Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Myrna Loy

Myrna Loy was born Myrna Adele Williams on August 2, 1905 on a cattle ranch in Radersburg, Montana. Her name Myrna comes from a train station that her father traveled through in early 1905.

Her father was the youngest person ever elected to the Montana State legislature (elected at the age of 21). Later on her family moved to Helena where she spent her youth. At the age of 13, Myrna's father died of influenza and the rest of the family moved to Los Angeles. She was originally trained as a dancer and was educated in L.A. and the Westlake School for Girls where she caught the acting bug.

She was discovered by Natacha Rambova (Mrs. Rudolph Valentino) who happened to be in the audience one night who managed to pull some strings to get Myrna some parts in the motion picture industry. Her first film was a small part in the film What Price Beauty in 1925.

Unable to land a contract with MGM, she signed with Warner Brothers and appeared in small, bit roles,. It seemed that she would play one vamp after another. However, her big break came when she was able to finally sign with MGM where she got two big roles in the Prizefighter and The Lady (1933) and The Thin Man (1934) and a star was born.

Her trademark was her turned up nose.

In 1936, she was named Queen of the Movies and Clark Gable the king in a nationwide poll of movie goers and her profile was the most requested in the 1930s by women to their plastic surgeons.

Men-Must-Marry-Myrna Clubs were formed due to her portrayal as The Perfect Wife in The Best Years of Our Lives (1946). Myrna Loy always thought this was funny that she was labeled the perfect wife since she was married and divorced four times.

Although snubbed by the Academy Awards by never even being nominated for an academy award she did receive an Honorary Academy Award in 1991.

Her best known films are The Thin Man movies, The Best Years of Our Lives, Libeled Lady, Manhatten Melodrama, Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House, Too Hot to Handle, Test Pilot, The Great Ziegfeld, and Wife vs. Secretary.

Her final film was in 1981 a television movie called Summer Solstice.

By the time Myrna passed away, on December 14, 1993, at the age of 88, she had appeared in 129 motion pictures.

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