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Jessie Matthews Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (4)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Family (1)  | Trivia (13)  | Personal Quotes (1)

Overview (4)

Born in London, England, UK
Died in Eastcote, Middlesex, England, UK  (cancer)
Birth NameJessie Margaret Matthews
Nicknames The Dancing Divinity
The English Ginger Rogers

Mini Bio (1)

Born to a huge, poor family in Soho in London's West End, Jessie Matthews became a big stage star in the late 1920s and 1930s, enjoying some crossover success in musical films. Her career never quite relaunched after the war, though, but she staged a comeback when she replaced the lead actress in the radio soap "Mrs Dale's Diary" in the 1960s. Her life was blighted by breakdowns of relationships and her own struggles with bad health and insecurity, and she wound up, amazingly, buried in an unmarked grave (only rectified after a TV documentary in the late 1980s brought this to light--beg, steal or borrow a copy of BBC's Timewatch (1982) documentary series episode "Catch A Fallen Star"). An amazing life.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Pete Lambert <pete@petelambert.freeserve.co.uk> (qv's & corrections by A. Nonymous)

Family (1)

Spouse Brian Lewis (August 1945 - October 1959)  (divorced)
Sonnie Hale (24 January 1931 - 3 July 1944)  (divorced)  (1 child)
Henry Lytton Jr. (17 February 1926 - 21 November 1929)  (divorced)

Trivia (13)

Plans for her to sing and dance on the silver screen with Fred Astaire never came to fruition. She was first choice to co-star in A Damsel in Distress (1937), playing the part which eventually went to the non-dancing Joan Fontaine.
'The Jessie Matthews Bar' is situated in the Adelphi Theatre, London, England, UK.
Started out as a chorus girl in the 1920s.
Weight: eight stone (112 lb) at time of filming Evergreen (1934). Source: newspaper interview.
Cousin of Belle Bennett.
Was a personal friend of Cole Porter who had written many of his most famous songs in honor of her.
She was awarded the OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) in the 1970 Queen's Birthday Honours List for services to drama.
Adopted Catherine, now Countess Grixoni.
She appeared in Tide soap powder commercials on television.
January 1981 she was hospitalized in Pinner with cancer.
At 30 she was top of the bill in the stage production 'Evergreen.
Had a son who died soon after he was born.
She was the first to sing Noel Cowards 'Room With a View' and Cole Porters Let's Do It.

Personal Quotes (1)

If I ceased to be a star, all that interest in my home life would evaporate, I believe. Perhaps it is the price one has to pay for being a star.

See also

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