Favourite actresses from the 20'sby CurledAngel | created - 6 months ago | updated - 2 months ago | Public
1. Mae Busch
Actress | Sons of the Desert
Mae Busch can certainly claim career versatility, having successfully played Erich von Stroheim's mistress, Lon Chaney's girlfriend, Charley Chase's sister, James Finlayson's ex-wife and Oliver Hardy's wife! She was born in Melbourne, Australia, in 1891; her parents were in the theater and when she...
2. Ena Gregory
Actress | Grinning Guns
Ena Gregory was born on April 18, 1906 in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. She was an actress, known for Grinning Guns (1927), In the Palace of the King (1923) and The Calgary Stampede (1925). She was married to Abe Steinberg, Dr. Frank G. Nolan and Albert S. Rogell. She died on June 13, 1993 in...
Actress | Orlacs Hände
Carmen Cartellieri was born on June 28, 1891 in Prossnitz, Moravia, Austria-Hungary as FranziskaOttilia Cartellieri. She was an actress, known for The Hands of Orlac (1924), Parema, Creature from the Starworld (1922) and Die Sportlady (1922). She died on October 17, 1953 in Vienna, Austria.
4. Liane Haid
Actress | Marquis d'Eon, der Spion der Pompadour
Liane Haid was a prima ballerina, dancer, singer, stage and film actress. As a child, she studied voice and dancing and played at the Viennese Open Ballet. She worked in Budapest and Vienna as a dancer. On stage, she was in Berlin and Vienna. She also made close to a hundred movies - silents and ...
5. Claire Adams
Actress | The Big Parade
Claire Adams was born in Winnipeg, Canada (her brother was prolific screenwriter Gerald Drayson Adams), and after her education in that country she was sent to a private school in England, where she studied drama. At the outbreak of World War I, however, she joined the nursing corps and spent the ...
Actress | Coquette
Mary Pickford was born Gladys Louise Smith in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, to Elsie Charlotte (Hennessy) and John Charles Smith. She was of English and Irish descent. Pickford began in the theater at age seven. Then known as "Baby Gladys Smith", she toured with her family in a number of theater ...
Actress | The Racket
Popular star in Hollywood for two decades through 1936, Marie Prevost began as a Mack Sennett "Bathing Beauty" in 1917, later starring in dozens of light comedies. But not long into the sound era, she encountered problems with her burgeoning weight, to the jeopardy of her career. Her self-remedy ...
8. Ann Forrest
Actress | Love's Boomerang
Ann Forrest was born on April 14, 1895 in Sønderho, Denmark as Anna Kromann. She was an actress, known for Love's Boomerang (1922), The Rainbow Trail (1918) and The Grim Game (1919). She was married to F. Steel Bain and Mr. D'Lisle (third). She died on October 25, 1985 in San Diego, California, USA.
9. Lil Dagover
Actress | Das Cabinet des Dr. Caligari
A prominent German film actress born on 30 September 1887 at Madiven, Java, the daughter of a forest ranger in the service of the Dutch authorities. Sent at the age of ten to Baden-Baden to study, she later entered the cinema thanks to her marriage in 1917 to the actor Fritz Dagover who was 25 ...
10. Brigitte Helm
Actress | Metropolis
After her role in Metropolis (1927) she made a string of movies in which she almost always had the starring role, easily making the transition to sound films. Her last film was An Ideal Spouse (1935) (An Ideal Spouse) in 1935.
11. Ossi Oswalda
Actress | Amor am Steuer
Ossi Oswalda was born Oswalda Staglich on February 2, 1899 in Berlin, Germany. She trained to be a ballerina and worked in chorus lines when she was a teenager. Director Ernst Lubitsch discovered her and cast her in his 1916 film The Shoe Palace. Over the next five years she appeared in many of ...
12. Elza Temary
Actress | Der Bettler vom Kölner Dom
Elza Temary was born on February 12, 1905 in Germany as Elsa Klecker. She was an actress, known for Der Bettler vom Kölner Dom (1927), Salamander (1928) and Harry Hill im Banne der Todesstrahlen (1924). She was married to Howard S. Splane. She died on February 16, 1968 in Tucson, Arizona, USA.
13. Vilma Bánky
Actress | The Eagle
Vilma Bánky appeared in Hungarian, Austrian and French movies between 1920 and 1925, the year in which Samuel Goldwyn signed her, in Budapest, to a Hollywood contract. In Hollywood she was billed as the "The Hungarian Rhapsody". In the mid and late 1920s she was Goldwyn's biggest money maker, ...
14. Eileen Percy
Actress | The Husband Hunter
Eileen Percy was born in Belfast, Ireland on August 21, 1900. She got an early start in films when she landed the role of Ethel Forsythe in 1917's Down to Earth (1917). She was barely 17 years old. Eileen was kept busy as the twenties rolled in with roles in The Third Eye (1920), Why Trust Your ...
15. Gilda Gray
Actress | Piccadilly
The creator of 'the Shimmy' was a voluptuous blonde dancer with mischievous eyes, born Marianna Michalska in Kracow, Poland. Her parents died tragically and she was eventually adopted from an orphanage. Her foster-parents took her to the U.S. in 1909, where she commenced her career singing in her ...
16. Anny Ondra
Actress | Blackmail
Anny Ondra was a Polish-Czech-Austrian-German-French singer and a film and stage actress. As a child she lived in Prague, where her father was a colonel in the Austro-Hungarian army. After graduating from convent school in Prague, she studied to be an actress with Professor Bor. She was already a ...
17. Olga Baclanova
Actress | Freaks
Born Olga Vladimirovna Baklanova, one of six children of Vladimir Baklanoff and his wife Alexandra, later billed as the Russian Tigress in her early talking films, was born August 19, 1893. She graduated from the Cherniavsky Institute in Moscow prior to her selection in 1912 at age 19 to apprentice...
18. Betty Balfour
Actress | Champagne
Betty Balfour was born on March 27, 1903 in London, England. She was an actress, known for Champagne (1928), Squibs (1935) and Squibs' Honeymoon (1923). She was married to Jimmy Campbell. She died on November 4, 1977 in Weybridge, Surrey, England.
19. Mary Alden
Actress | The Earth Woman
Mary Maguire Alden was born in New York City on June 18, 1883. She appeared in her first film when she was 31 years old in the production of The Second Mrs. Roebuck (1914). From that point on, Mary was kept very busy in the studios in New York. When the film companies moved west, Mary went with ...
20. Clara Bow
Actress | Wings
Clara Gordon Bow, destined to become "The It Girl", was born on July 29, 1905 in Brooklyn, New York, and was raised in poverty and violence. Her often absentee and brutish father could not or did not provide and her schizophrenic mother tried to slit Clara's throat when the girl spoke of becoming ...
21. Betty Blythe
Actress | She
Brunette, buxom matinee idol Betty Blythe capitalised on the 'roaring 20's' infatuation with exotic screen sirens to achieve a brief period of stardom. She was notoriously one of the first actresses to ever appear nude (or in various stages of undress) on screen. It wasn't that Betty couldn't act, ...
22. Louise Brooks
Actress | Die Büchse der Pandora
Mary Louise Brooks, also known by her childhood name of Brooksie, was born in the midwestern town of Cherryvale, Kansas, on November 14, 1906. She began dancing at an early age with the Denishawn Dancers (which was how she left Kansas and went to New York) and then with George White's Scandals ...
23. Bebe Daniels
Actress | The Maltese Falcon
Bebe Daniels already had toured as an actor by the age of four in a stage production of "Richard III". She had her first leading role at the age of seven and started her film career shortly after this in movies for Imperial, Pathe and others. At 14 she was already a film veteran, and was enlisted ...
24. Mildred Davis
Actress | Safety Last!
Mildred Davis was born on February 22, 1901 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA as Mildred Hillary Davis. She was an actress, known for Safety Last! (1923), A Sailor-Made Man (1921) and Grandma's Boy (1922). She was married to Harold Lloyd. She died on August 18, 1969 in Santa Monica, California, ...
Actress | Stowaway
A gentle-mannered, somewhat mournful-looking actress, brown-haired Helen Jerome Eddy enjoyed a substantial career in the silents, often in genteel, well-bred roles which required a certain amount of pathos. After acting on the stage at the Pasadena Playhouse, she began in films with the Lubin ...
26. Julia Faye
Actress | The Ten Commandments
Julia Faye's career is inextricably linked to director Cecil B. DeMille. He was her mentor, while she was for many years his mistress (a liaison which was tolerated by De Mille's long-suffering wife Constance Adams). Julia was born in Richmond, Virginia, of French-American parentage. She had a ...
Actress | Bonds of Love
Pauline Frederick was born Pauline Beatrice Libby in Boston, Massachusetts on August 12, 1883. She was fascinated with show business from an early age and throughout her childhood, she was bred for a career in music. It has been said she had a terrific soprano voice, but Pauline also dabbled a bit ...
28. Lillian Gish
Actress | The Night of the Hunter
Lillian Diana Gish was born on October 14, 1893 in Springfield, Ohio. Her father, James Lee Gish, was an alcoholic who caroused around, was rarely at home and left the family to more or less to fend for themselves. To help make ends meet, Lillian, her sister Dorothy Gish and their mother Mary Gish ...
29. Katherine Grant
Actress | Wild Papa
Katherine Grant was born on May 1, 1904 in Los Angeles, California. Her parents divorced and her father passed away in 1921. At the age of eighteen she won the Miss Los Angeles beauty contest and competed in the Miss America pageant. Katherine worked as a professional dancer and to make extra money...
30. Dorothy Janis
Actress | The Green Archer
Dorothy Janis' short film career began when she was visiting a cousin, who was working on a film at Fox in 1927. Her beauty was noticed at once and she was asked to test for a role. She made only five films, four silents and one talkie (Lummox). She is best known for her performance opposite Ramon ...
31. Laura La Plante
Actress | The Cat and the Canary
Laura La Plante was 15 years old when she entered films as a Christie Comedy Bathing Beauty. By 1921, she had played a number of roles including a Tom Mix Western called The Big Town Round-Up (1921) for Fox and The Old Swimmin' Hole (1921) for First National. Laura, now 17, next signed with ...
32. Lila Lee
Actress | The Unholy Three
A performer since childhood (she was widely known then as "Cuddles"), pert and pretty, raven-haired Lila Lee was brought to Hollywood by Paramount mogul Jesse L. Lasky and debuted in a starring role with The Cruise of the Make-Believes (1918) as a poor girl supported by a rich admirer. Following ...
33. Bessie Love
Actress | The Broadway Melody
Bessie Love was born in Texas. Her cowboy father moved the family to Hollywood, where he became a chiropractor. As the family needed money, Bessie's mother sent her to Biograph Studios, hoping she would become an actress. D.W. Griffith saw she was pretty and had some acting talent, and put her in ...
34. June Marlowe
Actress | Below the Line
June Marlowe was born on November 6, 1903 in St. Cloud, Minnesota, USA as Gisela Valaria Goetten. She was an actress, known for Below the Line (1925), Pardon Us (1931) and The Life of Riley (1927). She was married to Rodney Sprigg. She died on March 10, 1984 in Burbank, California, USA.
35. Colleen Moore
Actress | Lilac Time
Colleen Moore was born Kathleen Morrison in Port Huron, Michigan. Her father was an irrigation engineer and his job was good enough to provide the family a middle-class environment. She was educated in parochial schools and studied at the famed Detroit Conservatory. Colleen's family moved to ...
36. Nita Naldi
Actress | Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
Nonna Dooley, the future silent screen star, began her career as a showgirl in a Shubert revue in the Winter Garden, later went on to the famed Ziegfeld Follies.
After a successful career on the stage with the Follies, Nita decided to try her hand with films in Hollywood. Her rise to fame was very ...
37. Jane Novak
Actress | Colleen of the Pines
A soulful, fragile-looking blonde beauty, silent screen star Jane Novak was born in St. Louis, Missouri on January 12, 1896, and supposedly began her film career at age 17 when a director took to a photo of the young girl on the makeup table of her own aunt, the film star Anne Schaefer. From 1913 ...
38. Sally Phipps
Actress | Why Sailors Go Wrong
Sally Phipps was born on May 25, 1911 in Oakland, California, USA as Nellie Bernice Bogdon. She was an actress, known for Why Sailors Go Wrong (1928), Bertha, the Sewing Machine Girl (1926) and The One Woman Idea (1929). She was married to Alfred Marion Harned and Benedict Gimbel Jr. She died on ...
39. Gloria Swanson
Actress | Sunset Blvd.
Gloria Swanson went to public schools in Chicago; Key West, Florida; and San Juan, Puerto Rico. Her film debut was as an extra in The Fable of Elvira and Farina and the Meal Ticket (1915). From the following year on, she had leading roles in pictures for Keystone, then a year with Triangle, and, in...
She was blonde; star sister Norma Talmadge was brunette. She was buoyant and a comedienne; Norma was introspective and a tragedienne. Nicknamed "Dutch" by her stage mother Peg as she looked like a cherubic Little Dutch Boy, silver screen star Constance Talmadge was one of silent pictures' most ...
41. Norma Talmadge
Actress | Smilin' Through
Norma Talmadge was born on May 26, 1895, in Jersey City, New Jersey. The daughter of an unemployed alcoholic and his wife, Norma did not have the idyllic childhood that most of us yearn for. Her father left the family on Christmas Day and his wife and three daughters had to fend for themselves. Her...
42. Anna May Wong
Actress | Piccadilly
Anna May Wong, the first Chinese-American movie star, was born Wong Liu Tsong on January 3, 1905, in Los Angeles, California, to laundryman Wong Sam Sing and his wife, Lee Gon Toy. A third-generation American, she managed to have a substantial acting career during a deeply racist time when the ...