LORETTA YOUNG Biography - Actors and Actresses


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Name: Loretta Young                                                                     
Birth name: Gretchen Young                                                               
Born: 6 January 1913 Salt Lake City, Utah, U.S.                                         
Died: 12 August 2000 Los Angeles, California, U.S.                                       
Loretta Young (January 6, 1913 – August 12, 2000) was an Academy Award-winning         
American actress.                                                                       
She was born in Salt Lake City, Utah as Gretchen Young (she took the name               
Michaela at confirmation) she moved with her family to Hollywood when she was           
three years old. Loretta and her sisters Polly Ann Young and Elizabeth Jane             
Young (screen name Sally Blane) worked as child actresses, of whom Loretta was           
the most successful. Young's first role was at age 3 in the silent film The             
Primrose Ring. The movie's star Mae Murray so fell in love with little Gretchen         
that she wanted to adopt her. Although her mother declined, Gretchen was allowed         
to live with Murray for two years. Her half-sister Georgiana (daughter of her           
mother and stepfather George Belzer) eventually married actor Ricardo Montalban.         
During her high school years, she was educated at Ramona Convent Secondary               
She was billed as "Gretchen Young" in the 1917 film, Sirens of the Sea. It wasn't       
until 1928 that she was first billed as "Loretta Young", in The Whip Woman. That         
same year she co-starred with Lon Chaney in the MGM film Laugh, Clown, Laugh.The         
next year, she was anointed one of the WAMPAS Baby Stars.                               
In 1930, Young, then 17, eloped with 26-year-old actor Grant Withers and married         
him in Yuma, Arizona. The marriage was annulled the next year, just as their             
second movie together (ironically titled Too Young to Marry) was released.               
Young made as many as seven or eight movies a year and won an Oscar in 1947 for         
her performance in The Farmer's Daughter. The same year she co-starred with Cary         
Grant and David Niven in The Bishop's Wife, a perennial favorite that still airs         
on television during the Christmas season and was later remade as The Preacher's         
Wife with Whitney Houston. In 1949, Young received another Academy Award                 
nomination (for Come to the Stable) and in 1953 appeared in her last film, It           
Happens Every Thursday.                                                                 
Moving to television, she hosted and starred in the well-received half hour             
anthology series The Loretta Young Show. Her "sweeping" trademark appearance at         
the beginning of each show was to appear dramatically in various high fashion           
evening gowns. She returned at the program's conclusion to restate to the viewer         
the moral of the story just seen. (Young's introductions and conclusions to her         
television shows, which were widely satirized at the time, are not rerun on             
television because she had it legally stipulated that they not be; the ever             
image-conscious Young didn't want to be seen in "outdated" wardrobe and                 
hairstyles.) Her program ran in prime time on NBC for eight years, the longest-running   
prime time network program ever hosted by a woman up to that time.                       
The program, which earned her three Emmys, began with the premise that each             
drama was an answer to a question asked in her fan mail; the program's original         
title was Letter to Loretta. The title was changed to The Loretta Young Show             
during the first season, and the "letter" concept was dropped altogether at the         
end of the second season. At this time, Young's health required that there be a         
number of guest hosts and guest stars; her first appearance in the 1955-56               
season was for the Christmas show. From this point on, Young appeared in only           
about half of each season's shows as an actress and merely functioned as the             
program host for the remainder. This program, minus Young's introductions and           
summarized conclusions, was rerun in daytime by NBC from 1960 to 1964 and also           
appeared, again without the introductions and conclusions, in syndication.