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Astor made her screen debut in 1921 and became a star playing opposite John Barrymore in Beau Brummel (1924) and Don Juan (1926). Talkies caused her no problems and her major credits include Red Dust (1932), Dodsworth (1936), The Prisoner of Zenda (1937), The Great Lie (for which she won an Academy Award, 1941) and The Palm Beach Story (1942). Astor is perhaps most famous for her role as the homicidal and gloriously untrustworthy Brigid O'Shaughnessy opposite Humphrey Bogart’s Sam Spade in The Maltese Falcon (1941). She reprised this role with Bogart in Across The Pacific (1942).
Astor’s career was almost derailed in 1936, when her suit for custody of her daughter Marylyn led to the disclosure of a juicy personal diary, allegedly documenting her liaisons with a number of prominent Hollywood figures.
As middle age approached, Astor moved gracefully into motherly, sympathetic roles, most famously as Judy Garland's mom in Meet Me In St. Louis (1944). Her striking supporting cameo as a prostitute in Act of Violence (1949) and her domineering mother in Stranger in My Arms (1959) were but two of the fine performances she was to give through the early 1960s. She retired after making Hush…Hush Sweet Charlotte in 1965.
This is a very fine cheque for $75, drawn in cash from her account at the Security Pacific National Bank in Woodland Hills, California on July 9th 1980. Made out entirely in her hand and boldly signed in black ink, condition is excellent.