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Lillian Roth

Biography: 

(1910-1980)

The Ziegfeld beauty whose struggles with alcohol became the subject of an M.G.M. motion picture, "I'll Cry Tomorrow," Lillian Roth began her life on the stage as a child actor in a kiddie vaudeville act. At the age of seventeen she performed in Earl Carroll's Vanities, and then, Ziegfeld's Follies of 1928.  She ventured to Hollywood, performed in the early sound musical "The Love Parade," won a prize part in Paramount's "The Vagabond King," and established a solid place in comedies and musicals - "Animal Crackers," "Madam Satan," and "Take a Chance" - before substance abuse made her too risky to hire.

Roth committed herself to institutional care at the end of World War II, and in the early 1950s wrote a book about the struggles of rehabilitation. She returned to the stage in the 1962 musical "I Can Get it for You Wholesale." David S. Shields/ALS