Beverly Bayne

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Beverly Bayne
Beverly Bayne (Essanay).jpg
Born Pearl Beverly Bain
(1894-11-11)November 11, 1894
Minneapolis, Minnesota, U.S.
Died August 18, 1982(1982-08-18) (aged 87)
Scottsdale, Arizona, U.S.
Occupation Stage, film actress
Years active 1912-1951
Spouse(s) Francis X. Bushman (1918-1925) (divorced) (1 son)
Charles T. Hvass (1937-1944) (divorced)

Beverly Bayne (born Pearl Beverly Bain) (November 11, 1894 – August 18, 1982) was an American actress who appeared in silent films beginning in 1910 in Chicago, Illinois, where she worked for Essanay Studios.

Early life[edit]

Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, she moved to Chicago when she was six. She stayed there for a time, and in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, before she settled in Chicago. She was sixteen when by curiosity she happened by the Essanay Studios. She was told she had a camera face. She began working there at a salary of $35/week. It was soon increased to $75 a week. In a few years the actress was earning $350 weekly.

Film career[edit]

Her first films were The Rivals and The Loan Shark, both in 1912. She played the feminine lead in the latter. Under contract to Essanay at this time was Gloria Swanson. It is said that Swanson wept because her eyes were blue and not brown as were Bayne's. Brown eyes were considered preferable for photography then. Other actors on the lot were Wallace Beery, Charlie Chaplin, and Francis X. Bushman. Bushman demanded Beverly as his female lead, and soon they were a romantic duo, appearing in twenty-four films. Their first film together was Pennington's Choice (1915). In 1917 the couple made Romeo and Juliet, which generated a sizeable profit. Bushman and Bayne were married in 1918.

Bayne and Bushman left Essanay and made films for Metro Pictures from 1916–1918 and are credited as the first romantic team in film. In 1920 the couple starred in a play, The Master Thief, which did well. Later they appeared in vaudeville and as guest stars in dramatic stock.

Eventually the two drifted apart. Bayne and Bushman divorced in 1924, and her career went into decline after that. Soon both she and Bushman were out of motion pictures. On reflecting, Bushman believed their demise in films was caused by a new valet who inadvertently snubbed Louis B. Mayer. The movie mogul had called on him during a personal appearance tour. Others contend that the Hollywood establishment disapproved of Bushman divorcing his wife and marrying the much younger Bayne.

Her final silent film was Passionate Youth in 1925. Unable to make a comeback, she worked on stage productions and on Broadway throughout the 1930s and 1940s. During the early 1940s, Miss Bayne performed in radio and did an occasional play. During World War II her serious work involved British War Relief.

Her only sound film was The Naked City (1948) with Barry Fitzgerald and Howard Duff. It was also her last film.

Partial filmography[edit]

Later years[edit]

She retired from performing completely in 1950 and settled in Scottsdale, Arizona, where she died from a heart attack in 1982 at the age of 87.

References[edit]

  • The First Female Stars: Women of the Silent Era by David W. Menefee. Connecticut: Praeger, 2004. ISBN 0-275-98259-9.
  • Oakland, California Tribune, Beverly Bayne Is Still Active, Sunday, September 7, 1941, Page 107.
  • Francis X. Bushman A Biography and Filmography. By Richard Maturi and Mary Buckingham Maturi. Jefferson, NC.: McFarland & Company, Inc., 1998.
  • Beverly Bayne, Queen of the Movies. By Richard Maturi and Mary Buckingham Maturi. Jefferson, NC.: McFarland & Company, Inc., 2001.

External links[edit]