Douglas Fairbanks Jr. Was born into one of Hollywood’s first royal families. His father, Douglas Fairbanks senior, was a swashbuckling movie star. His stepmother was Mary Pickford. The two of them were among the founders of the Academy of Motion Picture, Arts and Sciences, you know, the people that give out the Oscars.
But, as you are about to hear, Douglas Fairbanks Jr was by no means a born actor
One the acting bug bit, he became as big a star as his father had been. Douglas Fairbanks Jr made his movie debut 100 years ago this month, in 1923, in a silent picture called “Stephen Steps Out.”. He made a few more silent pictures before becoming a major star in the 1920s and 30s in the talkies.
He was married three times, including a fiery relationship with actress. Joan Crawford.
He also served with distinction in the navy during world war II. But his military service was not his only contribution to the war effort, as you’ll hear in a few minutes.
Finally, in 1988, at the age of 79, Douglas Fairbanks Jr wrote his autobiography — at least, volume1 of his autobiography, a book. He called The Salad Days.
So I had the rare opportunity, which I was not about to pass up, to actually shake hands with and converse with a real life silent movie star.
So here now, from 1988, Douglas Fairbanks Jr
Douglas Fairbanks Jr died in 2000. Hewas 90.
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