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Welcome to Epitaph for D’s Art Takes. Here we present the creative legacies of influential people, who are no longer among us. Today we invite you to take a look at the life of the American actress, Joan Crawford.

Joan Crawford was born Lucille Fay LeSueur in Texas. The year of her birth remains unconfirmed as there was no birth certificate. However, many believe she was born in 1905. During her acting career, she was also sometimes known as Billie Cassin.

Life & Career

Crawford enjoyed performing and dancing from a young age. In the early 20s, she went to New York and Chicago to perform. She was spotted by Harry Rapf, an MGM producer, at one of her shows and he offered her a contract. She adopted the name Crawford after it became the winning entry in a magazine contest to change her name.

A versatile performer, Crawford brought to life a diverse range of roles on the big screen. She was seen in movies that showcased her beauty, acting skills and talents as a dancer. Crawford was seen in Our Dancing Daughters (1928), Hollywood Revue (1929) and Grand Hotel (1932). Dancing Lady (1933), Possessed (1931) and Strange Cargo (1940) were also successful films.

By the 30s, Crawford had become one of the highest earning actresses in Hollywood. In the 40, she left MGM to sign with Warner Brothers. Her role in Mildred Pierce (1945) won her the Academy Award for Best Actress. She also won awards for Possessed (1947) and Fear (1952).

Crawford died in 1977.

I never go outside unless I look like Joan Crawford the movie star. If you want to see the girl next door, go next door.

– Joan Crawford.

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