|Helen Hayes Biography||
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Helen Hayes (October 10, 1900 – March 17, 1993) was a two-time Academy Awards-winning American actress whose successful and award-winning career spanned almost 70 years. She was eventually to garner the nickname "First Lady of the American Theater", and was one of the nine people List of people who have won an Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar and a Tony Award. /b>
Hayes was born Helen Hayes Brown in Washington, D.C. to Francis W. Brown and Estella Catherine Hayes. Her maternal grandparents were immigrants from Ireland and England, respectively.http://worldconnect.rootsweb.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?op=GET&db=tdowling&id=I61694 Hayes began a stage career at an early age. By 10, she had made a short film called Jean and the Calico Doll, but she only moved to Hollywood when her husband, playwright Charles MacArthur, signed a Hollywood deal. Her sound film debut was The Sin of Madelon Claudet, for which she won the Academy Award for Best Actress. She followed that with starring roles in Arrowsmith (movie) (with Myrna Loy), A Farewell to Arms (with actor Gary Cooper whom Hayes admitted to finding extremely attractive), The White Sister, What Every Woman Knows (a reprise from her Broadway hit), and Vanessa: Her Love Story. However, she never became a fan favorite and Hayes did not prefer the medium to the stage.
Return to Broadway
Hayes and MacArthur eventually returned to Broadway theatre, and she starred for three years in Victoria Regina. In the 1950s, the Fulton Theatre was renamed for her. However, business interests in the 1980s wished to raze that theatre and four others to construct a large hotel that included the Marquis Theatre. To accomplish razing this theatre and three others, as well as the Astor Hotel, the business interests received Hayes consent to raze the theatre named for her, even though she had no ownership interest in the buildings. As a result in 1983, the Little Theater on West 45th Street was re-named Helen Hayes Theatre in her honor. In 1953 she was the first-ever recipient of the Sarah Siddons Award for her work in Chicago theatre, repeating as the winner in 1969. She returned to Hollywood in the 1950s, and her film star began to rise. She starred in My Son John and Anastasia (1956 movie), and won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress in 1970 for Airport (movie). She followed that up with several roles in The Walt Disney Company films such as Herbie Rides Again, One of Our Dinosaurs is Missing and Candleshoe. "Anastasia" was considered a comeback having not acted for several years due to her daughter, Mary's death and her husband's failing health. Hayes wrote three memoirs: A Gift of Joy, On Reflection and My Life in Three Acts. Some of the themes in these books include her return to Roman Catholicism after having been denied communion from the Church for the length of her marriage to MacArthur, who was a Protestant and a divorce, and the death of her only daughter, Mary, who was an aspiring actress, from polio. Hayes's son, James MacArthur, went on to a career in acting also, starring in Hawaii Five-O on television. Hayes was a pro-business Republican, who attended the last Republican National Convention before her death, which was held in Colorado, but she was not as far-right as certain others (e.g. Adolphe Menjou, Ginger Rogers, John Wayne, etc) in the Hollywood community of that time. She has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6220 Hollywood Blvd. The Helen Hayes Award for theater in the Washington D.C. area is named in her honor. Helen Hayes died on (St. Patrick's Day) March 17, 1993 from congestive heart failure, aged 92, not long after the death of her friend Lillian Gish, with whom she had been friends for many decades. Gish made Hayes the beneficiary of her estate, but Hayes only survived her by a month. Helen Hayes was interred in the Oak Hill Cemetery, Nyack, New York.
Courtesy of: http://www.wikipedia.org/