GLORIA STUART Biography - Actors and Actresses


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Name: Gloria Stuart                                                                     
Birth name: Gloria Frances Stewart                                                       
Born: 4 July 1910 Santa Monica, California, United States                               
Gloria Stuart (born July 4, 1910) is an Academy Award nominated American stage,         
television and film actress and artist.                                                 
Born Gloria Frances Stewart in Santa Monica, California, she changed the                 
spelling of her name when she commenced her acting career because "Stuart" fit           
better on a theater marquee.                                                             
After acting in college and in other amateur productions, Stuart was discovered         
at the Pasadena Playhouse and signed to a contract by Universal Studios in 1932.         
She was also selected as one of the thirteen WAMPAS Baby Stars of 1932.                 
As a glamorous blonde, she was quickly cast in a variety of films and became a           
favourite of director James Whale, appearing in his films The Old Dark House,           
The Invisible Man, The Kiss Before the Mirror and Secrets of the Blue Room.             
Stuart's career with Universal Studios failed to gain momentum, and she moved to         
20th Century Fox. By the end of the decade, she had starred in more than forty           
films, including Roman Scandals and Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm but had not               
become a major star. Some of her co-stars during the 1930s included Lionel               
Barrymore, Kay Francis, Claude Rains, Raymond Massey, Paul Lukas, John Boles,           
John Beal, and Shirley Temple.                                                           
In 1934, she married the screenwriter, Arthur Sheekman, writer of many of the           
Marx Brothers movies and Groucho's closest friend. In 1935, their daughter,             
Sylvia, was born, who later married Gene Thompson. They had four children, and           
named Groucho as godfather to Dinah Sapia, one of the children. In 1939, Stuart         
and Sheekman took a trip around the world, and, when they returned to California         
at the outbreak of the war, Stuart worked for the war effort, became a famous           
hostess at the legendary Garden of Allah, and made a few more films, but her             
career was fizzling. She turned her energies to a decorating shop, Décor, Ltd,         
where she sold the découpage furniture she created: lamps, frames, tables,             
globes. In 1954, living in Rapallo on the Italian Riviera, she took up oil               
painting. She had her first one woman show at the prestigious Hammer Galleries           
in New York, and she became well respected with her work being exhibited                 
throughout the United States and Europe.                                                 
As 100-year-old Rose in Titanic                                                         
After a thirty year break from acting, she appeared in the 1975 television movie         
The Legend of Lizzie Borden and over the next few years appeared regularly on           
television. She made her first cinema appearance in almost forty years when she         
appeared in My Favourite Year in 1982—one of her favorite scenes in all her           
movies, dancing with Peter O'Toole—but she had no lines. She also married twice-       
when her second husband died in 1978.                                                   
In 1984, at the age of 74, Stuart branched yet another career off her artwork.           
Her close friend, the California printer Ward Ritchie, taught her to print on           
his venerable hand press. She became a fine printer, founding a private press           
under the name "Imprenta Glorias". Since then, she has created a substantial             
number of artists books that are in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum,         
the Library of Congress, The J. Paul Getty Museum, the Morgan Library, the               
Victoria and Albert Museum, and la Bibliothèque nationale de France. In her 97th       
year, she is still at work every day in her studio. She has bequeathed her press         
and collection of rare metal type to Mills College.                                     
In old age, Stuart achieved a level of celebrity she had never experienced               
during her years as a Hollywood contract player, when cast in Titanic. As the           
100-year-old Rose Dawson Calvert, she received her first Oscar nomination for           
Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role for the 70th Academy Awards         
as well as a Golden Globe nomination and a Screen Actors Guild Award win for             
Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role.                             
At age 87, this made Stuart the oldest nominee ever for a competitive acting             
Oscar, a record she still holds. Although the Oscar and the Golden Globe were           
won by Kim Basinger, Stuart tied with Basinger for the SAG Award.                       
Stuart found herself relatively in demand after this and was constantly employed,       
as much as her age and health permitted, with her most recent roles being in a           
Murder, She Wrote TV movie in 2001, and Wim Wenders' Land of Plenty.                     
Stuart was awarded her Hollywood star on the Walk of Fame on her great-grandson,         
Dylan Sapia's birthday. The family was there for the unveiling. She remains             
close friends with Hollywood legend Olivia de Havilland, with the two having             
been friends for decades. Of the fifteen girls selected as "WAMPAS Baby Stars"           
in 1932, only Stuart, Mary Carlisle, and Dorothy Layton are still living today.