Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Fay Wray

Fay Wray was born September 15, 1907 in Alberta Canada.

She is regarded as Hollywood's first "scream queen" originating from her appearances in the 1932 film Doctor X and the 1933 film King Kong.

She was barely in her teens when she started working as an extra. She began her career as a heroine in westerns at Universal during the silent era. Her first appearance was in Blind Husbands (1919).

Wray gained media attention when she was selected as one of the WAMPAS Baby Stars in 1926 with Joan Crawford, Dolores Del Rio, Mary Astor and Janet Ganyor. This resulted in a contract at Paramount Pictures.

In 1928, director Erich von Stoheim cast Wray as the main female lead in his troubled production of The Wedding March.

However, she is best remembered for her role as Ann Darrow, the blonde captive of the gigantic gorilla in the classic King Kong (1933). She wore a blonde wig over her naturally dark hair for the role. Fay was approached by producer Merian C. Cooper, who told her that he had a part for her in a picture in which she would be working with a tall, dark leading man. What he didn't tell her was that her "tall, dark leading man" was a giant gorilla.

Wray died in her sleep on August 8, 2004, in her Manhattan apartment of natural causes She was 96 years old, only 38 days shy of her 97th birthday.

After her death was announced the lights on the Empire State Building were extinguished for 15 minutes in her memory.

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