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Marie Prevost Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (4) | Mini Bio (2) | Spouse (2) | Trade Mark (1) | Trivia (5)

Overview (4)

Born in Sarnia, Ontario, Canada
Died in Hollywood, California, USA  (extreme malnutrition and alcoholism)
Birth NameMary Bickford Dunn
Height 5' (1.52 m)

Mini Bio (2)

Marie Prevost was born Mary Bickford Dunn in Sarnia, Ontario, Canada, on November 8, 1898. She broke into films when she was 18 years old in Unto Those Who Sin (1916). Finding work in films was difficult in the early days, just as it is today. Marie found herself doing odd jobs until 1917, when she made another film, Secrets of a Beauty Parlor (1917). After filming was completed, Marie found herself unemployed again and went back to scraping around for a living. She kept going to casting calls, but it wasn't until 1919 when she landed a role in Uncle Tom Without a Cabin (1919). Finally, in 1921, movie moguls discovered her talent and began casting her in a number of roles. She appeared in four films that year and an additional six in 1922. Marie seemed to be on a roll. She stayed busy through the balance of the 1920s in a number of films, mostly comedies. As a matter of fact, she would continue making films until 1933, when her appeal began to fade. She made no films in 1934 and precious few after that. With the advent of sound her thick New England accent didn't lend itself well to the "demon microphone", despite her beauty. Her depression about her career--or lack of it--drove her to alcohol, and she died on January 23, 1937, in Hollywood, of a combination of alcoholism and malnutrition, virtually broke and living in a dilapidated apartment. She never saw the release, in 1938, of her final film appearance: Ten Laps to Go (1936). She was 38 years old.

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

Popular star in Hollywood for two decades through 1936. Began as a Mack Sennett "Bathing Beauty" in 1917, later starring in dozens of light comedies. But not long into the sound era, she would have encountered problems with her burgeoning weight, to the jeopardy of her career. Her self-remedy resulted ultimately in her starving to death. (See also Laird Cregar.)

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Bill Takacs <kinephile@aol.com>

Spouse (2)

Kenneth Harlan (1924 - 1927) (divorced)
H.C. (Sonny) Gerke (22 June 1918 - 7 October 1924) (divorced)

Trade Mark (1)

Plump, good-hearted best friend roles

Trivia (5)

Possibly most famous for being the subject of a Nick Lowe song, "Marie Provost" (sic).
Her death was not discovered until after neighbors had complained about incessant barking by her little dachshund.
Died from a combination of acute alcoholism and extreme malnutrition. ["The Celebrity Death Book," by James Robert Parish].
Sister of actress Peggy Prevost.
The fairy tale that Marie was eaten by her dog comes from a song made up about the incident. And from a story in the book "Hollywood Babylon". Miss Prevost was trying desperately to lose weight. She had virtually stopped eating and had replaced food with alcohol. Reports at the time felt that she had died on January 21, 1937, but was not found until January 23. Her neighbors had complained that little dachshund had been barking and sounded in distress. When police went in they found Marie dead and her dog at her side. She had some scratches on her hand where her dog had been pulling at her, probably to try to get her attention. So reports about the dog trying to chew on her body were ridiculously overblown.

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