Saturday, February 25, 2017

10 Things You May Not Know About Barbara Stanwyck

Barbara Stanwyck (1907 – 1990) was one of the greatest movie stars from Hollywood’s Golden Age. She starred in many classic films, including the Pre-Code Baby Face (1933), Stella Dallas (1937), The Lady Eve (1941), and Double Indemnity (1944) to name a few. She became a major TV star portraying Victoria Barkley on the hit series The Big Valley (1965 – 1969). Find out how much you know or don’t know about this legendary actress.

1. Stanwyck (born Ruby Stevens) was orphaned at the age of four. She and her older brother Byron spent their childhood in and out of foster homes.

2. She was a dancer in the Ziegfeld Follies during the 1922 and 1923 seasons.

3. Her big break came on Broadway playing a chorus girl in The Noose (1926); this is when she became Barbara Stanwyck.

4. The next year, Stanwyck was the toast of Broadway for her starring role in Burlesque (1927).

5. Oscar Levant introduced Stanwyck to her first husband, Frank Fay.

Stanwyck, director Mitchell Leisen, and Fred MacMurray on the set of  Remember the Night (1940)

6. As Stanwyck’s star rose, Fay’s fell. Many believe their disintegrating marriage was the inspiration for the original film version of A Star Is Born (1937).

7. Zeppo Marx was Stanwyck’s manager and he along with Stanwyck and his first wife, Marion Benda, owned a thoroughbred horse farm called Marwyck.

8. In 1944 she was the highest paid woman in the United States.

9. She was nominated four times as Best Actress, but never won a competitive Oscar; she was awarded a special Academy Award in 1982.

10. Producer Earl Hamner Jr. originally wanted Stanwyck to play Angela Channing in the hit TV series Falcon Crest.

Looking for more information on this screen legend, check out A Life of Barbara Stanwyck: Steel True 1907- 1940 by Victoria Wilson.

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