Cecilia Parker (Who’s Who at MGM, 1937) 🇺🇸

January 09, 2022

Cecilia Parker was born in Fort William, Canada, April 28. The daughter of a British soldier, Cecilia and the family were taken to England during the war, returning to Canada at its close. The family moved to Hollywood when Cecilia was nine, and she attended Hollywood High School and Immaculate Heart Convent.

She started her motion picture career as an “extra” in order to earn a little spending money. She was soon noticed by a casting director and offered a screen test. This test started her on a screen career as the heroine in several Western pictures. Her first was opposite George O’Brien, in which she rode a horse for the first time in her life. Other Western stars she appeared with were Buck Jones, Ken Maynard and Rex Bell.

Played Garbo’s Sister

In two years she appeared in “Rainbow Trail,” “Mystery Ranch,” “Jungle Mystery,” “Lost Special,” “Tombstone Canyon,” “Lost Valley,” “Riders of Justice,” “Riders of Destiny,” “Secret Sinners” and “Lost Jungle.” In 1934 she was co-starred in “High School Girl.”

It was shortly after her appearance in this picture that Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer signed her to a long-term contract. They needed a blonde girl who resembled Greta Garbo enough to be her sister in “The Painted Veil.” Cecilia was chosen. To date, this is still her favorite role, and she considers it a “lucky break” that she was able to work with Miss Garbo. In succession she appeared in Naughty Marietta“The Night is Young,” Ah, Wilderness, “Three Live Ghosts,” “Old Hutch,” and “A Family Affair.”

Seeks Character Roles

Cecilia is five feet three and one-half inches tall, weighs 110 pounds, has honey-colored hair and brown eyes. She lives in Beverly Hills with her mother and brother, and has a married sister.

Originally her youthful ambition was to become an opera singer or great pianist. Today she wants to be a great character actress.

Although Cecilia is not superstitious, she does believe in hunches and follows her “woman’s intuition” rather than seek other people’s advice. She particularly dislikes gushing people and believes sincerity is the most important human characteristic.

She is an all-around athlete. Likes to ride horseback, but still prefers a Western saddle to the English saddles used by her friends. Plays an excellent game of tennis, and is a wizard on roller skates. Enjoys going to the beach in summer, but won’t go in the water over her knees. Gets an excellent sun-tan that lasts almost the year ‘round.

Loves the Mountains

She owns a large tract of land at Big Bear, and plans to build a cabin. Spends all her free time between pictures in the mountains, where she rides and can out-hike any of her chums.

Cecilia is popular with younger set of movie actors and actresses, but doesn’t go out a great deal at night.

Her favorite food is listed as anything Spanish, especially tamales. Also has a weakness for chocolate ice cream sodas. Gardenias and yellow roses are her favorite flowers.

Cecilia is an intensive student of the screen. Recently she made her first trip to Catalina Island to watch a picture company work.

Source: Who’s Who at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, 1937