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June 4, 2021

20 Stunning Black and White Portraits of Paulette Goddard in the 1940s

“Life was easy as a blonde. I didn’t have to think, I didn’t have to talk. All I had to do was waltz around.” –Paulette Goddard

American actress Paulette Goddard, born Pauline Marion Levy (June 3, 1910 – April 23, 1990), spent her teen years as a Broadway chorus girl, gaining attention when she was featured reclining on a prop crescent moon in the 1928 Ziegfeld musical Rio Rita. In Hollywood as early as 1929, Goddard reportedly appeared as an extra in several Hal Roach two-reel comedies, making confirmed bit appearances in a handful of these short subjects wearing a blonde wig over her naturally raven-black hair. Continuing as a blonde, she appeared as a “Goldwyn Girl” in the 1932 Eddie Cantor film Kid From Spain, where she was awarded several close-ups.

Goddard’s career went into full gear when she met Charlie Chaplin, who was looking for an unknown actress to play “The Gamin” in his 1936 film Modern Times. Struck by the actress’ breathtaking beauty and natural comic sense, Chaplin not only cast her in the film, but fell in love with her. It is still a matter of contention in some circles as to whether or not Chaplin and Goddard were ever legally married, but whatever the case, the two lived together throughout the 1930s.

Goddard’s expert performances in such films as The Young in Heart (1938) and The Cat and the Canary (1939) enabled her to ascend to stardom without Chaplin’s sponsorship, but the role she truly craved was that of Scarlett O’Hara in the 1939 epic Gone With the Wind. Unfortunately, that did not work out, and Vivien Leigh landed the part.

After working together in The Great Dictator (1940), Goddard and Chaplin’s relationship crumbled; by the mid-1940s she was married to another extremely gifted performer, Burgess Meredith. The actress remained a box-office draw for her home studio Paramount until 1949, when she received a phone call at home telling her bluntly that her contract was dissolved.

Goddard’s film appearances in the 1950s were in such demeaning “B” pictures as Vice Squad (1953) and Babes in Baghdad (1953). Still quite beautiful, and possessed of a keener intellect than most movie actors, she retreated to Europe with her fourth (or third?) husband, German novelist Erich Maria Remarque (All Quiet on the Western Front). This union was successful, lasting until Remarque’s death. Coaxed out of retirement for one made-for-TV movie in 1972 (The Snoop Sisters), Goddard preferred to remain in her lavish Switzerland home for the last two decades of her life.


  1. Flashbak: "Everything old is new again"
    Vintag: "Everything that used to be stale is still stale"

    Nobody knows ar cares who Paulette Goddard was. So much so that they can't even confirm most of what she was ever in. Grandpa Hubert's slideshow of his London vacation in 1958 put the family to sleep then, and it still has the same effect today.

    Why not try to not post somethign if it doesn't have some sort of social significance or artistic value? Both would be even better! But most of what you post has neither.

    1. Well Ken,

      Goddard received one Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress for the film So Proudly We Hail! (also 1943).

      Goddard was teamed with Fred MacMurray in Standing Room Only (1944) and Sonny Tufts in I Love a Soldier (1944). She was one of many Paramount stars in Duffy's Tavern (1945).

      Goddard's most successful film was Kitty (1945), in which she played the titular role.

      Goddard's foremost legacies remain her two feature films with Charles Chaplin, Modern Times and The Great Dictator, and a large donation to a prominent American educational institution.

      Perhaps if she had made Marvel movies or voiced video games she might seem relevant to you. What will you find relevant in thirty years?

    2. So you are an expert on what people want to read about? How about this? Start your own blog and post your "social significance" stuff. Better yet, just leave.

  2. If you don't like this page, stop coming here. Start your own. I probably wouldn't be interested in it as we already have so many other socially significant and artistic choices as it is. And remember, not everyone is as artful and socially significant as you seem to be.

  3. What an ignorant statement. This site is all things to all people. The posts are not all interesting to some, but are varied gems, that have appeal beyond some individual's lack of any broad awareness of the world's social history, that makes us who we are.

  4. You guys don't get it, do you? This site isn't "all things to all people", or "socially significant". It isn't even a real photo site. It is an ad farm site, part of a network of similarly named sites that take photos and descriptions from other sites and wikipedia and paste them here and at other sites purely to generate income from the adviews. The guy who runs this place even trolls his own sites to generate fake controversy like this just to lure gullible people like yourselves into additional page loads and adviews. He has already had previous versions of his sites booted from here and Facebook several times for it, but as his network already has multiple accounts set up there is little they can do about it.
    If this was a legitimate photo site, the efforts of the owner would be centered on the photos. But he simply grabs whatever gallery is handy, as long as he doesn't rip from the same site too often. He has duplicated galleries, and sites have even taken to deliberately putting incorrect photos into their galleries just so that they can bust him at it when he lifts them.
    So quit trying to defend the guy, he is an adfarm scum.

    1. Oh, and JT1on1:
      About "all things to all people"...relativism is a logical fallacy. Using it when you call someone ignorant really doesn't do your own credibility any favors.




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