One of the great things about candid shots, such as those you find here on our site, is that you see what the stars looked like off the screen.
Above is Lana Turner as shown here a fresh faced, pretty girl next door. I think you’ll agree that she looked pretty good back then.
Fact is that Lana was a knockout from the get-go. By age 15, Lana (born in Idaho) found herself attending Hollywood High School.
Schoolmate, actress Nanette Fabray, recalled that she was the most incredibly beautiful girl we had ever seen. Even the teachers stared at her…she had the bearing of a princess. We all knew she would be a movie star.
Turner was discovered in Hollywood not at Schwab’s Drugstore, as legend has it, but at Currie’s Ice Cream Parlor on the corner of Highland Ave. and Sunset Blvd. She was cutting a high school class, sipping a coke when she was introduced to man-about-Hollywood Billy Wilkerson (a founder of The Hollywood Reporter).
Wilkerson put her in touch with Zeppo Marx, the retired Marx Brother turned talent agent. Lana soon found herself working as an extra in the 1937 version of A Star Is Born.
She landed her first speaking role in a ho-hum Warner Brothers courtroom melodrama, 1937’s They Won’t Forget, playing a comely highschooler ostensibly murdered by her teacher. We screened the movie not long ago, and were astonished to witness the 16-year-old’s poise and beauty onscreen.
It was after this movie that Lana was dubbed “the sweater girl (see below).
Her journey had begun.