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Film Description

Mary Pickford "She set the parameters for movie stardom, and she was the first to pay the price -- and it's a terrible price."
-- Scott Eyman, author, Mary Pickford: America's Sweetheart

It was the golden age of silent film, and she was the world's most celebrated actress. Known as America's sweetheart, Mary Pickford was famous for playing darling girls and feisty young women in wildly popular films seen around the globe. Her love affair with Hollywood's leading man, Douglas Fairbanks, turned her into an icon of glamour and romance, the Hollywood dream come true. But, as Mary would learn in the most painful way, fame is fickle and life at the top is precarious.

American Experience presents Mary Pickford, a 90-minute special that charts the rise and fall of the actress who became the most powerful woman in Hollywood. Written and directed by Sue Williams and produced by Kathryn Dietz and Sue Williams (Eleanor Roosevelt), Mary Pickford is the first in-depth look at her remarkable career and impact on today's Hollywood culture.

"Twenty-five years after her death, cinema fans are re-evaluating the intuitive, luminous acting of Mary Pickford, which pointed the way to 'the Method' and more natural styles," says Mark Samels, executive producer of American Experience. "Her creative and technical innovations were critical to the creation of the golden age of silent cinema and, ultimately, the worldwide passion for movies today."

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page created on 7.23.04
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