Mary Pickford’s actual name is Gladys Marie Smith. She changed it to her stage name of Mary Pickford. Mary is from Marie, her middle name, and Pickford was her mother’s maiden name. She replaced her name to match her short and petite size of 5’0. She was born April 8th, 1892 and died May 29th, 1979 when she was 87 years old. She died due to difficulties with a cerebral hemorrhage. She was married three times. She divorced Owen Moore after nine years of marriage and Douglas Fairbanks after sixteen years of marriage. Charles ‘Buddy’ Rogers was her final husband who she was married to for 42 years and had two children, Ronald and Roxanne. Mary took interest in theater at age 7. In her childhood, she loved to ride her bike. She also was said to have eaten rose petals in hopes that the beauty, color, and sent would ‘get inside her.’ Her first picture film was in 1910. In October of 1911, a court voided a contract with IMP company because she was a minor when their contract was signed. She then signed with Majestic Company before starting her own organization.
Mary Pickford is accredited to have almost 250 films. She is best known for the film Coquette. Made in 1929, It was romantic drama with Mary as the star. She is also known for The Hoodlum, created in 1919, The Poor Little Rich Girl and the Little American in 1917. She often played glamorous roles of a rich girl that brought comedy or the sweetheart love interest in romances.
Mary won an Academy Award in 1930 for Best Actress in a Leading Role. It was awarded for her performance in Coquette released in 1929. She was the second actress ever to receive an academy award. She was one of the 36 patrons of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Mary Pickford was the first actress to receive a part of the movie’s success in earrings beyond salary. She was the first artist to have her name in marquee lights. Pickford was the actress featured in the first close up shot in 1912. Mary was one the first actors to place her handprints at the Grauman’s Chinese Theatre in 1927. In 1960, Mary received a star on the walk of fame commemorating her acting success throughout the years.
Mary Pickford was a “screen legend” because she is arguably one of the silent film era’s most prestigious stars. Mary Pickford lives on as an inspiration for actors. She was an independent and self-motivated woman. Mary was significantly ahead of her time due to the grace and determination. She was the founder and President of the Pickford company that produced films starring herself and other United Artists. The organization was formed after studio consolidations that threatened or limited their artistic and commercial control over their productions. Although in this new producer position, she emphasized the artistic process over profits and was said to rarely be in an office setting.