Thursday, May 2, 2013

Dead Brit in L.A. Week: "The Westerner" Actress Lilian Bond 1991 Hollywood Forever Cemetery


Lilian Bond (January 18, 1908 – January 25, 1991) was a British film actress of the late 1920s to the 1940s.


Life and career

Bond was born in London and made her first public appearance at the age of fourteen when she was in the pantomime, Dick Whittington. Later she joined the chorus of Piccadilly Revels and continued on the stage when she went to America. She began her film career in the 1929 film No More Children. Between 1929 and 1931 she starred in nine films, most notably the 1931 western Rider of the Plains opposite Tom Tyler. In 1932 she was named a WAMPAS Baby Star, alongside future Hollywood legends Gloria Stuart and Ginger Rogers. From 1932 to 1953, she would have roles in 39 films, some of which were uncredited, with others having her in the lead heroine role.


Bond played Gladys DuCane in The Old Dark House, a chorus girl who falls in love with Roger Penderel (played by Melvyn Douglas). Possibly her best-known film role was in the 1940 film The Westerner, in which she played legendary stage actress Lillie Langtry, and which starred Gary Cooper, Walter Brennan and Doris Davenport.


By the 1950s her career had declined, with her having mostly television series appearances. She retired from acting at the age of 50 in 1958.



Personal life

She was married three times, her first marriage being at the height of her career, to Sidney Smith. She married Smith in 1935, and the two divorced in 1944. Lilian went on to marry Michael Fessier, a successful writer and producer in 1961. The two remained married until his death in 1988.


Death

She died in 1991, aged 83, from a heart attack, in the care home she lived in Reseda, California, USA. She is buried at Hollywood Forever Cemetery.




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