Possessed: The Life of Joan Crawford

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9780061856006: Possessed: The Life of Joan Crawford

'I've been protected by studio publicity men most of my life, so in some ways I'm a goddam image, not a person. I was a commodity, a piece of property... I felt an overwhelming obligation to my career, and so I was an actress first, a wife second. I worked almost constantly, and even when I wasn't working, there was that image thing of looking like a star, conducting myself like a star. I just went ahead like a bulldozer. I was a very selfish woman.'

Joan Crawford was a complex, contradictory, driven human being, but not the alcoholic, sadistic monster depicted in the notorious book, Mommie Dearest, which appeared a year after her death.

In some ways, Donald Spoto's Possessed is the ultimate Hollywood book - about a young woman, poor, abandoned by her father, but determined at all costs to succeed . Born in Texas, Lucille Fay LeSueur escaped destitution by becoming a popular dancer and then managed to make the decisive leap that transformed her into a luminous, unique star of the screen. She became Joan Crawford.

There were many important men in her life, not least Clark Gable, with whom she appeared in eight pictures and with whom she conducted a thirty-year affair. She was married four times, once to the debonair Douglas Fairbanks Jr, unaware that he had failed to discontinue his relationship with Marlene Dietrich.

Dancer, dramatic actress, businesswoman, corporate executive with Pepsi-Cola, Joan Crawford during her lifetime (1906 - 1977) was rarely out of the news. With the use of only recently opened archives and personal papers, Donald Spoto probes behind the lurid headlines to bring us Joan Crawford, the private person as well as the movie legend.

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Book Description:

The incredible story of a Hollywood legend

From the Back Cover:

Joan Crawford was a complex, contradictory, driven human being, but not the alcoholic, sadistic monster depicted in the notorious book, Mommie Dearest, which appeared a year after her death.

This book tells the real story of a young woman, poor, abandoned by her father, but determined at all costs to succeed. Born in Texas, Lucille Fay LeSueur escaped destitution by becoming a popular dancer and then managed to make the decisive leap that transformed her into a luminous, unique star of the screen: she became Joan Crawford.

Dancer, dramatic actress, businesswoman, corporate executive with Pepsi-Cola, Joan Crawford was rarely out of the news. With the use of only recently opened archives and personal papers, Donald Spoto probes behind the lurid headlines to bring us Joan Crawford, the private person as well as the movie legend.

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Book Description William Morrow, 2010. Book Condition: New. Brand New, Unread Copy in Perfect Condition. A+ Customer Service! Summary: Joan Crawford was one of the most incandescent film stars of all time, yet she was also one of the most misunderstood. In this brilliantly researched, thoughtful, and intimate biography, bestselling author Donald Spoto goes beyond the popular caricature-the abusive, unstable mother portrayed in her adopted daughter Christina Crawford's memoir, Mommie Dearest-to give us a three-dimensional portrait of a very human woman, her dazzling career, and her extraordinarily dramatic life and times.Based on new archival information and exclusive interviews, and written with Spoto's keen eye for detail, Possessed offers a fascinating portrait of a courageous, highly sexed, and ambitious woman whose strength and drive made her a forerunner in the fledgling film business. From her hardscrabble childhood in Texas to her early days as a dancer in post-World War I New York to her rise to stardom, Spoto traces Crawford's fifty years of memorable performances in classics like Rain, The Women, Mildred Pierce, and Sudden Fear, which are as startling and vivid today as when they were filmed.In Possessed, Spoto goes behind the myths to examine the rise and fall of the studio system; Crawford's four marriages; her passionate thirty year, on-and-off-again affair with Clark Gable; her friendships and rivalries with other stars; her powerful desire to become a mother; the truth behind the scathing stories in her daughter Christina's memoir; and her final years as a widow battling cancer. Spoto explores Crawford's achievements as an actress, her work with Hollywood's great directors (Frank Borzage, George Cukor, Otto Preminger) and actors (Henry Fonda, James Stewart, Spencer Tracy, John Barrymore), and later, her role as a highly effective executive on the board of directors of Pepsi-Cola.Illuminating and entertaining, Possessed is the definitive biography of this remarkable woman and true legend of film. Bookseller Inventory # ABE_book_new_0061856002

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