When asked my favorite male & female stars of Hollywood's 1st golden age; I have no problem in announcing Barbara Stanwyck as my female choice.
Stanwyck was born Ruby Catherine Stevens in Brooklyn. She had an unusual beauty & distinctive husky voice & was an extremely versatile actor, easily moving between, melodrama, thrillers, westerns & comedies. The buzz was that she was wonderful to work with, professional, fun on the set, & never acted like the star that she was.
Stanwyck was nominated for 4 Oscars, but never won. In 1982, Stanwyck was awarded an honorary Oscar for "superlative creativity & unique contribution to the art of screen acting". Later in her career Stanwyck found work in TV, starring in the series The Big Valley & the miniseries The Thorn Birds (kissing the very gay Richard Chamberlain).
Stanwyck left a legacy of 93 films including one of my top 10 of all time- Ball Of Fire, with my male choice for best of the golden age- Gary Cooper. Stanwyck married twice, the first time to vaudevillian Frank Fay & the second time to Robert Taylor. Although she rebuffed any questions about her sexuality or her marriages, most of the Hollywood community believed that neither Stanwyck nor either of her husbands was straight.
In my research, I don’t find many names named for Stanwyck’s lovers. She seems to have been both discreet & well loved by those in the industry. There were the usual suspects- Joan Crawford & Tallulah Bankhead, not all that impressive as they both fucked me.
"Career is too pompous a word. It was a job, & I have always felt privileged to be paid for what I love doing."