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Ava Gardner

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Ava Gardner

Ava Gardner (December 24, 1922January 25, 1990) was an American actress.

Ava Lavinia Gardner was born in the small farming community of Grabtown, Johnston County, North Carolina, the last of seven children of poor tobacco farmers.

Gardner made several movies before 1946, but it wasn't until she starred in The Killers did she become known as a sex symbol and movie star. She married Mickey Rooney when she was only 19 years old in 1941, then divorced in 1943, to Artie Shaw from 1945 to 1946, and to Frank Sinatra from 1951 to 1957. She was regarded as one of the most beautiful actresses in Hollywood. She also had affairs with the Spanish bullfighter Luis Miguel Dominguin and [[Mario Cabr靝, industrialist Howard Hughes, and actor George C. Scott, in the mid-1960s. (Scott was rumored to have beaten Gardner during their relationship.)

Gardner was nominated for an Oscar for 1953's Mogambo. She lost to Audrey Hepburn in Roman Holiday. Many thought Gardner's greatest performance was as Maxine Faulk in The Night of the Iguana, for which she was not even nominated. Grayson Hall, as the hysterical Miss Judith Fellowes, however, was nominated, albeit in the best supporting actress category.

She met author J.R.R. Tolkien at Oxford University in November 1964. Neither was aware of the fame of the other.

After a stroke in 1989, which left her partially paralyzed and bedridden, Frank Sinatra paid all her medical expenses. She died of pneumonia in London, England.

Ava Gardner is interred in the Sunset Memorial Park, Smithfield, North Carolina; the town of Smithfield now has an Ava Gardner Museum.

Gardner is portrayed by Kate Beckinsale in The Aviator (2004), a film by Martin Scorsese about Howard Hughes.

Filmography

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