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[   j e a n   h a r l o w   b i o g . ]

"Men like me because I don't wear a brassiere.
Women like me because I don't look like a girl
who would steal a husband. At least not for long."

- Jean Harlow




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  • Name: Jean Harlow
  • Birth name: Harlean Harlow Carpenter
  • Nickname:
      Baby
      The Platinum Blonde
  • Profession: Actress
  • Date of Birth: 3 March 1911
  • Place of Birth: Kansas City, Missouri, USA
  • Height: 5' 2" (1.57 m)
  • Spouses:
      Harold Rosson (1933 - 1935) (divorced)
      Paul Bern (1932 - 1932) (suicide)
      Charles Fremont McGrew (1927 - 1929) (divorced)
  • Died: 7 June 1937
  • Place of Death: Los Angeles, California, USA. (uremic poisoning brought on by acute nephritis)


    harlow

    b i o g r a p h y  :   f r a g m e n t s   f r o m   a   l i f e

    Jean Harlow (born Harlean Carpenter), was born on March 3, 1911 in Kansas City, Missouri. She was the daughter of a successful dentist and his wife. Jean's mother, known as Mother Jean, had dreams of becoming an actress, which led her to divorce her husband and move to Hollywood with her young daughter.Jean's mother never allowed her to see her father; however, Jean would sneak visits to him throughout her life. Mother Jean soon remarried a man named Marino Bello and the family moved to Chicago, where Jean attended high school."

    Poor health afflicted Jean throughout her childhood. At age five, she contracted meningitis and suffered from scarlet fever at age 15. Jean left home at age 16 to marry 23-year-old Charles McGrew. Shortly after the wedding the couple left Chicago and moved to Beverly Hills. Jean's true aspiration in life was to be a wife and mother, however she sought work as an extra in films to please Mother Jean. Although at first Jean was not interested in making films, she received her first role in Why is a Plumber? in 1927. She and McGrew divorced after two years, but her big career break was about to occur.

    In 1930, movie producer and entrepreneur Howard Hughes became interested in Jean and cast her in Hell's Angels. In Hell's Angels, she spoke the now famous line, "Would you be shocked if I changed into something more comfortable?" Jean's appearance in Hell's Angels solidified her role as America's new sex symbol.

    This victory was followed by another hit, Platinum Blonde, and several films with Clark Gable. In total, she and Gable would star in six movies together including Red Dust, The Secret Six and Wife vs. Secretary. During the filming of Red Dust, Jean's second husband of only two months, producer Paul Bern, committed suicide.

    In 1933's Dinner at Eight, Jean was at her comedic best. Later that year she starred in Bombshell, a Hollywood parody based loosely on her real-life experiences with her controlling mother and greedy stepfather.

    Also in 1933, Jean married cinematographer Harold Rosson in a union that would only last eight months. To accompany her escalating career, in 1935 she legally changed her name to Jean Harlow, a combination of her mother's maiden name.

    Following the end of her marriage, Jean found the love of her life in actor William Powell. They were together for two years. Powell was reluctant to marry Jean, as he was recently divorced from another actress, Carole Lombard. In his own words, he did not want "to be married to a woman that the whole world wants to sleep with."

    Jean's health soon declined. While filming Saratoga in 1937, Jean was hospitalized with uremic poisoning and kidney failure, a result of the scarlet fever she had suffered during childhood. In the days before dialysis and kidney transplants, nothing could be done and Jean died on June 7, 1937. The film had to be finished using long angle shots and a double, Mary Dees. Clark Gable was reported to have said that he felt as if he was "in the arms of a ghost." After a large Hollywood funeral organized by Louis B. Mayer of MGM, Jean was buried in the mausoleum in Forest Lawn Glendale, in Los Angeles.

    Jean was labeled a "screen siren" for her sensational dialogue and revealing costumes, but audiences, directors, and producers appreciated her flair for comedy and drama. Had she lived longer it is likely that she would have stayed on a successful path in Hollywood for years to come. In an acting career that lasted only 10 years, Jean Harlow forever established herself as one of the most captivating actresses of all time.

    Although she would sadly die young, Jean achieved a great deal of success during her lifetime. She made 36 movies, was voted #22 on the American Film Institute's list of the Greatest American Screen Legends (female), and became the first movie actress to appear on the cover of Life magazine.

    harlow



    j e a n   h a r l o w   f i l m o g r a p h y   ]
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  • Saratoga (1937) .... Carol Clayton
  • Personal Property (1937) .... Crystal Wetherby
    ... aka Man in Possession, The (1937)
  • Libeled Lady (1936) .... Gladys Benton
  • Suzy (1936) .... Suzanne 'Suzy' Trent
  • Wife vs. Secretary (1936) .... Helen 'Whitey' Wilson
  • Riffraff (1936) .... Hattie Tuttle
  • China Seas (1935) .... Dolly 'China Doll' Portland
  • Reckless (1935) .... Mona Leslie
  • Girl from Missouri, The (1934) .... Edith 'Eadie' Chapman
    ... aka 100 Per Cent Pure (1934) (UK)
    ... aka Born to Be Kissed (1934) (USA)
  • Bombshell (1933) .... Lola Burns
    ... aka Blonde Bombshell (1933) (UK)
  • Dinner at Eight (1933) .... Kitty Packard
  • Hold Your Man (1933) .... Ruby Adams
  • Red Dust (1932) .... Vantine 'Miss Van'/'Lily' Jefferson
  • Red-Headed Woman (1932) .... Lillian 'Lil'/'Red' Andrews Legendre
  • Beast of the City, The (1932) .... Daisy Stevens, aka Mildred Beaumont
  • Three Wise Girls (1932) .... Cassie Barnes
  • Beau Hunks (1931) (uncredited) .... Jeanie-Weenie (in photo)
    ... aka Beau Chumps (1931) (UK)
  • Platinum Blonde (1931) .... Anne Schuyler
  • Goldie (1931) .... Goldie
  • Iron Man (1931/I) .... Rose Mason
  • Public Enemy, The (1931) .... Gwen Allen
    ... aka Enemies of the Public (1931) (UK)
  • Secret Six, The (1931) .... Anne Courtland
  • City Lights (1931) (uncredited) .... Extra in restaurant scene
    ... aka City Lights: A Comedy Romance in Pantomime (1931) (USA)
  • Hell's Angels (1930) (as Jean Harlowe) .... Helen
  • New York Nights (1929) (uncredited) .... Party Girl
  • Weak But Willing (1929) (uncredited)
  • This Thing Called Love (1929) (uncredited) .... Bit Part
  • Love Parade, The (1929) (uncredited) .... Woman applauding in theater box
  • Saturday Night Kid, The (1929) .... Hazel
    ... aka Love 'Em and Leave 'Em (1929)
  • Bacon Grabbers (1929) .... Mrs. Kennedy
  • Thundering Toupees (1929)
  • Double Whoopee (1929) .... Swanky blonde
  • Unkissed Man, The (1929) (uncredited)
  • Close Harmony (1929) .... (uncredited)
  • Why Is a Plumber? (1929) (uncredited)
  • Why Be Good? (1929) (uncredited) .... Bit Part
  • Fugitives (1929) (uncredited) .... Bit Part
  • Liberty (1929) .... Woman in cab
    ... aka Criminals at Large (1929)
  • Chasing Husbands (1928)
  • Moran of the Marines (1928) (uncredited) .... Bit part


    gallery




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metropolis

a film by fritz lang, germany, 1927

reconstructed & restored 2010
150 minutes

available (22nd nov. 2010):
amazon.co.uk | metropolis microsite


metropolis


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biography | gallery | other galleries
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harlow rarities in stock
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madeleine carroll | marlene dietrich | greta garbo | ava gardner
rita hayworth | audrey hepburn | grace kelly | margaret lockwood
carole lombard

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Changes last made: 2014