2 user 2 critic

Olive Thomas: Everybody's Sweetheart (2003)

Olive Thomas: The Most Beautiful Girl in the World (original title)
Story of the life of silent-screen actress Olive Thomas, the wife of Jack Pickford and a former Ziegfeld showgirl. Hailed in her time as one of the most beautiful women in the world, Thomas... See full summary »


Andie Hicks (as Andi Hicks)


Sarah J. Baker (as Sarah Baker), Andie Hicks (as Andi Hicks)

On Disc

at Amazon


Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?



Credited cast:
Rosanna Arquette ... Narrator
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Dana Amendola Dana Amendola ... Himself
Allison Anders ... Herself
Elaina Archer Elaina Archer ... An Actress
Catheryn Clarke Catheryn Clarke ... Olive Thomas
Doris Eaton Doris Eaton ... Herself
Nora Erhardt Nora Erhardt ... Herself
Patricia Erhardt Patricia Erhardt ... Herself
John J. Flynn John J. Flynn ... Billy Bitzer (voice)
Eve Golden Eve Golden ... Herself
Keith Lawrence Keith Lawrence ... An Actor
Terence Moriarty Terence Moriarty ... Bernard Thomas
Hugh Munro Neely Hugh Munro Neely ... Harrison Fisher (voice)
Jack Pickford ... Himself (archive footage)
Daniel Selznick Daniel Selznick ... Himself


Story of the life of silent-screen actress Olive Thomas, the wife of Jack Pickford and a former Ziegfeld showgirl. Hailed in her time as one of the most beautiful women in the world, Thomas' rising film career was cut short by her tragic, and controversial, death at age 25. Written by frankfob2@yahoo.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis









Release Date:

25 September 2005 (Hungary) See more »

Also Known As:

Olive Thomas: Everybody's Sweetheart See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

See full technical specs »

Did You Know?

Crazy Credits

After the end credits, there is a short piece of bonus footage of Olive Thomas and a moose's head. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

So beautiful, so young...

This documentary begins with the portentous statement that Olive Thomas's ghost haunts the New Amsterdam Theatre in New York City, former site of the Ziegfeld Follies. I knew that Olive Thomas died in France (more about this later), so I took the ghost statement as a figure of speech. It turns out that this documentary means it literally: allegedly, Olive Thomas continues to be spotted at Ziegfeld's theatre despite having died thousands of miles away.

This documentary does a surprisingly impressive job of reconstructing the brief life and career of silent-film actress (and Ziegfeld beauty) Olive Thomas. Surprising, because there's so little material available: none of the people interviewed in this documentary ever knew her, not even 101-year-old Ziegfeld dancer Doris Eaton Travis. A great deal of credibility is given here to distant relations of Thomas who never met her: one talking-head cousin comments that her grandfather insisted that Thomas was murdered, but neglects to mention that her grandfather was a five-year-old boy at the time of the actress's death.

Necessarily, we get the usual lurks here, so often employed in documentaries of this sort. Modern-day actors, their faces kept out of frame, re-enact incidents from Thomas's life. We also see clips from her films, showing Thomas in character, used here to illustrate the subject's life ... for example, when Thomas's first marriage ends in divorce, the visual is a clip from one of Thomas's films, in which her on-screen character looks mournful. Devices like this are probably necessary: less excusable is the flat dull monotone narration of Rosanna Arquette.

Just occasionally, this documentary grabs the attention ... as when we see a brief clip from early in Thomas's movie career, showing three starlets who were expected to have major careers. Flanked by Thomas and Edna Purviance, the starlet in the middle is Virginia Rappe ... whose notorious death triggered the scandal that destroyed Roscoe Arbuckle's career.

There are some very impressive facts throughout this highly entertaining film, as well as glimpses at some very rare documents ... such as Olive Thomas's death certificate (from a French archive) and the sheet music of a song written for one of her silent films. (Many silents had songs specially written for piano accompaniment in the cinemas.) But we just occasionally get some nonsense here too. The narration tries to persuade us that producer David Selznick took the middle initial 'O' as a tribute to Olive. Wrong: David O. Selznick added his middle initial (which was actually a zero, standing for 'nothing') to distinguish himself from his namesake, a relative whom he despised.

Olive Thomas's death at age 25 remains controversial. After a quarrel with her husband Jack Pickford, she mixed syphilis medication with alcohol and drank it. The official verdict was accidental death: supposedly, she'd mistaken the medicine for a sleeping draught. But nobody would mix a sleeping draught with alcohol unless they were planning to kill somebody. I believe that Olive Thomas's death was intentional suicide. But this documentary succeeds in showing us what a splendid career and life she had before the sudden end. This documentary was financed by Hugh Hefner, who has financed several documentaries about legendary screen actresses. I'll rate this movie 8 out of 10.

17 of 17 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 2 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial

Recently Viewed