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Florence Lawrence, the Biograph Girl: America's First Movie Star
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Florence Lawrence, the Biograph Girl: America's First Movie Star

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4.02  ·  Rating details ·  41 ratings  ·  8 reviews
Florence Lawrence's film career began just as the cinema was being born. She recognized the wonder and appeal of the fledgling industry, and her early work with the Vitagraph company gained her a legion of fans and a reputation as a willing and hard working actress. In 1908 she appeared in Romeo and Juliet--America's very first screen Juliet. By 1909, she was working ...more
Paperback, 216 pages
Published March 20th 2007 by McFarland & Company (first published 1999)
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Average rating 4.02  · 
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Graceann
Jul 27, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: silent film buffs
Recommended to Graceann by: jenny paxson, the DONs
Shelves: biography
In the interest of full disclosure, I must tell you that Kelly Brown is a friend of mine. I bought the book before we were friends, and it is with an *immense* sense of relief that I tell you I loved the way it was written.

Florence Lawrence was the first movie star, and it's not too much hyperbole to draw a line from people wondering about the name of "The Biograph Girl," to the interest in the private lives of today's celebrities. Given the relatively tiny amount of information available to
...more
Heath Alberts
May 24, 2015 rated it really liked it
I'm not normally a fan of biographies. That being said, I had never heard of Florence, and when I was watching a documentary series on film making, her name came up as something of a 'lost and forgotten chapter'. This piqued my interest enough to hunt down the book.

For me, the work was rote and dry. Except, it's a biography, so it sort of has to be. I gave the book a high rating not so much on its readability, but based on the fact that the author has done so much painstaking research, and then
...more
Cheryl Powell
Nov 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I became interested in Florence Lawrence when I read somewhere that Roddy McDowall had paid to have a headstone placed on her unmarked grave. The headstone stated that she was the "first movie star," and yet, I had never heard of her. Recently, I read Mary Pickford: The Woman Who Made Hollywood, which again made reference to Florence's story. So, I sought out Kelly Brown's book on "The Biograph Girl." Brown gathers every scrap of information available on Florence Lawrence and manages to piece ...more
Hala Pickford
Apr 03, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: starlets
A pretty well researched biography on dear forgotten Florence. My only complaint is though the prose isn’t bad it really doesn’t draw you in. Florence’s story is so sad but by the end of it I was like ‘meh whats for dinner?’ I am not a fan of death obsessing but the final chapter covering Florence and her decision to end her life seemed way too simple and matter of fact…very little explanation behind ‘this happened, that happened’. Another one needs to be written me thinks. One other problem: I ...more
Audrey
May 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: film-history
I'm torn on this one because it was a little frustrating to read at times. The author clearly did extensive research, but in the end, it seems like there wasn't quite enough of Lawrence's self or personality present in the evidence she found. There was, however, a lot of conflicting information, and all of it was presented. I was absolutely wowed by the notes and bibliography. There was certainly not a single stone unturned. There are long sections where there is much more contextualizing ...more
Jenny
Jun 11, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: anyone interesting in the history of movies.
An excellent biography of one of the first real stars of American cinema. Little was known about Lawrence before and Kelly Brown has done an excellent job of uncovering and reporting her story.
Greta
Aug 22, 2008 rated it really liked it
Good, well researched book on an elusive subject. Notes all the contradictions in the stories, doesn’t go on wild speculations. Good filmography
Donna
Aug 21, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Any film buff worth their salt needs to read this book. If you love silent film and early film history, this is a wonderful book to read. In fact I need to re-read it!
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