Deanna Durbin Dies: 1930's Hollywood Star Passed Away, Aged 91
Star was once one of the highest paid actresses in the movie business
Deanna Durbin, who was one of Hollywood's biggest draws in the 1930s and early '40s, has died aged 91.
In a glittering career, Durbin at one point became the highest-paid star in the US, in 1947, thanks to her huge bankability as an actress. She made her film debut in the 1936 MGM short Every Sunday, in which she appeared alongside the legendary Judy Garland, aged 15. From then on she rose as a star, having been signed by Universal Studios, and her first mega bucks role was Three Smart Girls, also in 1936 and credited with saving the studio from bankruptcy.
In many of her roles Durbin was portrayed as the perfect girl-next-door, however it was a role she eventually grew tired of as she matured from a teenager and she tried to take on more serious roles in 1944’s Christmas Holiday and the crime thriller Lady On A Train, from 1945. She retired from acting at a young age in 1949, aged just 28. She went on to withdraw from public life after marrying producer-director Charles Henri David in 1950. They stayed together for 48 years before his death in 1999. News of her death was announced by her son Peter H David, who revealed in a statement that she had died “a few days ago.”