Fannie Ward (Fanny Buchanan)
BiographySt. Louis, Missouri, USA
Fannie Ward was a star of light comedies on Broadway and in vaudeville. Internationally famous, she was at the height of her career in the first decade of the 20th century. She debuted on Broadway at 19 in "Pippino" (1890). She went on to starring roles in "The Marriage of William Ashe", "Madam President" and "The Shop Girl". Although she was a good deal older than ideal for the role of the young spendthrift wife of a Wall Street tycoon, she made her screen debut in Cecil B. DeMille's production of The Cheat (1915). Read more... and features a shocking scene in which Ward's character is branded and nearly raped by a dapper but sinister Japanese ivory baron played by Sessue Hayakawa. She went on to star in several successful melodramas, the plots of most of which revolved around her near loss of virtue to a selection of nefarious characters. She was married to actor Jack Dean, who also appeared in at least 15 of her 26 films. Known as "The Youth Girl," she was continually cast in roles that were 20 to 30 years younger than her actual age. By the time she retired from the screen in 1920, she was just too old to carry it off anymore, and "The Youth Girl" sobriquet had become more of a joke than an honest tribute. After retiring from the screen, she opened a beauty palace in Paris called "The Fountain of Youth."