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Luciano Albertini

An Italian strong man and vaudeville performer, Lucien Albertini (real name: Luciano Albertini) had starred in a series of Italian silent films based on the Samson legend and produced Il Mostro di Frankenstein (1920), in which he played the baron, prior to making his Hollywood debut as the star of the action serial The Iron Man (1924). But although Albertini was highly publicized by Universal, he failed to click with American audiences who instead seemed to have rooted for one of their own, villain Joe Bonomo. Albertini returned to Europe posthaste and continued to appear onscreen well into the sound era. He reportedly died in a mental institution near Bologna. ~ Hans J. Wollstein, All Movie Guide

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Luciano Albertini was an Italian actor, producer, director and writer. Born on November 30th in 1882 in Lugo di Romagna, Italy, he died in 1945 in his home town, spending his last days in a mental asylum.

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Asta Nielsen

- Was born Asta Sofie Amalie Nielsen, September 11th, 1881 in Vesterbro, Copenhagen, Denmark.

- Her father was a coppersmith, her mother a washerwoman.

- Her mother wanted her to be a shopgirl.

- Her stage debut was when she was a child in the chorus of Kongelige Teater's production of Boito's opera, 'Mephistopheles'.

- She had a beautiful voice.

- Both of her parents died before she reached the age of 15.

- She studied at the Royal Theatre School of Copenhagen, where she became pregnant.

- She toured Scandinavia, becoming one of the highest paid and most popular stage actresses of her time.

- Her first film was Urban Gad's 'Afgrunden' (1910).

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Wow, it's been a year!!!! I promise to stop slacking off. Poor Asta!

I hope you liked the new photos, more to come soon.

Donald Crisp

Donald Crisp was born George William Crisp on July 27th, 1880. There's a little confusion as to whether he was born in Abberfeldy, Scotland or in London, England. He was one of eight children. His father, James Crisp, was a country doctor who owned a dairy farm.

Donald was educated at Oxford, and when he was nineteen years old he was a trooper in the 10th Hussars during the Boer War, where he crossed paths with a young Winston Churchill.

He came to the United States in 1906 with money he borrowed from a brother-in-law. He'd work as a handyman, opera company chorus member and stage manager, all for various people, before meeting D.W. Griffith and starting work at Biograph in 1908.

In 1912, Donald went to Hollywood with D.W. Griffith, where he was not just one of the famous director's actors, but also his assistant.

In 1915, Donald played Ulysses S. Grant in D.W. Griffith's 'Birth Of A Nation', on which he was also an assistant director.

Donald Crisp himself would go on to direct over sixty films and shorts, including Buster Keaton's 'The Navigator' (1924), and Douglas Fairbank's 'Don Q, Son of Zorro' (1925). Donald stopped his directing career though, because he was tired of having to do favours for the studio production cheifs by casting their relatives in his films.

During World War 1, Donald went to England where he served in army intelligence. When he returned to Hollywood afterwards, he joined Famous Players (later Paramount Pictures) under Adolph Zucker. Donald became an executive in charge of setting up studio operations in Europe.

In 1919, he divorced his first wife, Marie Stark. They're marriage date is unknown. In 1932 he married the proflic playwright and screenwriter, Jane Murfin. They remained married until her death.

In 1942 Donald won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his role in 'How Green Was My Valley'. In 1945 he played Elizabeth Taylor's father in 'National Velvet'.

By World War 2, Donald was a colonel in the U.S. Army reserves. He was also an advisor to Bank of America (one of Hollywood's main sources of working capital). He even spent some time as the bank's chairman.

It was Donald who performed the eulogy at D.W. Griffith's funeral in 1948, "It was the fate of David Wark Griffith to have a success unknown in the entertainment world until his day, and to suffer the agonies which only a success of that magnitude can engender when it is past."

At the end of Donald Crisp's career, he had been in more than 160 films and shorts, and would become one of Hollywood's most revered character actors. His last film was 'Spencer's Mountain' with Henry Fonda in 1963.

Donald Crisp died on May 25th, 1974 from complications caused by a stroke.

He has a star on the Hollywood walk of fame at 1620 Vine St. He's buried at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, California.

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Donald Crisp

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Donald Crisp and Douglas Fairbanks in, 'Don Q, Son of Zorro' (1925)

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