Douglas Fairbanks, Jr.

From Academic Kids

Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. (December 9, 1909May 7, 2000) was an American actor.

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Douglas Fairbanks, Jr.

He was born in New York City, New York, the son of actor Douglas Fairbanks and his first wife Anna Beth Sully. His parents divorced when he was ten years old. With his mother, he lived for a time in California, Paris, and London.

Largely on the basis of his name, he was given a contract at age fourteen with Paramount Pictures. After making some undistinguished films, he took to the stage, where he impressed his father, his step-mother Mary Pickford, and Charlie Chaplin, who encouraged him to continue with acting. He was also noticed by Joan Crawford, who began to date him. On June 3, 1929, in St. Malachy's Church, New York, New York, they were married.

Faribanks starred in several pictures with Loretta Young, and with Little Caesar, Outward Bound and The Dawn Patrol his movies began to have more success.

He went on a delayed honeymoon to England, where he was entertained by Noel Coward and George, Duke of Kent. He became active in both society and politics, but Joan Crawford did not enjoy these activities and they were divorced in May 1933.

It has been claimed that Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. was one of the naked men in the incriminating photos which were used as evidence in the divorce trial of Margaret, Duchess of Argyll.

On April 22, 1939, he married Mary Lee Hartford (née Mary Lee Epling), a former wife of George Huntington Hartford, the Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company heir: they had three daughters. Mary Lee Fairbanks died of cancer in 1988. Three years later, on May 30, 1991 he married Vera Shelton.

He advocated U.S. support for Britain during World War II, and was created a KBE in 1949. In 1941, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt appointed him a special envoy to South America. later in the war, he was commissioned in the U.S. Navy commanding a group of British patrol boats during commando operations.

He died of a heart attack in New York. He is interred in the Hollywood Forever Cemetery in Hollywood, California, in the same crypt as his father.

Fairbanks has two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, one for motion pictures at 6318 Hollywood Boulevard and one for television at 6665 Hollywood Boulevard.


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