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A depressing thought


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I just watched three movies in the Race and Hollywood series back to back to back.

First, there was "Bright Road," which starred the exquisite Dorothy Dandridge opposite Harry Belafonte. Then Belafonte teamed with the gorgeous Inger Stevens and Mel Ferrer in the post-atomic disaster drama "The World, the Flesh and the Devil." Next up was "A Patch of Blue," the Academy Award winning drama that starred Sidney Poitier, Shelley Winters and the unforgettable Elizabeth Hartman.

I don't know exactly when it hit me, but I suddenly realized that the lead actresses -- Miss Dandridge, Miss Stevens and Miss Hartman -- all died by suicide. What are the odds of that happening?

Thank goodness, we can always admire their performances on film and appreciate what they were like at the peaks of their careers.

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You're right. Dandridge, Stevens and Hartman all had suicide in common. And none of them lived to be much older than 40. Prior to her death Dandridge had financial problems, I think she took bankrupcy. Can anyone expand on that a little?

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Apparently, Dandridge's second husband, the white dude who owned a night club, took over her management and lost her money. It was commonplace in those days for female stars, large wage earners, to entrust their careers to their husbands, most of whom knew nothing about management, I believe because of the stigma that existed against women who out-earned their husbands. Dandridge had been paying to keep her daughter by Harold Nicholas in a nice place where she was well cared for, and when she could no longer pay the freight her daughter was sent to her (alone) and literally dumped on her doorstep. All this could easily contribute to sending a person over the edge.


Actually, her career was on the upswing at the time of her death, raising speculation of whether it was accident or suicide.



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Thanks, Bill!


I've been a fan of Dorothy Dandridge ever since I first saw CARMEN JONES several years ago. I wish that she had had more substantial roles in films--she was a real talent. I saw the Dandridge bio-pic, Introducing Dorothy Dandridge, a few years ago and in that film her death was portrayed as accidental. I have the Donald Bogle biography of her around somewhere, but I haven't read it--now I will dig it out! If I can find it, LOL!


I'm kicking myself for forgetting to record BRIGHT ROAD the other night!


Sandy K

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