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Marie Prevost (Marie Prevost)

Marie Prevost

Actress. Born Mary Bickford Dunn in Sarnia, Ontario, Canada, as a child she first moved to Denver, Colorado with her parents and then to Los Angeles, California. She worked as a stenographer, but after many comments about her good looks, she was hired by producer Mack Sennett, who gave her her stage name. She was just 18 at the time and working for one of the most famous companies in Hollywood. By the time she turned 21, she had played lead in a number of Keystone shorts, and was then hired by another studio. At Universal Studios, she almost immediately became a star of the silent screen. She represented an embodiment of the “Jazz Age” with her performances in motion pictures such as “Moonlight Follies” and “The Married Flapper”, both released in 1922. Her stay at Universal Studios was short, as she signed with Warner Brothers in 1922. While only with the studio for four years, she would make what is considered by many to be her best films, three of which were directed by Germany’s Ernest Lubitsch. Marie Prevost was the star of one of his breakthrough films “The Marriage Circle” (1924), a film where she gains acclaim for her portrayal of the flirtatious ‘Mizzi’, who attempts to seduce a happily married doctor from his wife. The latter 1920s saw Marie Prevost appear in a succession of successful motion pictures before she left Warner Brothers to sign with the Producers Distributing Corporation. There she made six films with silent film actor Harrison Ford. As the decade drew to a close, talking pictures were quickly oustripping silent movies in popularity. While many actors of the time did not translate their silent film success to spoken film success due to their voices or other reasons, Marie Prevost embraced the new medium. However, a series of unfortunate events would case the end of her career. The first of these happened when her mother was killed in a car accident, an event that left Marie Prevost inconsolable. When the Depression started, she was let go by the Producers, and she found herself without a contract or a studio. Her 1929 film “The Godless Girl”, had been a major disappointment, and her excessive drinking had caused her to put weight on, which, in the 1930s, her jeopardized her career. She still continued to make strong performances in films, most notably as her role as Joan Crawford’s prison friend in “Paid” (1930), but by 1932 things had changed. She made only four films that year and the last of of these had seen her slip to only supporting roles. In the next three years she would only appear in 9 films. By this time she was extremely heavy, and had began to diet, but eventually she stopped eating altogether. The end came in January 1937 when was found dead in her home in due to starvation. (bio by: Marta Monk)  Family links:  Spouse:  Kenneth Harlan (1895 – 1967)* *Calculated relationshipCause of death: Extreme malnutrition and alcoholism


  • November, 08, 1898
  • Canada


  • January, 01, 1937
  • USA

Cause of Death

  • Extreme malnutrition and alcoholism


  • Cremated

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