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Clara Bow ACTOR


Clara Bow was born on July 29th, 1905 in Brooklyn, New York, USA as Clara Gordon Bow.  Her father was a waiter and she grew up in a poor family.  She was actually one of 3 girls born, but her two sisters had died at infancy.  Her mother, Sarah, was only 16 years old when she fell from a second story window and from then on was diagnosed with psychosis due to epilepsy which caused seizures and delusional behavior.  Clara, at a young age was already helping to care for her mother, and pretty much lost any chance of a real childhood.
At the age of 16, Clara entered a magazine beauty contest and won.  Part of the prize was a paid trip to visit the New York Studios and she was also promised as part of the prize a small part in a silent film.  This was her chance to begin her pursuit into the entertainment industry.
Soon after she began receiving other small roles in mostly low budget films such as, "Beyond the Rainbow" (1922), which brought her considerable attention, even though her scenes were actually cut from the film.  Soon after, Clara was being cast in starring roles in such movies as, "Down to the Sea in Ships" (1922) and "The Plastic Age" (1925).  Even though on January 5th, 1923, Clara had lost her mother who passed away in a mental institution, she did not stop pursuing her acting career.   
She began working in the industry under contract with B.P. Shulberg and from there she went with Paramount.  Her first big break was in, "Mantrap" (1926) which was a hit followed by roles in both, "Kid Boots" (1926) and "Dancing Mothers" (1926).
During the flapper age, Clara Bow was viewed as a vibrant and energetic woman.  The look she portrayed was being copied by woman everywhere.  She then starred in, "It" (1927), hence her nickname the 'it' girl and in 1928, she was named America's favorite actress.  She was personifying the 1920's and was becoming a big star and in 1928, Clara Bow was the highest paid movie star making $35,000 per week. 
Clara Bow worked on about 30 films total, some of the more well known ones were, "Rough House Rosie (1927), "Ladies of the Mob" (1928), "Three Weekends" (1928), "Dangerous Curves" (1929) and "The Saturday Night Kid" (1929).  Her final Paramount Feature film was, "Kick In" (1931) which during the filming of this movie, she suffered a nervous breakdown and this was the deciding factor that the movie business was no longer for her. 
Clara Bow was having a difficult time transitioning from silent films to films with sound.  Not only was it difficult due to her strong Brooklyn accent, but also due to some highly publicized scandals she was involved in with gambling debt and unpaid taxes.  Clara Bow tried to retire in 1931 and this same year she eloped with a cowboy star, Rex Bell at the age of 26.  She did try one more time in to make a comeback in, "Call Her Savage" (1932) and "Hoopla" (1933), however her attempt was unsuccessful and she then retired for good at the age of 28.  

The remainder of her life was spent living quietly on a Nevada cattle ranch owned by her husband.  In her later years she suffered from psychiatric problems and in 1949, her husband sent her to a top mental institution in the nation to get her help. 

Clara Bow passed away September 27th, 1965 in Los Angeles, California from a heart attack.  She had two sons with her husband Rex Bell Jr. and George Robert.  In 1994, she was honored with her image on a  US postage stamp.

1922   Beyond the Rainbow
1922   Down to the Sea in Ships
1923   Enemies of Women
1923   The Daring Years
1923   Maytime Alice Tremaine
1923   Black Oxen
1924   Grit 
1924   Poisoned Paradise
1924   Daughters of Pleasure
1924   Wine
1924   Empty Hearts
1924   Helen's Babies
1924   This Woman
1924   Black Lightning Martha Larned
1925   Capital Punishment Delia Tate
1925   The Adventurous Sex
1925   Eve's Lover Rena D'Arcy
1925   The Lawful Cheater
1925   The Scarlet West
1925   My Lady's Lips Lola Lombard
1925   Parisian Love Marie
1925   Kiss Me Again Grizette
1925   The Keeper of the Bees
1925   The Primrose Path
1925   Free to Love Marie Anthony
1925   The Best Bad Man
1925   The Plastic Age
1925   The Ancient Mariner
1925   My Lady of Whims
1926   Shadow of the Law
1926   Two Can Play
1926   Dancing Mothers Kittens Westcourt
1926   Fascinating Youth
1926   The Runaway
1926   Mantrap
1926   Kid Boots
1927   It
1927   Children of Divorce
1927   Rough House Rosie
1927   Wings
1927   Hula
1927   Get Your Man 
1928   Red Hair
1928   Ladies of the Mob
1928   The Fleet's In
1928   Three Weekends
1929   The Wild Party
1929   Dangerous Curves
1929   The Saturday Night Kid
1930   True to the Navy
1930   Love Among the Millionaires
1930   Her Wedding Night
1931   No Limit
1931   Kick In
1932   Call Her Savage
1933   Hoop-La
1949   Screen Snapshots

Matinee Classics - Clara Bow, the
Matinee Classics - Clara Bow, the
Matinee Classics - Clara Bow, the

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