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Betty Bronson

Betty Bronson (November 17, 1906 – October 19, 1971) was an American television and film actress who began her career during the silent film era. She was a famous actress in silent and sound films. She was born Elizabeth Ada Bronson in Trenton, New Jersey to Frank and Nellie Smith Bronson. She began her film career began at age of sixteen with a bit part in the film Anna Ascends. At seventeen, after she had pleaded with every friend she had at Paramount Pictures, she finally got an interview with J. M. Barrie, author of Peter Pan. Barrie personally chose her to play the lead in a film of his work Peter Pan which would be released in 1924. This film role had been sought by both Gloria Swanson and Mary Pickford, but Bronson won the role through her natural lightness and grace, probably refined through training with the Ballets Russes. Though she was with them for only a short time, perhaps a couple of weeks, it proved helpful in enhancing her portrayal of Peter Pan, especially in the flight sequences. She starred with Mary Brian (Wendy Darling) and Esther Ralston (Mrs Darling), and the three of them became very close friends for the rest of their lives.

Actor

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