Mary Pickford: From Here to Hollywood

Description

320 pages
Contains Photos, Bibliography, Index
$24.95
ISBN 0-00-215684-9
DDC 791.43'028'092

Author

Year

1990

Contributor

Reviewed by Pauline Carey

Pauline Carey is an actor, playwright and librettist, and author of the
children’s books Magic and What’s in a Name?

Review

In 1909, Mary Pickford made 42 films for D.W. Griffith, but her name
never appeared on the screen; Biograph actors worked anonymously. Ten
years later, the Toronto-born actress known as America’s Sweetheart
went into business with Douglas Fairbanks (soon to be her second
husband), D.W. Griffith, Charlie Chaplin, and William S. Hart to form
United Artists.

Eyman spends a lot of time in this biography unraveling the tangled
dealings of the motion picture industry, offering plenty of information
for the serious film student. Unfortunately, Pickford herself does not
emerge so clearly from the pages. Perhaps no other woman in films has
achieved the power that was in her grasp, yet she frittered it all away.
She was frequently unreasonable in her demands for money and attention,
yet she could be a good and loyal friend. She had a good instinct for
the business of movies and a natural talent as as actress, yet she was
not always intelligent about the way she managed her own career.

When she could no longer play the teenage roles that had made her
famous, she faded from the screen, finding it impossible to move into
more mature roles. She allowed herself to be smothered by the public’s
demands. Eyman has written the story of a star whose life came to a sad
end because she was unable to grow up.

Citation

Eyman, Scott., “Mary Pickford: From Here to Hollywood,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed February 21, 2024, https://cbra.library.utoronto.ca/items/show/10869.