Jean Arthur battled crippling insecurity. Though she eventually became a well-known star, Arthur was very unsure of herself early on in her career. She was insecure about how her voice sounded and her abilities as an actress. She faced so much criticism at the beginning of her career that she was too quiet.
But Arthur persevered and eventually received praise for her work. She was successful in branching out for a female in the industry at the time. She was known for landing comedic roles and was often cast as a capable woman.
Hedy Lamarr Was an Inventor
Hedy Lamarr was super smart. Yet another actress who was unfortunately limited by societal standards, Hedy Lamarr, did not receive credit for her remarkable intelligence until later in life. The actress had a mind for engineering and was even partially responsible for inventing the fundamental structure for WiFi.
She partnered with George Antheil in developing the structure, but Lamarr herself was shafted by the National Inventors Council. Pitifully, she was more or less told to remain a beautiful face on-screen and not an inventor. It was not until 2014 (long after her death) that Hedy Lamarr was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame.
Clark Gable was a clean freak. In stark contrast to James Dean, Clark Gable was very, very into good hygiene. The dashing actor and serial, leading man were known to shower around several times a day and did not believe in taking baths.
He found the thought of soaking in stagnant water utterly repulsive. The actor also changed his sheets every single day.
Russian Sidney Poitier
Sidney Poitier was fluent in Russian. The elegant and talented actor studied the Russian language in-depth and spoke it fluently.
It’s not known why Poitier was motivated to study the language, but he took the lingual pursuit pretty seriously.
Katharine Hepburn the Stuntwoman
Katherine Hepburn did many of her own stunts. That’s right; the confident, fast-talking actress thought she was the best person for her stunts.
It’s not that there were no stunt people available, but Hepburn insisted upon doing the stunts herself. This included taking it upon herself to dive headfirst into a lake for her part in On Golden Pond...at 74 years old!