Elsa Lanchester Elsa Lanchester, Herself

ISBN 13: 9780312243760

Elsa Lanchester, Herself

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9780312243760: Elsa Lanchester, Herself

Being known as “The Bride of Frankenstein” is an unusual form of fame, but for Elsa Lanchester the unusual came naturally. Born to radical socialist parents who made civil disobedience a way of life, Elsa attended an all-boys school and later “studied” in Paris with dance pioneer Isadora Duncan. She returned to London at age 13 to dance and give lessons in the new style; at 17, she opened her own theater, The Cave of Harmony, which was frequented by writers such as H. G. Wells, Aldous Huxley, and Evelyn Waugh. She began performing with and then fell in love with a brilliant young actor named Charles Laughton. Soon after their marriage he revealed his homosexuality. Though it made their union shaky at times, it did not overshadow their common love of art, music, and nature, and their marriage endured for 36 years until Laughton’s death.
            Elsa and Charles were paired in many plays, including Peter Pan and The Tempest. They began to appear in films and soon Hollywood beckoned. After making two films for MGM, Elsa was loaned to Universal Studios in 1935 for the role that would win her the most enduring fame: The Bride of Frankenstein.
            Elsa Lanchester, Herself presents the story of a woman ahead of her time: independent, iconoclastic, liberated. It is the chronicle of a life filled with famous people (from Bertolt Brecht to Henry Fonda), and of a career that spanned almost seven decades. It is also a warm, truthful account of a very special marriage. Witty and wise, Elsa Lanchester’s account of her life and times is a delight.

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About the Author:

While best known as the Bride of Frankenstein, Elsa Lanchester (1902–1986) also played Anne of Cleves in The Private Life of Henry VIII, and was twice nominated for the Academy Awards as Best Supporting Actress. She played Katie Nanna in Mary Poppins and was unforgettable as the eccentric painter in The Big Clock and the British cleaning lady who tries to kill Hitler in Passport to Destiny. She also had an extremely distinguished stage career. Mara Wilson is an actor, playwright, and author of Where Am I Now?

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Elsa Lanchester
Published by St Martins Pr (1983)
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