The Price They Paid for Stardom – By Myrtle West (Photoplay Nov. 1926)

Photoplay November 1926 Vol. XXX Number Six

The Price They Paid for Stardom

By Myrtle West

Do they profit by their popularity—or are they victims of fate?

Irving G. Thalberg, Lillian Gish, Louis B. Mayer 1926
Irving G. Thalberg, Lillian Gish, Louis B. Mayer 1926

 

Italian postcard, no. 22. Publicity still for The Scarlet Letter (Victor Sjöström, 1926)

WouId you want to be a star—If you knew that you never could laugh?

If you had to go through life with cross-eyes?

If it cost you the love of your husband or wife ?

If you might have to pay for fame with your life ?

Oddly enough, Lillian Gish’s regime is like Mae Murray’s. Lillian has less real fun than any girl in the world. Although somewhere around the age of thirty, Lillian is constantly chaperoned. Lillian’s public demands a nun like idol. And Lillian lives up to this ideal with amazing consistency.

 

Lillian cannot marry. No one wants to think of her as a domestic little wife.

George Jean Nathan Chateau Du Plessis France 22
George Jean Nathan and Lillian Gish at Chateau Du Plessis – France 1922

Lillian cannot eat in public; she might spoil the illusion.

Lillian Gish and Mary Pickford
Lillian Gish and Mary Pickford

Lillian cannot wear gay clothes, flirt, dance, or lose her temper. Lillian’s life is divided between the studio and her home. At the studio she works hard and there is seldom any joking or laughing on her set.

Lillian Gish - with Hupmobile car
Lillian Gish – with Hupmobile car

When she goes home, she rides in a curtained limousine with her chaperon. At home, she reads stories and scripts and sits with her invalid mother.

1937-LILLIAN-GISH-Famed-Film-Actress-Mother

And all around her the lesser players of Hollywood dance, flirt, fall in love, have children and enjoy themselves.

Lillian Gish in Scarlet Letter - Vanity Fair Magazine August 1926
Lillian Gish in Scarlet Letter – Vanity Fair Magazine August 1926
Photoplay (Nov 1926) The Price they paid
Photoplay (Nov 1926) The Price they paid

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