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Dorothy Davenport

Fannie Dorothy Davenport, Dorothy Davenport (March 13, 1895 – October 12, 1977) was an American actress, screenwriter, film director and producer. Davenport's family was heavily involved in the theater. Her father Harry Davenport was a comedian and her mother Alice Davenport was a well-known actress. At a young age she began working in the fledgling film industry, and subsequently moved to California to work at Nestor Film Company. Davenport was a Hollywood star at age 17. While working at Nestor, Davenport met her future husband, actor Wallace Reid whom she married in 1913. After the birth of her son in 1917, Davenport began to act less; however, she again gained notoriety when her husband Wallace Reid's career took off. Reid soon came under the spotlight as reports that he was a severely ill drug addict began to surface. Subsequently, Davenport became the source of information about her husband's condition, and after his death in January 1923 she co-produced Human Wreckage (1923). The film explores the dangers of narcotics addiction, and Davenport played the role of a drug addict's wife. Billed as "Mrs. Wallace Reid", she followed its success with other social-conscience films such as Broken Laws (1924) and The Red Kimono (1925) . After the release of The Red Kimono, California socialite Gabrielle Darley sued Davenport for 50,00 for using her name and life story without approval. As her on-screen roles continued to diminish, she transitioned to directing, producing and screenwriting. Davenport's successful transition is often attributed to her range of positions in life, including mother, widow, Hollywood producer and social activist.While Davenport's company dissolved in the late 1920s, she continued to take on smaller writing and directing roles. In 1929 Davenport directed Linda a film about a woman who gives up her happiness for the sake of men and social expectations. Davenport directed her last film in 1934; however, she continued in the film industry in other roles until her last known credit in 1956 as dialogue supervisor of The First Traveling Saleslady. Davenport died in October 1977 at the age of 82.

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