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Kay Francis 1930s movie star

Kay Francis 1930s movie star (January 13, 1905 – August 26, 1968)

Kay Francis 1930s movie star (January 13, 1905 – August 26, 1968)

Kay Francis 1930s movie star
From 1930 to 1936 Kay Francis was the most popular actress at the Warner Brothers studio and the highest-paid American film actress. For comparison: the stars of MGM at the time were Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire, on Studio Columbia Pictures – Clark Gable, Claudette Colbert, and the Paramount-Marlene Dietrich. However, Kay was more popular than any of them. Kay Francis was born on January 13, 1905. After a brief period on Broadway in the late 1920s, she moved to film and achieved her greatest success between 1930 and 1936, when she was the number one female star.

1930 publicity photo for the movie 'Behind the Make-Up'

1930 publicity photo for the movie ‘Behind the Make-Up’

At age 17, Kay became engaged to James Dwight Francis. Their December 1922 marriage at New York’s Saint Thomas Church ended in divorce in 1924. Her second husband was William Gaston, a former Harvard athlete and member of the Boston Bar Association, Bill Gaston. She had married writer-director John Meehan in New York, but soon after her arrival in Hollywood, she consummated an affair with actor and producer Kenneth MacKenna, whom she married in January 1931. When MacKenna’s Hollywood career foundered, he found himself spending more time in New York, and they divorced in 1934. Baron Raven Erik Barnekow married Kay Francis in 1939. The year of divorce is unknown. Francis married five times. Her diaries paint a picture of a woman whose personal life was often in disarray.

Allotment Wives (1945)

Allotment Wives (1945)

In 1966, Francis was diagnosed with breast cancer. Having no living immediate family members, Francis left more than $1,000,000 to Seeing Eye, Inc., which trained guide dogs for the blind. She died in the summer of 1968 and her body was immediately cremated; her ashes were scattered.

Kay Francis 1930's movie star

Gorgeous Kay Francis

Kay Francis 1930s movie star

sources of images
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