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Clara Bow

Clara Bow


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Also Known As: Clara Gordon Bow Died: September 26, 1965
Born: July 29, 1905 Cause of Death: heart attack
Birth Place: Brooklyn, New York, USA Profession: Cast ... actor


Hollywood's original "It" Girl and the first true sex symbol of the silver screen, silent-era actress Clara Bow enjoyed unprecedented stardom, even as she endured an exhausting work schedule and escalating emotional problems. Emerging from the tenements of Brooklyn in the early 1920s, Bow was signed by independent movie producer B. P. Schulberg and placed in projects like "Black Oxen" (1923) and "Wine" (1924), films that established the free-spirited actress as Hollywood's "perfect flapper." Efforts like "The Plastic Age" (1925), "Mantrap" (1926), "Wings" (1927) and the career-defining "It" (1927) transformed Bow not only into the biggest movie star of her age, but a bona fide screen legend as well. Off the set, her freewheeling, non-conformist lifestyle - which included several affairs with various leading men and industry power players - brought Bow much unwanted scrutiny from the tabloid media. Even more problematic was her unstable mental health, long untreated and further exacerbated by the demands of near constant film work. Unlike many of her fellow silent film stars, the advent of the "talkie" failed to knock Bow off her throne as the reigning movie queen, and sound pictures like "The Wild Party" (1929) and "True to the Navy" (1930) continued to attract audiences in droves. When at last the pressures of stardom and her tenuous mental state led to a breakdown, Bow chose to leave film forever in 1933. Though nearly forgotten, Bow's legacy was kept alive through film restoration efforts and her influence clearly evident in the style choices of many top contemporary female entertainers decades after her departure from the screen.

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