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Barbra Streisand Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (4) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (2) | Trade Mark (2) | Trivia (85) | Personal Quotes (14) | Salary (8)

Overview (4)

Date of Birth 24 April 1942Williamsburg, Brooklyn, New York City, New York, USA
Birth NameBarbara Joan Streisand
Nickname Babs
Height 5' 5" (1.65 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Barbra Streisand is an American singer, actress, director and producer and one of the most successful personalities in show business. She is the only person ever to receive all of the following: Oscar, Tony, Emmy, Grammy, Golden Globe, Cable Ace, National Endowment for the Arts, and Peabody awards, as well as the American Film Institutes Lifetime Achievement honor and the Film Society of Lincoln Center Chaplin Award.

She was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1942 to Diana (née Ida Rosen), a singer turned school secretary, and Emanuel Streisand, a high school teacher. Her father was of Galician (Polish) Jewish descent and her mother was of Russian Jewish ancestry. As a child she attended the Beis Yakov Jewish School in Brooklyn. She was raised in a middle-class family and grew up dreaming of becoming an actress (or even an actress / conductor, as she happily described her teenage years at one of her concerts).

After a period as a nightclub singer and off-Broadway performer in New York City she began to attract interest and a fan base, thanks to her original and powerful vocal talent. She debuted on Broadway in the 1962 musical comedy "I Can Get It For You Wholesale" by Harold Rome, receiving a Tony Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress and a New York Drama Critics Poll award. The following year she reached great commercial success with her first Columbia Records solo releases, "The Barbra Streisand Album" (multiple Grammy winner, including "Best Album of the Year") and "The Second Barbra Streisand Album" (her first RIAA Gold Album); these albums, mostly devoted to composer Harold Arlen, brought her critical praise and, most of all, public acclaim all over the US. In 1964 she continued ha another smash Broadway hit when she portrayed legendary Broadway star Fanny Brice in "Funny Girl" by Jule Styne and Bob Merrill; the show's main song, "People". became her first hit and she appeared on the cover of "Time" magazine. After many TV appearances as guest on various music and variety shows (such as an episode of The Judy Garland Show (1963), for which she was nominated for 1963 Emmy), she signed an exclusive contract with CBS for a series of annual TV special:s My Name Is Barbra (1965) (which won an Emmy) and )Color me Barbra (1965) (TV)_ her first work in color) were extremely successful.

After a brief London stage period and the birth of her son Jason Gould (with then-husband Elliott Gould), in summer 1967 she gave a memorable free concert in New York City, "A Happening in Central Park", that was filmed and later broadcast (in an edited version) as a TV special; then she flew to Hollywood for her first movie, Funny Girl (1968), a filming of her stage success. The picture, directed by William Wyler, opened in 1968 and became a hit in the US and abroad, making her an international "superstar' and multiple award winner, including an Oscar (her first) as Best Actress. After a series of screen musicals, such as _Gene Kelly (I)''s _Hello Dolly (1969)_ and Vincente Minnelli's On a Clear Day You Can See Forever (1970), she wanted to try comedies, resulting in such films as The Owl and the Pussycat (1970) and What's Up, Doc? (1972). She turned to dramas and turned out Up the Sandbox (1972) and the classic The Way We Were (1973), directed by Sydney Pollack and co-starring Robert Redford, in which she gave what many consider to be her finest performance. The song "The Way We Were" (written by Marvin Hamlisch and Alan Bergman and Marilyn Bergman) became one of her biggest hits and most memorable and famous songs.

She returned to TV for a new special conceived as a musical journey covering many world musical styles, Barbra Streisand and Other Musical Instruments (1973), then returned (for contractual reasons) to her Fanny Brice role in a sequel to her hit "Funny Girl film, Funny Lady (1975), and the next year turned out one of her most personal film projects, A Star Is Born (1976), one of the biggest hits of the year for which she won a Golden Globe for Best Actress and her second Oscar, for the song "Evergreen". Always extremely busy on the discography side, averaging one album a year throughout the '70s and '80s, she had a string of successful singles and albums, such as "You Don't Bring Me Flowers" (duet with 'Neil Diamond'), "Enough is Enough" (with Donna Summer), "The Main Event" (from her film The Main Event (1979) with her friend Ryan O'Neal) and the album "Guilty", written for her by The Bee Gees' Barry Gibb, which sold more than 10 million copies worldwide.

She debuted as a director with the musical drama Yentl (1983), in which she also portrayed a Jewish girl who is forced to pass herself off as a man to pursue her dreams. The movie received generally positive reviews and the beautiful score by Michel Legrand and lyricists Marilyn Bergman and Alan Bergman stands up as one of Streisand's finest musical works. The film received several Oscar nominations, winning in two categories, but she was not nominated as Best Director, which disappointed both her and her fans, many of whom consider this the Academy's biggest "snub".

In 1985 her album "The Broadway Album was an unexpected runaway success, winning a Grammy Award and helping to introduce a new generation to the world of American musical theater. In 1986 she performed in a memorable concert, after 20 years of stage silence, "One Voice" (1986). She returned to the screen in the Nuts (1987), a drama directed by Martin Ritt, in the role of a prostitute accused of murder who fights to avoid being labeled "insane" at her trial. In she appeared in The Prince of Tides (1991), which many consider to be the pinnacle of her screen career, playing a psychiatrist who tries to help a man (Nick Nolte) to find the pieces of his past life: the film received seven Oscar nominations (but again NOT for Best Directing), but she did receive a nomination from the DGA (Directors Guild of America) for Best Director. In 1994 she returned to the stage after 27 years for a series of sold-out concerts (for the televised version of one of these, she won another Emmy).

In the 1990s she broke several personal records: with two #1 albums ("Back to Broadway" in 1993 and "Higher Ground" in 1997) and became the only artist to achieve a #1 album on the Billboard charts in the 1960s, 1970s, 1980s and 1990s (she extended this record into the 21st century in 2009 with the jazz album "Love is the Answer"). In 1996 she starred in her third and last picture as director, The Mirror Has Two Faces (1996), with Jeff Bridges and Lauren Bacall. The film had a "the girl got the guy" ending, and the same happened to her in real life--the next year she married well known TV actor James Brolin.

In 2000 she focused her career again on concerts ("Timeless") and in 2006-07 with a European tour. She made only two more films--a supporting role as a sex therapist mother in the Ben Stiller comedy Meet the Fockers (2004) and its sequel, Little Fockers (2010), alongside Dustin Hoffman and Robert De Niro. She published a book, "Passion for Design", in 2010 and celebrated her friendship with the Bergmans with an entire album of their songs, "What Matters Most" (2011), that debuted in the top 10.

After a long break from filming, she is working on putting together a film version of the well known Jule Styne musical "Gipsy" and returned in a starring role for the 2012 holiday season with Guilt Trip (2011), a mother/son picture co-starring Seth Rogen and directed by Anne Fletcher. In almost 50 years of career, Streisand has contributed to the show business industry in a personal and unique way, collecting a multi-generational fan base; she hals a powerful and recognize vocal range, and a raucous and often self-deprecating sense of humor, which doesn't prevent her from showing the serious and dramatic sides of her personality. Her strong political belief in social justice infuses her professional career and personal life, and she makes no bones about what she believes; her willingness to put her money where her mouth is has resulted in some truly vicious attacks by many who hold opposite political views, but that hasn't stopped her from acting on her beliefs. She has been honored with the Humanitarian Award from the Human Rights Campaign, an Honorary Doctorate in Arts and Humanities from Brandeis University in 1995, an Honorary Doctorate of Philosophy from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in 2013 and the bestowing by the government of France the title of Commander of the Order of Arts and Letters. She supports many humanitarian causes through the Streisand Foundation and has been a dedicated environmentalist for many years; she endowed a chair in environmental studies in 1987 and donated her 24-acre estate to the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy. In addition, she was the lead funder for the Clinton Climate Change Initiative. This effort brought together a consortium of major cities around the world to drive down greenhouse gas emissions. She is a leading spokesperson and fund-raiser for social and political causes close to her heart and has often dedicated proceeds from her live concert performances to benefit programs she supports.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Christian Marcone (qv's & corrections by A. Nonymous)

Spouse (2)

James Brolin (1 July 1998 - present)
Elliott Gould (21 March 1963 - 9 July 1971) (divorced) (1 son)

Trade Mark (2)

Director trademark: constantly shows her own character's fingernails
Her nose

Trivia (85)

She and Shirley MacLaine celebrate their joint birthday together every year.
Announced engagement to James Brolin. [May 1997]
Attended Bais Yakov School in Brooklyn, New York as a child.
Daughter of Diana Rosen and Emmanuel Streisand.
Has an older brother, Sheldon Streisand.
Singer/actress/director.
Mother, with Elliott Gould, of actor Jason Gould.
Older half-sister of Roslyn Kind.
When she and Neil Diamond had a smash hit in 1978 with "You Don't Bring Me Flowers", it was not the first time that the Brooklyn-born superstars had sung together. While students at New York City's Erasmus High School, they both sang in the school choir.
Supported Al Gore's bid for the presidency.
Is a staunch Democrat.
Spoke out against the nomination of former Missouri Senator John Ashcroft for Attorney General.
Born at 5:08 AM EST
Mary Martin, Anne Bancroft and Carol Burnett were all considered for the Broadway role of Fanny Brice before Barbra nabbed it. Singer Eydie Gormé was also considered but balked when they would not cast husband Steve Lawrence as Nicky Arnstein.
Named the best-selling female singer of the 20th century. She has sold more than 68 million records, with 47 Gold, 28 Platinum and 13 Multi-Platinum.
Female artist with most albums sold in US.
Only person to achieve Billboard #1 albums in each of the past six decades. 1964 "People", 1974 "The Way We Were", 1976 "Greatest Hits Vol. 2", 1978 "A Star Is Born", 1980 "Guilty", 1985 "The Broadway Album", 1993 "Back To Broadway", 1997 "Higher Ground", 2009 "Love Is The Answer", 2014 "Partners".
Solo artist with longest time span between first #1 and latest #1 albums (45 years between "People" and "Love Is The Answer").
Artist with longest career between top-20 hits on the Billboard pop music charts (32 years, 7 months between "People" [debuted 4 April 1964] and "I Finally Found Someone" [debuted 23 November 1996]).
Second most gold album certifications (47) {#1: Elvis Presley}.
Third most top 40 albums (45) {#1: Frank Sinatra}.
Fourth most top 10 albums (26) {#1: Frank Sinatra}.
Fourth most #1 albums (8) {#1: The Beatles}.
Fifth top Billboard-charting artist {#1: Elvis Presley}.
Highest grossing single concert, with $14,694,750, MGM Grand Garden Arena, December 31, 1999.
Second single largest grossing American concert engagement, with $16.6 million, seven performances, Madison Square Garden, 1994 (#1: $19 million, Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band, 15 performances, Continental Airlines Arena, 1999).
First woman since the silent era to direct, produce, write and star in a feature film; she also sings (Yentl (1983)).
Artist with Grammy nominations in the most categories -- 9.
Only artist to receive Oscar, Tony, Emmy, Grammy, Golden Globe, CableACE and Peabody awards.
Only Oscar recipient for both acting and songwriting.
Turned down the role of call girl Bree Daniels in Klute (1971), which won Jane Fonda an Oscar.
Was once a switchboard operator.
Graduated from Erasmus Hall High School in Brooklyn.
3 December 2003 - Her invasion-of-privacy suit over aerial photos taken of her Malibu home and shown on a web site dedicated to the California coastline was thrown out of court by a California judge. She claimed it would encourage stalkers.
Ranked #31 on VH1's 100 Greatest Women of Rock N Roll
She was voted the 54th Greatest Movie Star of all time by Entertainment Weekly.
Received a Special Tony Award in 1970. Previously, she was nominated twice for a Tony: in 1962 as Best Supporting or Featured Actress (Musical) for "I Can Get It for You Wholesale," and in 1964 as Best Actress (Musical) for portraying Fanny Brice in "Funny Girl," a signature role she recreated in her Oscar- winning performance in the film version of the same name, Funny Girl (1968).
Godmother of Caleigh Peters
Both of her husbands, Elliott Gould and James Brolin, starred in Capricorn One (1977).
Stepmother of Josh Brolin, J. Brolin and Molly Brolin.
Columbia Pictures wanted to cast Shirley MacLaine as Fanny Brice in Funny Girl (1968). However, Ray Stark, who produced the Broadway show and was Brice's son-in-law, insisted on Streisand repeating her Broadway role. Several co-stars later publicly blasted Streisand and director William Wyler for much of their scenes being cut in favor of focusing almost entirely on Streisand. Columbia was considering Frank Sinatra for the role of Nicky Arnstein, which she vetoed because she didn't like him. The final musical number, "My Man", was filmed "live" to both maximize Streisand's dramatic rendition and because she hated the lip-syncing process. At the time of the film's release, she was also a voting member of AMPAS.
While a struggling artist in the early 1960s, she lived at 1157 Third Avenue in Manhattan over Oscar's Salt of the Sea Restaurant. She shared the tiny $62-per-month apartment with Elliott Gould, who would later become her husband.
Film output toned down considerably after The Main Event (1979). She's only acted in six films since.
One of the elite actors who have nabbed an Oscar for their first film role.
In a controversial decision, she was allowed to become a voting member of the Academy prior to her first film, Funny Girl (1968), even being released and won the Oscar in a tie with Katharine Hepburn in The Lion in Winter (1968) a few months later.
She was awarded the American National Medal of the Arts in 2000 by the National Endowment of the Arts in Washington D.C.
[June 8, 2005] Manager Martin Erlichman announced 2006 20 City Fall Charity Tour.
Interviewed in "Directors Close Up: Interviews with Directors Nominated for Best Film by the Directors Guild of America", ed. by Jeremy Kagan, Scarecrow Press, 2006.
Is one of only five actors/actresses to have both a #1 single and an Oscar for best actor/actress. The others are 'Frank Sinatra' (Best Supporting Actor), Jamie Foxx, Cher and Bing Crosby.
Lost the 1964 Tony award for Best Actress in a Musical (nominated for "Funny Girl") to Carol Channing, who won for "Hello, Dolly"--a role Streisand played in the movie version (Hello, Dolly! (1969)).
Directed four different actors in Oscar-nominated performances: Amy Irving, Nick Nolte, Kate Nelligan and Lauren Bacall.
Turned down the role of Eva Peron in Evita (1996). She was the first choice of Ken Russell, who was the first director attached to the film.
Has sold 71.5 million albums in the US.
Is close friends with Dustin Hoffman and Dick Van Dyke.
Was considered for the part of Dwan in King Kong (1976).
In 2006 she donated $11,750,000 to the Barbra Streisand Foundation, numerous civil liberties, environmental and civil rights organizations "dedicated to democratic values".
(July 14, 2007) Played her first ever concert in Ireland in the palatial grounds of Castletown House, County Kildare.
While attending the funeral for President Bill Clinton's mother, she heard a church choir sing a song titled "On Holy Ground". The song was written by the choir director, Geron Davis. Upon hearing it she was so moved that she wanted to record it. The song appeared on her album "Higher Ground".
During the filming of Hello, Dolly! (1969), she and co-star Walter Matthau fought bitterly. He disliked her so intensely that he refused to be around her except when required to do so by the script. He is famously quoted as telling her that she "had no more talent than a butterfly's fart". Interestingly, he is clearly seen in the audience at her One Voice (1986) concert at her Malibu ranch, where invitation-only guests paid $5,000 per couple to help establish the Barbra Streisand Foundation, which supports numerous charitable organizations. Apparently, he did not hold grudges.
Has a great fear of performing live.
Is good friends with Shirley MacLaine and Donna Karan.
Was the first choice for Sally Bowles in Cabaret (1972), but turned it down because she wanted to move away from musicals. As a result, the part was given to second choice Liza Minnelli, who went on to win an Academy Award for her performance.
Was considered for the role of Liliane La Fleur in Nine (2009), but the part was eventually given to Judi Dench.
Has had the same assistant--a woman called Renata--for 37 years.
Her favorite modern actress is Meryl Streep.
She studied drama at HB Studio in Greenwich Village in New York City.
Is one of the only 12 people who are an EGOT--one who has at least one of all of the four major entertainment awards: Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony. The other ones in chronological order are Richard Rodgers, Helen Hayes, Rita Moreno, Liza Minnelli, John Gielgud, Audrey Hepburn, Marvin Hamlisch, Jonathan Tunick, Mel Brooks, Mike Nichols and Whoopi Goldberg. Barbra, however, won a Special Tony Award, not a competitive one, and Minnelli won a Special Grammy.
Returned to work six months after giving birth to her son Jason Gould in order to begin recording her 11th album, "A Christmas Album".
Discovered that she was pregnant with her son Jason Gould when she was starring in the London production of "Funny Girl".
Stepmother-in-law of Diane Lane.
At Erasmus High School she said she had an unrequited crush on a schoolmate who also would achieve international renown--chess genius Bobby Fischer.
Asked if she had any regrets looking back over her career, Barbra stated during an "Extra" interview (she was promoting The Guilt Trip (2012)) that she wished she had appeared in more films. She kiddingly said she gave Jane Fonda her award-winning career by turning down They Shoot Horses, Don't They? (1969), Klute (1971) and Julia (1977).
Uncharacteristically for her, when she recorded the Leonard Bernstein / Stephen Sondheim song "Somewhere" for "The Broadway Album" (1985), the entire backing score was generated on synthesizers under the supervision of producer David Foster. No orchestra whatsoever.
Is planning to produce and direct a musical version of All About Eve (1950). [January 2004]
Release of the book, "Barbra: The Way She Is" by Christopher Andersen.
Preparing for a 24-city tour which will begin on Ocotber 4, 2006. [August 2006]
Her paternal grandparents, Isaac Streisand and Anna Kesten, were Austrian Jewish immigrants (from Galicia). Her maternal grandparents, Louis Rosen and Ida Friedland, were Russian Jews.
She was the first woman to ever win a Golden Globe as Best Director. As of 2013, she still remains as sole winner.
Was the 66th actress to receive an Academy Award; she won the Best Actress Oscar for Funny Girl (1968) at The 41st Annual Academy Awards (1969) on April 14, 1969.
Was considered for the role of "Sandy Olsson" in Grease (1978).
According to a 1980 interview with her mother Diana Kind, Barbra's maternal grandfather was a cantor with "a terrific voice".
Is one of four actresses to win the Best Actress Oscar for her film debut (Funny Girl (1968)). The others are Shirley Booth (for Come Back, Little Sheba (1952)), Julie Andrews (for Mary Poppins (1964)), and Marlee Matlin (for Children of a Lesser God (1986)).
Is one of 26 actresses to have received an Academy Award nomination for their performance in a musical; hers being Funny Girl (1968). The others, in chronological order, are: Bessie Love (The Broadway Melody (1929)), Grace Moore (One Night of Love (1934)), Jean Hagen (Singin' in the Rain (1952)), Marjorie Rambeau (Torch Song (1953)), Dorothy Dandridge (Carmen Jones (1954)), Deborah Kerr (The King and I (1956)), Rita Moreno (West Side Story (1961)), Gladys Cooper (My Fair Lady (1964)), Julie Andrews (Mary Poppins (1964), The Sound of Music (1965), and Victor Victoria (1982)), Debbie Reynolds (The Unsinkable Molly Brown (1964)), Peggy Wood (The Sound of Music (1965)), Carol Channing (Thoroughly Modern Millie (1967)), Kay Medford (Funny Girl (1968)), Liza Minnelli (Cabaret (1972)), Ronee Blakley (Nashville (1975)), Lily Tomlin (Nashville (1975)), Ann-Margret (Tommy (1975)), Lesley Ann Warren (Victor Victoria (1982)), Amy Irving (Yentl (1983)), Nicole Kidman (Moulin Rouge! (2001)), Queen Latifah (Chicago (2002)), Catherine Zeta-Jones (Chicago (2002)), Renée Zellweger (Chicago (2002)), Jennifer Hudson (Dreamgirls (2006)), Penelope Cruz (Nine (2009)), Anne Hathaway (Les Misérables (2012)), and Meryl Streep (Into the Woods (2014)).
Is one of 14 actresses to have won both the Best Actress Academy Award and the Best Actress in a Comedy/Musical Golden Globe for the same performance; hers being for Funny Girl (1968). The others, in chronological order, are: Judy Holliday for Born Yesterday (1950), Julie Andrews for Mary Poppins (1964), Liza Minnelli for Cabaret (1972), Glenda Jackson for A Touch of Class (1973), Diane Keaton for Annie Hall (1977), Sissy Spacek for Coal Miner's Daughter (1980), Cher for Moonstruck (1987), 'Jessica Tandy for Driving Miss Daisy (1989), Helen Hunt for As Good as It Gets (1997), Gwyneth Paltrow for Shakespeare in Love (1998), Reese Witherspoon for Walk the Line (2005), Marion Cotillard for La Vie en Rose (2007), and Jennifer Lawrence for Silver Linings Playbook (2012).
Is one of 20 actresses who did not receive an Oscar nomination for their Best Actress in a Comedy/Musical Golden Globe-winning performance; hers being for A Star Is Born (1976). The others, in chronological order, are: June Allyson for Too Young to Kiss (1951), Ethel Merman for Call Me Madam (1953), Jean Simmons for Guys and Dolls (1955), Taina Elg and Kay Kendall for Les Girls (1957), Marilyn Monroe for Some Like It Hot (1959), Rosalind Russell for A Majority of One (1961) and Gypsy (1962), Patty Duke for Me, Natalie (1969), Twiggy for The Boy Friend (1971), Raquel Welch for The Three Musketeers (1973), Bernadette Peters for Pennies from Heaven (1981), Kathleen Turner for Romancing the Stone (1984) and Prizzi's Honor (1985), Miranda Richardson for Enchanted April (1991), Jamie Lee Curtis for True Lies (1994), Nicole Kidman for To Die For (1995), Madonna for Evita (1996), Renée Zellweger for Nurse Betty (2000), Sally Hawkins for Happy-Go-Lucky (2008), and Amy Adams for Big Eyes (2014).

Personal Quotes (14)

Oh God, don't envy me, I have my own pains.
The audience is the barometer of the truth.
I am simple, complex, generous, selfish, unattractive, beautiful, lazy, and driven.
I hate tooting my own horn, but after Steven Spielberg saw Yentl (1983), he said, "I wish I could tell you how to fix your picture, but I can't. It's the best film I've seen since Citizen Kane (1941)".
One thing's for sure: now when I look at Funny Girl (1968), I think I was gorgeous. I was too beautiful to play Fanny Brice.
I arrived in Hollywood without having my nose fixed, my teeth capped, or my name changed. That is very gratifying to me.
[on connecting] What is exciting is not for one person to be stronger than the other . . . but for two people to have met their match and yet are equally as stubborn, as obstinate, as passionate, as crazy as the other.
My niece saw Funny Girl (1968) and said, "How come you're singing so many songs from Glee (2009)?".
[on the lack of Academy recognition of Yentl (1983)] In Hollywood a woman can be an actress, a singer, a dancer. But don't let her be too much more.
When I sing, people shut up.
[on Zach Galifianakis] In life I'm not a prude. In film I'm still a prude. Like when I saw that movie The Hangover (2009) with the guy Javalopolis? He was naked in the elevator, and I heard later it was not his real thing. But everybody thinks it's his real thing.
[on playing the mother of a young man in The Guilt Trip (2012)] The fact that I had a son made a big difference. I could relate this to my son and the times we went through, those rebellious periods, how you're walking on eggshells, how you don't want to say the wrong thing but you're always saying the wrong thing.
[on Dustin Hoffman] We were in the same acting school when I was 16, 17 years old. I used to babysit to get free acting lessons, and he was the janitor.
[on having to establish eating a 50-ounce steak in The Guilt Trip (2012)] That's where the filmmaker in me came out. The actress didn't want to do that scene. I said, "Can I come up with something other than eating?" But I thought it would serve the film so I said, "OK, I'll do it". But it was hard. I don't eat steak. One bite for me is enough. So they had to devise a way to make things look like steak. I still had to eat it for three days.

Salary (8)

Funny Girl (1968) $200,000
Hello, Dolly! (1969) $750,000
On a Clear Day You Can See Forever (1970) $350,000
The Owl and the Pussycat (1970) $1,000,000
A Star Is Born (1976) $15,000,000 (including %)
All Night Long (1981) $4,000,000
Yentl (1983) $3,000,000 (to direct, co-write, produce and star)
The Mirror Has Two Faces (1996) $20,000,000 plus percentage of profits

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