me and I'm not complaining, but some day I just wish 
someone would offer me a different kind of role." ~ Marie

Marie Wilson was born Katherine Elisabeth White on August 19, 1916, in Anaheim, California. Her parents divorced and her father died when she was five years old. After graduating from highschool she worked as a sales girl in a department store. She made her film debut as an extra in the 1934 film Babes In Toyland . Marie started dating director Nick Grinde who helped her get a contract at Warner Brothers. She appeared in the hit films Satan Met A Lady, Fools For Scandal, and The Cowboy Quarterback. With her baby doll voice and voluptuous figure Marie found herself typecast as a dumb blonde. In 1942 she married actor Allan Nixon. They had a turbulent marriage and Allan was arrested several times for drunk and disorderly conduct. Marie costarred with James Cagney in Boy Meets Girl and with Groucho Marx in A Girl In Every Port.

She also spent seven years working with Ken Murray in his Black Out stage show. The highlight of the show was Marie's mock striptease number. Her greatest success came in 1949 when she starred in the radio program My Friend Irma. The show became so popular that it was adapted into a movie and a television show. Marie divorced Allan and married producer Robert Fallon in 1951. The couple adopted a son named Gregson. When Marilyn Monroe became a star some critics said she stole her image from Marie. During the 1950s she toured the country with her nightclub act and released an album. She also appeared on numerous television shows. Sadly Marie was diagnosed with cancer in 1967. She passed away on November 23, 1972 at the age of fifty-six. Marie is buried at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Hollywood, California. She has been awarded three stars on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame for her work in movies, television, and radio.

~ Original biography by Elizabeth Ann 2015

Jean Harlow's Tragic Death

"I've found everything I've never found before. And when it ends - as it probably must - well even then 
I won't feel that life has cheated me too much." ~ Jean Harlow in 1937

Jean Harlow's life came to a tragic end on June 7, 1937. The blonde superstar was just twenty-six years old. In her short life Jean had starred in more than forty films, had three husbands, and created hundreds of headlines. At the time of her death she was in an on-again off-again romance with actor William Powell. After she died wild rumors started spreading about what had really happened. Some people claimed Jean's hair bleach had killed her or that she died from a botched abortion. The truth was much more simple but just as tragic. When Jean was just fifteen years old she came down with Scarlett fever. She never fully recovered and the illness slowly weakened her over the next decade. In March 1937 Jean began work on the film Saratoga with he good friend Clark Gable.

Jean on May 29, 1937

She complained that she wasn't feeling and missed several days of work to have her wisdom teeth removed. On May 29 William Powell took her home after she almost fainted on the set. Although her mother claimed to be a Christian Scientist several doctors were called to examine Jean. At first they thought she had gallbladder infection but it was soon clear that her kidneys were failing. She became very bloated and her breath smelled like urine. Jean was taken to Good Samaritan hospital on June 6 where she slipped into a coma. She died the next morning at 11:37AM. The official cause of her death was kidney failure and a cerebral edema. William Powell paid $25,000 for a large crypt at Forest Lawn Memorial Park. The inscription on her graves reads simply "Our Baby".

Jean's crypt in the Great Mausoleum

William Powell and his mother at Jean's funeral

Jean's funeral at Forest Lawn

Jean, Lionel Barrymore, and Clark Gable on the set of Saratoga

Marvel Rea

Marvel Rea was born Marvel Luciel Rea on November 9, 1901, in Ainsworth, Nebraska. When she was a child her family lived in Seattle and eventually moved in California. She grew into a beautiful teenager with a petite figure and champagne blonde hair. Marvel was very athletic and loved to swim and surf. In 1918 she married a banker named Henry Page Wells. Unfortunately he was a drug addict and she divorced him less than a year later. Movie producer Mack Sennett hired Marvel to model as one of his bathing beauties. She became known as "the girl with the most beautiful figure on the Motion Picture stage". Before long she was given small roles in movies like Her Screen Idol and The Summer Girls.

Although she would appear in more than thirty films Marvel never became a major star. She decided to stop acting in 1921. Her final role was in the short film For Land's Sake. Marvel married her second husband Edwin J. Wilkinson in 1936 but her happiness was short-lived. On September 2, 1936 she was kidnapped and assaulted by three men. She was choked, cut, and left semi-conscious in the street. The men were caught and Marvel had to testify at the headline-making trial. Sadly she never fully recovered from the attack. She committed suicide on June 17, 1937 by ingesting ant poison. Marvel was only thirty-five years old. She is buried at Pacific Crest Cemetery in Redondo Beach, California.

~ Original biography by Elizabeth Ann 2014

Marvel, Ford Sterling, and Alice Maison

Marvel is sitting on the right

Mary Thurman (Silent Actress)

"I shall always be grateful for the years I spent in comedy. I attained success and I made money 
but it wasn't the sort of work I liked." ~ Mary

Mary Thurman was born Mary Christiansen on April 27, 1895, in Richfield, Utah. She was one of seven children raised in the Mormon faith. Sadly her father passed away when she was nine. Mary attended the University of Utah and got a job as a teacher. In 1915 she took a trip to Hollywood. A talent scout saw her and she became one of the famous Mack Sennett bathing beauties. She also began appearing in Sennett's comedy shorts. Mary started out as an extra and quickly worked her way up to leading lady. Between 1916 and 1918 she made more than twenty films. Mary married her childhood sweetheart Victor E. Thurman but the couple divorced in 1919. Mary costarred with Rosco "Fatty" Arbuckle in Leap Year and with William Desmond in The Prince And Betty.

Although she had become a popular comedienne she dreamed of being a serious actress. She signed with producer Allan Dwan who cast her in the 1920 drama In The Heart Of A Fool. Her performance got rave reviews. Allan would direct Mary in several more films including The Sin of Martha Queed and A Broken Doll. Off screen Mary and Allan fell in love and were engaged for a short time. In the fall 1925 she began work on the movie Down Upon The Suwanee River. While filming in Florida she came down with a serious case of pneumonia. She struggled with the illness for months and passed away on December 22, 1925. Mary was only thirty years old. Her mother and her best friend, actress Juanita Hansen, were by her side when she died. Mary was buried in Richfield City Cemetery in her hometown of Richfield, Utah.

~ Original biography by Elizabeth Ann 2015