R.I.P. Shirley Temple: 5 Things to Know About the Legendary Child Star

by Burke Speaker | February 11, 2014 10:04 am

The famed child star Shirley Temple has died at 85, leaving behind a unique Hollywood legacy.

The star — known later in life as Shirley Temple Black following her marriage — was arguably Hollywood’s biggest child star.

Here are 5 things to know about the legendary child actress:

5. Shirley Temple started her career at age 3

Her first film that gained her national attention was in 1932 when she played in “War Babies” — a short film. After that she began to rise in popularity and before the tender age of 10, was commanding $50,000 per movie (which was massive for the time). Her hits included “Little Miss Marker” (1934), “Curly Top” (1935) and “The Littlest Rebel” (1935).

4. She was an ambassador later in life

Shirley Temple Black served in the U.S. delegation to the United Nations (1969 to 1974), and followed that up by being U.S. ambassador to Ghana and U.S. ambassador to Czechoslovakia.

3. Shirley Temple started hair trends long before Jennifer Aniston did

Think “The Rachel” was popular? That ‘do had nothing on Shirley Temple. Her blond corkscrew curls were wildly popular with young girls from her debut in the ’30s all the way through the 1970s.

2. The Great Depression may have been the reason for her success

Well, at least in part. Her career hit its peak as the country was suffering the impacts of the Great Depression. Film history say her movies offer the nation a chance to escape by offering them uplifting moments and images of childish innocence.

1. She aged out at 12

Think Hollywood is tough on older women now? As young Shirley grew older, her films didn’t fare as well and 20th Century Fox terminated her contract in 1940. She hadn’t even reached her teen years yet. Years later, she starred in smaller films and even received two lifetime achievement awards.

Looking for more memories? A remembrance guest book will be set up online at shirleytemple.com[1].

  1. shirleytemple.com: http://www.shirleytemple.com/

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