Lillian Lorraine

Born - Jan 1, 1892 in San Francisco, CA  |   Died - Apr 17, 1955 in New York, NY  |  

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Renowned for her startling beauty rather than any thespian prowess, Lillian Lorraine (born Mary Ann Brennan) skyrocketed to fame in Miss Innocence (1909), a Florenz Ziegfeld spectacular in which she popularized Irving Berlin's "By the Light of the Silvery Moon." She was also, it was whispered, the reason for Ziegfeld's split with his common-law wife, Anna Held, the insouciant Miss Innocence of the title and the era's most admired musical comedy star. Lorraine went on to appear in several editions of the Ziegfeld Follies as well, where her backstage feud with comedian Fanny Brice took on near-legendary proportions. Onscreen, she played the leading lady in the Pathé serial Neal of the Navy (1915), but it was not one of the season's better vehicles, to put it mildly, and Lorraine's screen career remained a sideline to her Broadway aspirations. She was portrayed by Virginia Bruce in the 1936 MGM blockbuster The Great Ziegfeld, although the character was given the fictitious name of "Audrey Dane."