Bebe Daniels

Bebe Daniels
Los Angeles Times


Bebe Daniels
Film: East side of the 1700 block of Vine Street
Actress | Screenwriter | Singer
Born Phyllis Daniels on Jan. 14, 1901 in Dallas, Texas
Died March 16, 1971 of cerebral hemorrhage in London, United Kingdom

Bebe Daniels was a silent screen comedic sensation, who seamlessly transitioned into talkies to become one of the darlings of musical comedies of the 1930s.

Daniels' charisma, gorgeous singing voice and dramatic skill helped her move easily from silent films to talkies, making her a musical and dramatic star, most notably in "Rio Rita" (1929), costarring John Boles; Lloyd Bacon's "42nd Street" (1933); Roy Del Ruth's "The Maltese Falcon" (1931); the Irving Berlin vehicle "Reaching for the Moon" (1931), costarring Douglas Fairbanks; and "Counsellor at Law" (1933), costarring John Barrymore.

Some of Daniels' most memorable work was as Harold Lloyd's leading lady in the "Lonesome Luke" silent shorts, where she honed her comedic skills and screenwriting in many two-reel films, preparing her for success when Cecil B. DeMille chose to direct her in "Male and Female" (1919) and "Why Change Your Wife?" (1920). From the 1910s through the 1960s she acted in more than 200 roles in film and television.

Daniels' personal and professional life were linked to Hollywood from the start. Her mother was a casting director who introduced Daniels to the stage. Her second cousin was Lee De Forest, the "father of sound," one of the most important inventors of radio and sound technology. Even her personal mischief was parodied on-screen in "The Speed Girl" (1921), based on Daniels' 10-day jail stint for unpaid speeding tickets.

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