The actress and producer is best known for playing Norma Desmond, in the 1950 film “Sunset Boulevard”
Gloria Swanson was born on this day in 1899
Gloria Swanson was born on March 27, 1899, in a small house in Chicago, Illinois. The actress and producer best knew for her role as Norma Desmond, in the critically acclaimed 1950 film “Sunset Boulevard”. After Mae West, Mary Pickford and Pola Negri all declined the role, Swanson starred in 1950’s “Sunset Boulevard”, portraying Norma Desmond, a faded silent movie star who falls in love with the younger screenwriter Joe Gillis, played by William Holden. Swanson was also a star in the silent film era as both an actress and a fashion icon, especially under the direction of Cecil B. DeMille. She starred in dozens of silent films and was nominated for the first Academy Award in the Best Actress category. She also produced her own films, including “Sadie Thompson” and “The Love of Sunya”. In 1929, Swanson transitioned to talkies with The “Trespasser”. Personal problems and changing tastes saw her popularity wane during the 1930s when she moved into the theater, and later television. In 1960, Gloria Swanson was honored with two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame: one for motion pictures at 6750 Hollywood Boulevard, and another for television at 6301 Hollywood Boulevard. Shortly after returning to New York from her home in Portugal, on April 4, 1983, Swanson died at New York Hospital from a heart ailment, aged 84. She was cremated and her ashes interred at the Episcopal Church of the Heavenly Rest on Fifth Avenue, in New York City, attended by only a small circle of family. Swanson still has a timeless appeal, iconic looks, her natural grace, and her personal flair. Like all great ladies of the silent screen, her face says it all without saying a single word.
Watch Gloria Swanson in the last scene from the 1950 film “Sunset Boulevard”
By Ken Warren, 2018
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