Darling shot to fame at the age of 4 as part of the popular "Our Gang" series of short silent films. Thanks to what the New York Times dubbed "her golden locks and a face like a kewpie doll," Darling -- whose mother legally changed her name, Dorothy Jean LeVake, at 5 months old -- kept busy in Hollywood, starring in 46 silent movies and six talkies between 1927 and 1929.
She continued to act as she grew, including appearing as the young Jane Eyre in a 1934 adaptation of the novel. Darling also made a name for herself on Broadway, starring in the debut of Rodgers and Hammerstein musical classic "Carousel" in 1945, in which she originated the role of Carrie Pipperidge.
In the 1970s, Darling moved to Dublin, Ireland,
Among those featured in "TCM Remembers 2011" are Farley Granger, the star of Luchino Visconti's Senso and Alfred Hitchcock's Rope and Strangers on a Train; Oscar-nominated Australian actress Diane Cilento (Tom Jones, Hombre), formerly married to Sean Connery; and two-time Oscar nominee Peter Falk (Murder, Inc., Pocketful of Miracles, The Great Race), best remembered as television's Columbo. Or, for those into arthouse fare, for playing an angel in Wim Wenders' Wings of Desire.
Also, Jane Russell, whose cleavage and sensuous lips in Howard Hughes' The Outlaw left the puritans of the Production Code Association apoplectic; another Australian performer, Googie Withers, among
Child stars, such as Elizabeth Taylor and Mickey Rooney, who have long and successful careers as adults are the exception. Edith Fellows, who has died aged 88, had a film career longer than most – it lasted 13 years from the age of six – though it wasn't without its ups and downs. It is a familiar story: a talented child, exploited by avaricious adults, often family members, suffers in later life.
Fellows, born in Boston, had a domineering paternal grandmother, who was left to take care of the two-month-old baby, whose mother had walked out on the family and disappeared. The grandmother later barred Edith's mostly absent father, a mechanic, from seeing his daughter when she got into the movies. "She did not want anyone around me," Fellows explained. "No one. Just the two of us."
In 1935, when Fellows was at the height of her fame,
The actress became the star of her own drama in the 1930s when she fought a custody battle with her own mother, who abandoned her as an infant.
She made her movie debut in 1929's Movie Night. By the time she became a teenager, she had appeared in more than 30 films, including The Rider of Death Valley and Mrs. Wiggs of the Cabbage Patch, alongside legendary funnyman W.C. Fields, and Pennies From Heaven with Bing Crosby.
Fellows died of natural causes at the Motion Picture & Television Fund’s retirement home in Woodland Hills, California on Sunday, according to the Los Angeles Times.
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