Pola Negri

1897 - 1987

Pola Negri was born in Lipno, Poland, and moved to Warsaw as a child. Living in poverty with her mother, a teenage Pola auditioned and was accepted to the Imperial Ballet. Due to an illness that ended her dancing career, she soon switched to the Warsaw Imperial Academy of Dramatic Arts and became an actress. By 17 she was a star on the Warsaw stage, but World War I would soon change the theater scene. Without the theater, Pola turned to films. With her new career in pictures and her stage success in "Sumurun", she went to Berlin and was teamed with German director Ernst Lubitsch. The Lubitsch-Negri combination was very successful and the roles that Pola played were earthy, exotic, strong women. One of her films, Madame DuBarry (1919), was optioned and retitled "Passion" for exhibition in America. The film was such a success that by 1922 she and Lubitsch were both given contracts to work in Hollywood. While her first few films showed some success, they were overshadowed by her reported

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