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Today In History: May 10th, 1977

Photo Credits: Bettmann/Getty Images & Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images
Photo Credits: Bettmann/Getty Images & Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images

Hollywood Icon Joan Crawford Passes Away

On May 10, 1977, the world bid farewell to one of Hollywood’s most enduring stars as Joan Crawford passed away in New York City, USA. Known for her captivating performances and formidable presence on screen, Crawford’s legacy extends far beyond her illustrious filmography. Born Lucille Fay LeSueur on March 23, 190?, in San Antonio, Texas, Crawford rose to prominence during the Golden Age of cinema, captivating audiences with her talent and charisma.

Crawford’s career spanned over five decades, earning her numerous accolades and recognition. She received an Academy Award for Best Actress for her role in Mildred Pierce in 1946 and was nominated for three additional Oscars throughout her career. Crawford’s dedication to her craft and her ability to portray complex and compelling characters solidified her status as one of Hollywood’s leading actresses.

joan crawford dressed in character on set of Mildred Pierce
circa 1944: American film actress Joan Crawford wearing a patterned blouse worn high to expose her midriff at the time of her starring role in ‘Mildred Pierce’, for which she won an Academy Award. (Photo Credit: Bert Six/John Kobal Foundation/Getty Images)

Throughout her life, Crawford’s relationships, particularly with her family and children, garnered significant attention. Adopting four children, including Christina and Christopher, Crawford’s motherhood journey was marred by controversy and speculation, fueled by Christina’s scathing memoir, Mommie Dearest, which portrayed Crawford as a cruel and abusive parent. Despite the tumultuous nature of their relationship, Crawford’s devotion to her children remained a central aspect of her life.

Crawford’s rivalry with fellow actress Bette Davis added another layer of intrigue to her storied career. The feud between the two Hollywood legends reached its peak during the filming of What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? in 1962, where their on-screen animosity mirrored their off-screen tensions. Despite their differences, Crawford and Davis delivered powerhouse performances, solidifying their places in cinematic history.

More from us: Joan Crawford Bought Her Children From a ‘Baby Broker’

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Leading up to her death, Crawford’s health had been in decline, exacerbated by years of heavy smoking and drinking. On May 10th, Crawford died of a heart attack in her apartment in Lenox Hill, NYC. In her will, Crawford famously disinherited her two eldest children, Christina and Christopher, leaving the majority of her estate to her two youngest children and various charitable organizations. While her passing marked the end of an era in Hollywood, Joan Crawford’s indelible mark on the entertainment industry continues to be felt to this day.

TVN News Poster

TVN News Poster is one of the authors writing for The Vintage News