Marlene Dietrich (1901–1992) was a German-American actress and singer, and one of the true legends of the Golden Age of Hollywood.Born Marie Magdalene Dietrich in Schöneberg, Berlin, she started out in vaudeville and theater, then moved to German silent films. The transition to sound coincided with her move to Hollywood in 1930; she became a U.S. citizen in 1939. An anti-Nazi, Dietrich performed for the American troops on the front lines of the European theater of World War II. She also played a major part in helping many refugees in Europe emigrate to Hollywood.As an actress, she is known for her sultry, somewhat stoic style of acting. She also famously crossdressed in many of her roles, usually cabaret scenes. She's most famous for her many collaborations with director Josef von Sternberg.Dietrich was very secretive of her private life, although she was openly bisexual. Her list of conquests is truly staggeringnote , although it should be taken with a grain of salt, especially because a lot of those claims come from her rather jaded daughter, Maria Riva, who also published poetry written by her.As usual, you can find the basics at The Other Wiki.
Marlene Dietrich on TV Tropes:
- The Blue Angel (1930)
- Morocco (1930)
- Blonde Venus (1932)
- Shanghai Express (1932)
- A Foreign Affair (1948)
- Stage Fright (1950)
- Around the World in Eighty Days (1956) (cameo)
- Witness for the Prosecution (1957)
- Touch of Evil (1958)
- Judgment at Nuremberg (1961)
Marlene Dietrich's roles provide examples of the following tropes:
- Bifauxnen / Wholesome Crossdresser
- Femme Fatale: Marlene along with Louise Brooks was the Trope Codifier for this.
- Good Bad Girl: Pretty much every role.
- Platonic Life Partners: Despite both of them otherwise having reputations as Casanovas, Orson Welles insisted their relationship was just friendship.
- Large Ham: She often played roles of this caliber in her later life. She's really having fun in Stage Fright.
- Nice Hat: Often wore a top hat while performing her cabaret act.
- Playing Against Type: Dietrich did this with some frequency later in her career. Especially Judgment at Nuremberg, where she plays a resentful (and decidedly unglamorous) German war widow.
- The Rival: Greta Garbo, who was also a European Hollywood sex symbol of iconic proportions. Of course, Marlene differed from Garbo for the fact that she loved show business and the limelight whereas Greta "wanted to be alone".
- She's Got Legs: Did she ever!
- Smoking Is Glamorous: One of the most iconic glamorized smokers, and provides the page image.