Sunday, December 25, 2011

gone but not fogotten - agnes ayres

the sheik, 1921

in a daughter of luxury, 1922

with rudolph valentino in the sheik, 1921

"in movie land at the lasky studios, agnes ayres finds the stearns knight a good location to do her business from.” 1922

agnes ayres:  4 april, 1898 - 25 december, 1940)

born agnes eyre henkel in carbondale illinois, she made her screen debut in 1914 as an extra for essanay studios. she was soon spotted by jesse lasky, head of paramount studios who put her into cecile b. demille's held the enemy in 1920.  they began a relationship around that time as well.  her big break came in 1921 as  lady diana mayo in the sheik with rudolph valentino. she became great friends with valentino - he was godfather to her daughter & she had a dog named "tino".  
in 1923 her relationship with lasky began to wane & surprise, surprise so did her career. she starred in son of sheik in 1926 but pretty much disappeared.  she lost everything in the stock market crash of 1929 & would appear in her last starring role in the donovan affair with jack holt. to earn money she went on the vaudeville circuit and attempted a return to acting in 1936. unable to secure any starring roles, she appeared in mostly uncredited bit parts and finally retired from acting for good in 1937.
after her retirement, ayres became despondent & was committed to a sanatorium. she died there from a cerebral hemorrhage on december 25, 1940 at the age of 42.

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