Gloria Swanson (March 27, 1899 April 4, 1983) was an American actress, singer and producer, who is best known for her role as Norma Desmond, a faded silent film star, in the critically acclaimed film Sunset Boulevard (1950). She was one of the most prominent stars during the silent film era as both an actress and a fashion icon, especially under the direction of Cecil B. DeMille, made dozens of silents and was nominated for the first Academy Award in the Best Actress category. She had also produced her own films such as the controversial Sadie Thompson and The Love of Sunya. In 1929, Swanson successfully transitioned to talkies with The Trespasser. However, personal problems and changing tastes saw her popularity wane during the 1930s when she moved into theater and television. Gloria Josephine May Swanson was born in a small house in Chicago, Illinois in 1899 to Adelaide (ne Klanowski) and Joseph Theodore Swanson, a soldier. She attended Hawthorne Scholastic Academy.
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