CAROLE LOMBARD - My Favorite Actress

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Happy Birthday Andrea Leeds (1914 - 1984)

Happy Birthday to Andrea Leeds, a talented actress who had a short lived career. Andrea only made about 20 films during a four year span from 1936 to 1940. But one of her best and biggest roles was in the female driven cast film, Stage Door, as Kay Hamilton, the shy and sensitive young woman who has a very hard time landing a role on Broadway. Other films included Come and Get It (1936) with Joel McCrea and Frances Farmer; They Shall Have Music (1939) again with Joel McCrea but this time as the female lead; and The Real Glory (1939) with Gary Cooper.
Andrea Leeds in Stage Door

But just as her career was taking off, personal tragedy struck when her fiance Jack Dunn, who was Sonia Henie's ice skating partner at the time, died suddenly of a rare illness in July 1938 and her interest in acting waned. She would marry a year later and would settled down to live a norma family life.

This photo is from Film Noir Photos by Mr. Mark A. Clark
film noir photos
Andrea was blessed with 2 children from her marriage to Robert Howard as they remained married until his death in 1962. Andrea died in 1984 from cancer.

She may not have been a big star but she did have a noticeable impact in Hollywood and on me. Stage Door is one of my favorite films and her character Kay plays a pivotal part in this film. I know most people will talk about Kate, Ginger, Lucille, Eve, Ann and the others of which I am guilty of too, but more praise needs to be given to Andrea as well. Especially today. So Happy Birthday Andrea! You were one of Hollywood's brightest stars in the time you were a part of it.
Andrea Leeds in Stage Door
As Kay in Stage Door...heartbreaking character
A pensive Andrea..

Amid all the women of Stage Door...


Laura said...

I've always thought Andrea Leeds looked amazingly like Olivia deHavilland in STAGE DOOR -- they look more alike than deHavilland and Joan Fontaine. :)

Best wishes,

Renata said...

wow, 3 hours ago I didn't know who she was, but 3 hours ago I saw Stage Door for the first time, read about her and now you post this? haha funny coincidences :)


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