TCM Archive Materials VIEW ALL ARCHIVES (20)
|Also Known As:||Died:||April 26, 1989|
|Born:||August 6, 1911||Cause of Death:||cardiac arrest after open heart surgery|
|Birth Place:||Jamestown, New York, USA||Profession:||Cast ...|
RATE AND COMMENT
Raised in Celoron, NY
Hired to dance in touring company of "Rio Rita" but fired because she couldn't handle choreography; later fired from chorus jobs in three shows (date approximate)
Changed professional name to Diane Belmont in the late 1920s
Feature film debut in "Bulldog Drummond"
Worked briefly as a Hattie Carnegie model before being paralyzed from waist down with rheumatoid arthritis; cured two years later (date approximate)
Selected as a Goldwyn Girl to appear in "Roman Scandals," starring Eddie Cantor
Joined Columbia appearing in bit parts, walk-ons and as a foil for the Three Stooges; first film billing in "Carnival"; fired by Columbia in an economy move
Signed by RKO
Breakthrough film, "Stage Door"
Acted in "Room Service," supporting the Marx Brothers
Played leading roles in a number of B films for RKO including "The Affairs of Annabel" (1938) and "Five Came Back" (1939)
First acted onscreen with Desi Arnaz in "Too Many Girls"
Starred opposite Henry Fonda in "The Big Street," playing the uncharacteristically dramatic role of a crippled nightclub singer
Signed by MGM to be groomed as musical star; learned comic use of props on backlot from Buster Keaton
Teamed with Red Skelton in the film version of the Broadway musical "Du Barry Was a Lady"
Worked freelance after MGM contract expired
Starred on radio in "My Favorite Husband" playing a scatter-brained wife opposite actor Richard Denning
First screen teaming with Bob Hope in "Sorrowful Jones"
Returned to Columbia with a three-picture deal
Again appeared opposite Hope in "Fancy Pants"
Formed Desilu Productions Arnaz
Starred in the TV sitcom, "I Love Lucy" (CBS); she and Arnaz had undertaken a stage tour in part to prove to CBS executives that audiences would accept them as a married couple and that they could work together as a team
Co-starred with Arnaz in "The Long, Long Trailer"
Reteamed with Arnaz for the feature "Forever Darling"
Desilu Productions bought old RKO Studio lot (date approximate)
Appeared in a series of one-hour specials under the umbrella title of "The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour/The Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Show"; episodes aired as part of "Desilu Playhouse"
Reteamed with Bob Hope for the feature "The Facts of Life"
Starred in Broadway musical "Wildcat"; run cut short reportedly due to Ball's health
As president of Desilu, became first woman ever to head a major Hollywood film production company
Bought out Desi Arnaz's share of Desilu
Starred in the popular TV sitcom "The Lucy Show" (CBS); show reteamed her with sidekick Vivian Vance and also featured Gale Gordon
Starred opposite Bob Hope in "Critics Choice"
Sold Desilu to Gulf + Western
Formed Lucille Ball Productions
Co-starred with Henry Fonda in the feature comedy about a blended family "Yours, Mine and Ours"
Starred on the popular CBS sitcom "Here's Lucy"; show featured her real-life children playing her screen character's kids
Made final feature film, the critically-derided adaptation of the Broadway musical "Mame"
Signed production deal with NBC, made one special and a pilot for a proposed series that was not picked up
TV-movie debut playing the dramatic role of a homeless woman in "The Stone Pillow" (CBS)
Starred on the short-lived ABC sitcom "Life with Lucy"
Last public appearance on the annual Academy Awards telecast
Portrayed by Frances Fisher in the CBS biopic "Lucy & Desi: Before the Laughter"
Daughter Lucie compiled personal home movies to create the award-winning special "Lucy and Desi: A Home Movie" for NBC
Long-lost autobiography <i>Love, Lucy</i> published
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