(Photo from Life Magazine, February 1980)
Hey, Pola! Why the long face?
Could it be the fact that:
1. You grew up in extreme poverty, your father was sent to Siberia and your dancing career was cut short by tuberculosis?
2. You 'fainted' at Rudy Valentino's funeral, only to have the whole world laugh at you?
3. You were badmouthed by none other than Talullah Bankhead, falsely accused of an affair with none other than Adolf Hitler and rumoured to have had an affair with none other than MILTON BERLE?
4. After being forced to flee Germany, you were detained on Ellis Island?
5. The Hays Code banned your "scenes of passion" and "excessive and lustful kissing" (thus leaving you nothing to work with)?
6. You took the offer to play Norma Desmond as a personal affront and 'threw a tantrum at the mere suggestion of playing a has-been'? (I know, Pola, beats me why they approached you as well..)
7. While you were once one of the richest women in Hollywood and lived in a palace modelled on The White House, you lost everything in the Wall Street Crash?
8. You once appeared in a movie called Hi Diddle Diddle?
9. You were not necessarily the accomplished organist that the studios made you out to be?
10.Your real name was Barbara?
Hey, chin up, Pola! Look on the bright side! Life Magazine credits you with unleashing the fashion statement of boots and turbans on an unsuspecting world! And, if for nothing more than that, you deserve our undying adulation. More boots and turbans, as I always say!
Pola Negri - we salute you! You and that lovely, long face of yours!