Deanna Durbin

Deanna Durbin

As a young girl, she broke her left arm and it didn't heal very well, so she wasn't able to extend it as far as her right arm.

By twenty-one, she was the highest-paid woman in the United States and highest-paid female film star in the World.

Daughter, Jessica Louise Jackson, born on February 7, 1946.

Deanna Durbin dolls existed along with many other types of merchandising in the 1940s.

Has an older sister, Edith, a teacher.

In 1941, Italian fascist dictator Benito Mussolini published an open letter to Durbin in his official newspaper, "Il Popolo", asking her to intercede with President Franklin D. Roosevelt on behalf of American youth to dissuade him from becoming involved in Word War II. She didn't.

In 1980, she submitted a recent photo of herself to Life Magazine in order to silence rumors she was overweight

In Italy, all her films were dubbed by either Rosetta Calavetta or Lidia Simoneschi.

Salary for 1939, $195,000.

She was Holocaust victim Anne Frank's favorite movie star. There are two pictures of Durbin on Anne's "Movie Wall" in the secret annex in Amsterdam where Frank and her family hid from the Nazis.

She was Prime Minister Winston Churchill's favorite movie star. He reportedly insisted that he be permitted to screen her films privately before they were released to the public in Britain, and would often screen her film One Hundred Men and a Girl (1937) to celebrate British victories during World War II. He considered her "a formidable talent."

She was sought for the female leads of the original Broadway productions of both Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II's "Oklahoma!" (1943) and Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe's "My Fair Lady" (1956). Universal refused to loan her for Oklahoma! and she turned down the lead in My Fair Lady (after Lerner personally came to her home to audition the songs for her) because, as she said later, "I had my ticket for Paris in my pocket."

She was the number one female box office star in Britain for the years 1939- 1942 inclusive. She was so popular that in 1942 a seven day "Deanna Durbin Festival" was held during which her films were screened exclusively on the Odeon Theatre Circuit throughout Britain, a feat that has never been duplicated for any other star. According to reports from the BBC over the past three decades, it receives more requests from the public for Durbin's films and recordings, than for those of any other star of Hollywood's Golden Age.

Son, Peter David born on June 20, 1951.

Tried for the voice of Snow White in Walt Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937) but Disney himself rejected her, claiming she sounded "too mature." She was 14 at the time.

Universal Pictures top star in the 1940s where she was paid $400,000 per film. She is reported as the star who saved the company.

Was an option to play Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz (1939).

Was given a special Juvenile Oscar in 1938.

When the reign of Universal's founder Carl Laemmle ended abruptly in the Spring of 1936, the new studio head, Charles R. Rogers quickly signed the 15-year old when producer Joe Pasternak told him her MGM contract had expired. Deanna rapidly became 'New Universal's' biggest star. She literally single-handedly saved the studio from bankruptcy in the last years of the 1930s.