Born Lucille Fay LeSueur in San Antonio, Texas, but christened Joan Crawford by Hollywood, she exemplified the 1920s carefree "flapper" era to a 'T'. Her beauty and vivacity catapulted her to stardom in the late 1920s in the hugely popular silent classic "Our Dancing Daughters". Ever since that point, the resilient actress with the ever expressive eyes, the famous overpainted lips and the will of steel created for herself one of the most legendary and enduring Hollywood personae of all time. Receiving 3 best actress oscar nominations throughout her long career and winning once for the 1945 classic noir "Mildred Pierce", joan seemed to personify the ideal american woman of every decade, from the uprorious 1920s right up until her death as a semireclusive corporate widow on may 10th, 1977. Her 5th and last marriage was to Pepsi Cola chairman Alfred Steele, who died in 1959. She was described by some as "the face" owing to her classically beautiful features and even the great Hollywood studio photographer George Hurrell dubbed her "camera proof" as she photographed perfectly from every angle. She also won a British BAFTA award for the 1957 movie "The Story of Esther Costelllo." She's best remembered for classic roles in "Our Dancing Daughters," "Grand Hotel," "The Women," "Mildred Pierce," "Humoresque," "Possessed," "Harriet Craig," "Sudden Fear" and the 1962 horror classic "What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?" Her film career spanned nearly 50 years.
A look at the forces that shaped Pre-Code Hollywood and brought about the strict enforcement of t... Read more