WILLIAM POWELL


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William Powell was an actor from the 1920s to the 1960s. He was born in 1892 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and he was far from an overnight success. He became a stage actor when he was 20, and it would be 12 years before he went to Hollywood, and for the first seven years, he worked for Paramount Pictures, mostly playing villains! He became a star with The Canary Murder Case in 1929, which was made as a silent movie, but remade with sound, and it was Powell's wonderful voice that made him a star. In 1931, he switched to Warner Bros., and then in 1934 to MGM, where he became a top star, first with Myrna Loy in Manhattan Melodrama, and then with her again in The Thin Man the same year (he was nominated for the Best Actor Academy Award for this first film in the series). He had been married to Carole Lombard from 1931 to 1933 (and they made My Man Godfrey together, for which he was nominated for the Best Actor Academy Award), and he was also very memorable in his movies with Kay Francis, which included One Way Passage. In 1935, he made Reckless with Jean Harlow, and the two were engaged, but she became ill, passing away from kidney failure in 1937. Powell took a year off after her death, but returned to make many Thin Man sequels and other successful movies. In 1940, he married Diana Lewis after only knowing her for three weeks, and she was 27 years his junior, but their marriage lasted the rest of his life! As he aged, he seamlessly moved to older leading parts and character roles, including in Life With Father (for which he was nominated for the Best Actor Academy Award), Mister Roberts, and scores of others! He retired in 1955, and lived a quiet life until his passing in 1984, at the age of 91. He lived a most remarkable life!
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