Mary Louise Brooks was born on 14 November 1906, in Cherryvale, Kansas. She was the daughter of Myra Rude and Leonard Porter Brooks. She had three siblings. Her mother was a pianist and her father was a lawyer. In ca 1921, Louise Brooks accompanied her mother, Myra Rude to New York. She performed with the Denishawn dance troupe. In 1924, Louise Brooks appeared in George White's Scandals. In 1925, she danced in Florenz Ziegfeld's Follies. Signed up with Paramount film, in 1925, Louise Brooks appeared in The Street of Forgotten Men. Louise Brooks married Edward Sutherland in the summer of 1926. According to her memoirs Lulu in Hollywood by Louise Brooks, "I first met Eddie Goulding at lunch at the Algonquin Hotel in New York when I was seventeen, separated by just two years from the Kansas prairie. As an English gentleman he must have found me a startling little barbarian. He had seen me in the 1924 edition of George White's Scandals and wanted to make a screen test of me at the Paramount studio. When I said "No", after staring at me in a peculiar fashion, he went on, "Well then, how would you like to spend the afternoon with me?" To this I said "Yes", because I was not such a dunce as to dismiss the most joyful being I would ever meet." And; "Love is a publicity stunt, and making love - after the first curious raptures - is only another petulant way to pass the time waiting for the studio to call." In 1926, she starred in The American Venus, A Social Celebrity, It's the Old Army Game, The Show-Off, Just Another Blonde and Love 'Em and Leave 'Em. In 1927, Louise Brooks went to Hollywood; "When I went to Hollywood in 1927, the girls were wearing lumpy sweaters and skirts...I was wearing sleek suits and half naked beaded gowns and piles and piles of furs." She continued; "A well dressed woman, even though her purse is painfully empty, can conquer the world." And; "Most beautiful dumb girls think they are smart and get away with it, because other people, on the whole, aren't much smarter." In 1927, she starred in Evening Clothes, Rolled Stockings, Now We're in the Air and The City Gone Wild. In 1928, A Girl in Every Port and Beggars of Life. In 1929, as Margaret Odell in The Canary Murder Case, in Pandora's Box and Diary of a Lost Girl. "The trouble with us", said Grant Clarke to me in 1930, "is that we are too degenerate for one part of Hollywood and not degenerate enough for the other". In 1931, Louise Brooks appeared in Windy Riley Goes Hollywood, It Pays to Advertise and God's Gift to Women. Louise Brooks married her second husband, Deering Davis in 1933. In March 1934, Brooks left Davis. In 1936, she played in Empty Saddles. In 1937, in King of Gamblers and When You're in Love. Brooks divorced Davis in 1938. In 1938, Louise Brooks appeared in Three Mesquiteers Western. According to Louise Brooks; "There is no other occupation in the world that so closely resembled enslavement as the career of a film star." She continued; "The great art of films does not consist of descriptive movement of face and body but in the movements of thought and soul transmitted in a kind of intense isolation." And; "Every actor has a natural animosity toward every other actor, present or absent, living or dead." In the mid 1950s, she moved to Rochester. In 1982, Louise Brooks wrote her autobiography, Lulu in Hollywood. According to Louise Brooks; "I learned how to act by watching Martha Graham dance and I learned how to dance by watching Charlie Chaplin act." She continued; "I have a gift for enraging people, but if I ever bore you it will be with a knife." And; "I never gave away anything without wishing I had kept it; nor kept it without wishing I had given it away." Louise Brooks died aged 78, due to a heart attack, on 8 August 1985, in Rochester, New York. She was buried in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Rochester, New York.
"In my dreams I am not crippled. In my dreams, I dance." Louise Brooks
Excerpts and Source: Lulu in Hollywood by Louise Brooks.