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1930s & Earlier / Call Her Savage 1932
Clara Gordon Bow was born in Brooklyn, New York (1905). Her early life was marred by poverty, mental illness (her mother was schizophrenic) and violence. Her mother slit Clara's throat in a rage over her decision to pursue a film career. During the early 1920s, Clara won a magazine beauty contest which led to a successful screen test. Her film career spanned eleven years from 1922 to 1933. During that time, Bow made 56 films. In 1928, she was the highest paid screen actor making $35,000 per week. With her nasal tone and heavy Brooklyn accent, her career began to decline with the advent of sound. Bow's career was damaged further by several highly publicized lawsuits for alienation of affection. She was also plagued by mental health problems that lead to repeated institutionalization throughout the remainder of her life. She died of a heart attack at age 60 in West Hollywood. . .