Thursday, January 4, 2018

Mary Astor - 1930 portrait

This is Mary Astor in a portrait from Stars of the Photoplay, a book of photos of Hollywood stars published by Photoplay Magazine in 1930.  The brief biographical note mentions is she 5-foot, 5 inches tall, weighs 120 pounds, and became a WAMPUS star in 1926.  At the time of this photo, she had been recently widowed when her husband, director Kenneth Hawks "was killed in an airplane accident over the Pacific" while filming Such Men are Dangerous in January 1930.  His brother was director Howard Hawks.

By this time, Mary had been a silent film star for nearly a decade, would have a long career ahead in "the talkies."  Three more marriages awaited her, a scandal that nearly ended her career, and a couple of fascinating books she would write about the whole shebang.  We discussed Mary Astor in this post on her remarks about her career and Hollywood.  We covered her work here in Claudia and David (1946) and in This Happy Feeling (1958)

But this sepia-toned, come-hither shot featuring those lowered, large eyes under pencil-thin brows comes in the middle between her silent screen work and The Maltese Falcon (1941) and The Great Lie (1941), Dodsworth (1936) and all the greater films of her career, the films for which we remember her.  Here she is 24 years old.  She has already experienced so much.  So much is still ahead of her.


Caftan Woman said...

A fascinating woman, and her life offers a fascinating view of much of Hollywood history.

Jacqueline T. Lynch said...

Indeed she was, and she was a great chronicler of the industry.

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