Depression-era movie star Deanna Durbin dies at 91
By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
5/1/2013 (4 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
One of the silver screen's leading lights during the Depression and World War II, actress and singer Deanna Durbin retired in 1948 to live with her third husband in France. A child star, Durbin said her biggest fans were "parents, many of whom could not cope with their own youngsters. They sort of adopted me as their 'perfect' daughter." Durbin has passed away at the age of 91.
Deanna Durbin was the second-highest paid woman in America in 1946, just $5,000 behind Bette Davis. Anne Frank kept Durbin's picture in the attic where she and her family hid from the Nazis; the photo still hangs today.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The Deanna Durbin Society's newsletter announced her death, quoting her son Peter H. David that she died "a few days ago." He thanked fans for respecting her privacy.
Born in Winnipeg, Manitoba in 1921, Durbin signed to MGM at 13. She made her first film alongside Judy Garland in the 1936 short "Every Sunday." MGM head Louis B. Mayer reportedly instructed his employees to "drop the fat one." Letting Durbin go, Mayer had meant Garland.
Signing to Universal and the subsequent success of her next films, including "Three Smart Girls" and its two sequels kept the studio afloat. A 1936 nationwide search for the actor who would give Durbin her first screen kiss, actor Robert Stack was chosen for "First Love."
Durbin was the second-highest paid woman in America in 1946, just $5,000 behind Bette Davis. Anne Frank kept Durbin's picture in the attic where she and her family hid from the Nazis; the photo still hangs today.
Durbin's career had its setbacks. When she auditioned for the lead role in Disney's "Snow White," Walt Disney reportedly considered the then 15-year-old as sounding mature for the part. She recorded dozens of songs, including recreations of her movie tunes that were released commercially, and standards including "Love's Old Sweet Song" and "God Bless America."
Typecast as a sweet young thing, Durbin had a hard time finding acceptance as she grew older and took on adult roles. Audiences and critics were aghast when she took the role of a prostitute in "Christmas Holiday" in 1944.
She divorced her husband of two years, director Vaughn Paul, in 1943. She was married twice more, to producer Felix Jackson and Charles David, the director of "Lady on a Train." Her union with David lasted from 1950 until 1999, when he died.
Durbin made her last film in 1948, "For the Love of Mary" and retired to a French farmhouse with David.
Shunning the spotlight, she gave very few interviews. In a rare conversation, she said "I hated being in a goldfish bowl."
"I was a typical 13-year-old American girl. The character I was forced into had little or nothing in common with myself -- or with other youth of my generation, for that matter. I could never believe that my contemporaries were my fans," a letter she sent reporters in 1958 read in part.
"I was never happy making pictures. I've gained weight. I do my own shopping, bring up my two children and sing an hour every day."
Copyright 2017 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK
Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for OCTOBER 2017
Workers and the Unemployed. That all workers may receive respect and protection of their rights, and that the unemployed may receive the opportunity to contribute to the common good.
What children read, what they see on the screen, can inspire them toward greater faithfulness. Conversely, Father Robert warns, it can lead ... continue reading
Ever felt like there is nothing worthwhile to watch? You might want to check out the Vatican's list of 'Some Important Films'.In 1995, Pope ... continue reading
Desperate to remain relevant and make money, the movie industry is preparing to release a smutty film about lesbian nuns with mystical ... continue reading
This summer some pretty amazing movies are going to hit theaters, so which ones are YOU excited about? LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - ... continue reading
From the Norbertines of St. Michael's Abbey and Chuck Kinnane, director of The Human Experience, Child 31, and Generation Hope, comes a new ... continue reading
by Catholic Online
- NO, you may NOT venerate the apparitions in Medjugorje
- Pope Francis: Our Lady reveals everyone has a place in the Church
- Could it be an alien spacecraft? Scientists listening today for ...
- Bioscience firms admit trafficking illegal fetal body parts - How ...
- Daily Reading for Friday, December 15th, 2017 HD Video
- Daily Readings for Thursday, December 14, 2017
- St. John of the Cross: Saint of the Day for Thursday, December 14, 2017
- Is Facebook ripping apart human civilization? HD
- Daily Reading for Thursday, December 14th, 2017 HD
- Daily Reading for Wednesday, December 13th, 2017 HD
- Attempted terror attack fails in Manhattan as pipe bomb explodes early HD
Learn about Catholic world
Inform - Inspire - Ignite
Catholic Online Saints
Your saints explained
Catholic Online Prayers
Prayers for every need
Catholic Online Bible
Complete bible online
Catholic Online News
Your news Catholic eye
Today's bible reading
Products and services we offer
Catholic Online Shopping
Catholic medals, gifts & books
The California Network
Inspiring streaming service
Learn the Catholic way