1930s Starlet Mary Carlisle Dies at MPTF in Woodland Hills
Posted: Wednesday, August 1, 2018 – 4:34 PM
(CNS) – Mary Carlisle, a 1930s film starlet who shared the screen with notables including Bing Crosby, Will Rogers and Greta Garbo, died Wednesday at the Motion Picture Television Fund retirement community in Woodland Hills.
Carlisle was believed to be 104, but she notoriously kept her age a closely guarded secret, even from her family.
Her son, Beverly Hills interior designer James Blakeley III, told The Washington Post that she would often tell visitors that her true age was “none of your business.”
The blonde-haired beauty was born in Stockton but grew up with her mother in Hollywood. She had uncredited roles in a handful of films at MGM. Her Hollywood stature grew in 1932 when she was named a “Baby Star” by the Western Association of Motion Picture Advertisers. That year’s group of WAMPAS Baby Stars also included Ginger Rogers and Gloria Stuart.
Carlisle shared the screen with Crosby three times in the Paramount films “College Humor,” “Double or Nothing” and “Doctor Rhythm.” She also shared the screen with Garbo in “Grand Hotel,” with Buster Crabbe in “The Sweetheart of Sigma Chi” and Jack Benny in “It’s in the Air.”
She married British actor James Blakeley in 1942. He went on to become a 20th Century Fox television production manager, working on shows including “Peyton Place,” “Batman,” “M*A*S*H” and “The Green Hornet.”
He died in 2007.
Carlisle is survived by her son and two grandchildren.