Lili Damita
Personal
Other names: Lily Damita, Lily Deslys
Job / Known for: actress and singer
Left traces: 33 films between 1922 and 1937
Born
Date: 1904-07-10
Location: FR Blaye, France
Died
Date: 1994-03-21 (aged 90)
Resting place: US
Death Cause: Alzheimer's disease
Family
Spouse: Errol Flynn (1935-1942), Allen Loomis (1962-1983)
Children: Sean Flynn (1941-1970)
Parent(s):
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Fullname

Lili Damita

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I don't want to be a star; I want to be an actress.
About me / Bio:
Lili Damita was a French-American actress and singer who appeared in 33 films between 1922 and 1937. She was born Liliane Marie-Madeleine Carré in Blaye, France, on 10 July 1904. Her father was an officer. She was educated in convents and ballet schools in her native France, as well as Spain and Portugal. At 14, she was enrolled as a dancer at the Opéra de Paris. She worked as a photographic model and won a beauty contest that led to her first film role in 1921. She became a leading lady in European silent films, working with directors such as Michael Curtiz, Robert Wiene, and G.W. Pabst. In 1928, she was invited to Hollywood by Samuel Goldwyn and made her American film debut in The Rescue. She appeared with stars and leading men such as Maurice Chevalier, Laurence Olivier, James Cagney, Gary Cooper and Cary Grant. Her films included box office successes The Cock-Eyed World (1929), the semi-silent The Bridge of San Luis Rey (1929) and This Is the Night (1932). She married unknown actor Errol Flynn in 1935 and retired from the screen. Flynn soon became one of Hollywood's biggest box office attractions, and they had a son, Sean Flynn, in 1941. The couple had an acrimonious divorce in 1942. According to Flynn's memoir My Wicked, Wicked Ways, Damita was unstable and violent throughout the tumultuous relationship. She is portrayed by Barbara Hershey in the TV film My Wicked, Wicked Ways (1985) based on Flynn's autobiography. While living in Palm Beach, Florida, Damita married Allen Loomis in 1962, a retired Fort Dodge, Iowa, dairy product manufacturer, and spent part of each year living there. They divorced in the mid-80s. During the Cambodian Civil War, her son Sean Flynn was working as a freelance photojournalist under contract to Time magazine when he and fellow journalist Dana Stone went missing on the road south of Phnom Penh, Cambodia, on 6 April 1970. Damita spent fourteen years and millions of dollars searching for him but he was never found. Sean Flynn was declared legally dead in 1984. Damita died of Alzheimer's disease on 21 March 1994 in Palm Beach, Florida, aged 89. She was buried at Oakland Cemetery in Fort Dodge, Iowa.
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