Southern Belle

Southern Belle

Dorothy Sebastian had young, ambition. She wanted to become a star, more than anything in the world. But, her parents frowned upon her celebrity, cravings. At 15, Dorothy ran away from Alabama, to NYC with nothing but moxie and a few dollars. Her arrival in NYC wasn’t what she instant stardom, for Dorothy..agents and directors thought her southern drawl, was thick enough to cut with a knife. So, Dorothy changed it, by taking elocution classes. Sebastian would spend her days following around theatrical agents.. I told you she had ambition.., but they kept rejecting her. In 1924, Dorothy finally got a break and took a job as chorus girl in, “George White’s Scandal’s of 1924”. Fellow chorus girlfriend, Louise Brooks was alongside Dorothy, they began crashing parties for producers and ingenues. It paid off .. At one of these shindigs, Dorothy was being adored by a British cabinet Lord at the Ritz Hotel, in an apartment owned by producer Otto Kahn, at which several Scandals girls and Hollywood producers were present. The end result was an MGM contract for Dorothy. So she used some very rich, very powerful men to get her dream..not a unique story, but certainly scandalous, at the time. In Hollywood, Dorothy worked with many famous actors and actresses and others that were up and Greta Garbo, Joan Crawford, Anita Page, John Gilbert, Lionel Barrymore, Douglas Fairbanks Jr, Robert Montgomery, and of course, Buster Keaton. Dorothy and Buster starred in “Spite Marriages” and despite marriage, the two had an affair. Dorothy grabbed headlines, not for acting but for acting out..for instance: one night after a romp at Buster’s abode, Sebastian was charged with drunk driving. She was married (guess!) 3 times and her divorce from “Hop-a-long Cassidy”, was highly publicized. Her MGM contract had expired and they didn’t renew. Dorothy made some “poverty row” movies, through the late ’30s – 40’s, but ended up retiring, when she fell ill. Dorothy Sebastian died of cancer in 1957, only 53 years old. Dorothy reached for the stars and hung on to them, hard. For her dedication, her star is on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.


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