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Famous Like Me > Actress > T > Florence Turner

Profile of Florence Turner on Famous Like Me

Name: Florence Turner  
Also Know As:
Date of Birth: 6th January 1885
Place of Birth: New York, New York, USA
Profession: Actress
From Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia
Florence Turner

Florence Turner (January 6, 1885 – August 28, 1946) was an American actress, who became known as the "Vitagraph Girl" in early silent movies.

Born in New York, New York, she was pushed into appearing on the stage at age three by her ambitious mother. Turner became a regular performer in a variety of productions.

In 1906, she joined the fledgling motion picture business, signing with the pioneering Vitagraph Studios. Turner made her debut in Cast Up by the Sea (1907).

At the time, there were no stars in movies. Performers were not even mentioned by name. Long, drawn out screen credits were not thought of. There was nothing but the name of the company and the picture. As the content of movies evolved from simple incidents, or situations, into definite stories, some of the heros and heroines were conceded a vague identity, such as the "Edison Girl," et cetera.

Though she was known only as the "Vitagraph Girl" in the early motion picture shorts, Turner became one of the most popular stars to appear on screen, particularly with several leading roles opposite heartthrob Wallace Reid. Sometimes credited as "Baby Twinkles," over the years she worked with other great stars of the day, including Buster Keaton and Florence Lawrence.

As the demand for identification grew, within a few years she was famous as Florence Turner. In 1913, she left the United States accompanied by longtime friend Laurence Trimble, who directed her in a number of movies, and moved to England, where she and Larry began performing together in London music halls.

She sometimes wrote screenplays and directed her own movies, including a number of comedies. She also organized her own production company, Turner Films, becoming the first star of the silver screen to do so. She made more than thirty shorts. In 1915, she was the top box-office star.

Turner entertained Allied troops during World War I. She returned to the U.S. after the Armistice, but was not as successful as before. In 1920, she again went to England, where she remained until moving to Hollywood in 1924.

By then, she was thirty-nine years of age and, in this era of youth and great glamour consciousness, her starring days were long behind her. She went on to play secondary roles when she was able to find work.

In 1928, she acted in a minor role on Broadway in Sign of the Leopard, which ran for thirty-nine performances.

Turner was placed on the payroll at MGM by Louis B. Mayer in the 1930s, but was limited in the assignments offered. She mostly played bit-parts and worked as an extra.

She later moved to the Motion Picture Country House, a retirement community for the industry in Woodland Hills, California.

After appearing in more than 160 motion pictures, Florence Turner died at age sixty-one in Woodland Hills, an almost forgotten figure. She was cremated at a mortuary in Hollywood and, at her request, there was no funeral service.

Selected filmography

  • Romance of a War Nurse (1908)
  • The Heart of a Clown (1909)
  • Uncle Tom's Cabin (1910)
  • Rose Leaves (1910)
  • Birds of a Feather (1911)
  • Aunty's Romance (1912)
  • Through the Valley of Shadows (1914)
  • Fool's Gold (1919)
  • Hornet's Nest (1923)
  • College (1926)
  • The Sign of the Cross (1932)
  • One Rainy Afternoon (1936)
  • Whisling in Brooklyn (1943)
  • Thousands Cheer (1944)

This content from Wikipedia is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Florence Turner