Clara Bow was born on August 25, 1905 in Brooklyn
, New York. When she was born, her grandmother had already been placed in a mental institution
and her mother would eventually be in one as well. Even though her mother did not want Clara to be an actress
, (she once threatened her with a knife
) Clara pursued her ambitions on the silver screen.
Though her first role in film was left on the cutting room floor, she continued working in the field. For a number of years it was a struggle, and in the meantime her mother was put in an institution and her father raped her. During the roaring twenties, Clara moved to Hollywood and she began to get a number of roles. Some of these were "Wings," "The Best Bad Man," and "The Ancient Mariner." "It" would be the movie which would land her the nickname "The It Girl" forever. "It" referred to a strong sexuality she carried, and Clara was considered the number one sex symbol of the era. She had several lovers over the years, some of these including Victor Fleming and Gary Cooper.
When talkies were introduced, however, Clara's popularity quickly declined. She could not adjust to the microphones and would constantly forget lines. Clara began to go through bouts of mental insanity, and she received electroshock therapy and a variety of drugs to try to quell them. She died in her sleep in 1965.
Some of her films include:
"Beyond the Rainbow"
"Down to the Sea"
"The Daring Years"
"The Scarlet Wish"
"The Keeper of the Bees"
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