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America’s Sweetheart: Mary Pickford

18/11/2018

 

Gladys Louise Smith (April 8, 1892 – May 29, 1979), known professionally as Mary Pickford, was a prolific Canadian-American film actress and producer. She was a co-founder of both the Pickford-Fairbanks Studio (along with Douglas Fairbanks) and, later, the United Artists film studio (with Fairbanks, Charlie Chaplin and D.W. Griffith), and one of the original 36 founders of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences who present the yearly “Oscar” award ceremony.[3] Known in her prime as “America’s Sweetheart”[4][5][6] and the “girl with the curls”,[6] Pickford was one of the Canadian pioneers in early Hollywood and a significant figure in the development of film acting. Pickford was one of the earliest stars to be billed under her name (film performers until that time were usually unbilled), and was one of the most popular actresses of the 1910s and 1920s, earning the nickname “Queen of the Movies”. She was awarded the second ever Academy Award for Best Actress for her first sound-film role in Coquette (1929) and also received an honorary Academy Award in 1976. In consideration of her contributions to American cinema, the American Film Institute ranked Pickford as 24th in its 1999 list of greatest female stars of classic Hollywood Cinema.

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