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Judy Garland’s Career In 31 Stunning Photos


Judy Garland left an indelible mark on the film industry.

The actress and singer was born Frances Ethel Gumm on June 10, 1922, in Grand Rapids, Minnesota. She began her stage career when she was just a kid, performing with her sisters as part of the Vaudeville act The Gumm Sisters. By the age of 13, she had signed a film contract with MGM studios. Her early films included “Pigskin Parade” (1936) and “Love Finds Andy Hardy” (1938), alongside frequent co-star Mickey Rooney.

In 1939, Garland appeared as Dorothy Gale in “The Wizard of Oz.” The role, arguably her most well-known, cemented her place in the Hollywood canon. Dorothy’s costume, the blue-and-white gingham apron dress and ruby slippers, also became instantly iconic and continue to influence fashion trends to this day.

Judy Garland as Dorothy Gale, with Margaret Hamilton, in “The Wizard of Oz.”

Garland, whose daughter is performer Liza Minnelli, faced pressure from MGM about her looks and weight in her career. As a result, she was given amphetamines, on which she eventually became reliant. The star, who is widely beloved by the gay community, would go on to struggle with drugs throughout her career up until her untimely death from an accidental overdose in 1969.

In honor of what would have been the star’s 97th birthday, we’re taking a look back at her life and career in photos.

1935

Archive Photos via Getty Images

A portrait of the actress sometime in 1935, when she was first signed to MGM.

1935

Archive Photos via Getty Images

Garland poses for a portrait circa 1935.

1936

Bettmann via Getty Images

The actress in a scene from the 1936 film “Pigskin Parade.”

Circa 1936

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Garland at age 14 or 15.

1937

John Kobal Foundation via Getty Images

Garland in a Western costume for an MGM still.

1938

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Garland celebrates her 16th birthday at the Santa Monica beach home of Louis B. Mayer, with Jackie Cooper, left, and Mickey Rooney.

1939

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Rooney kisses Garland as they arrive at the “Babes in Arms” movie premiere in 1939.

1939

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Garland in “Babes in Arms.”

Late 1930s

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Garland stands for a portrait at the Roney Plaza Cabana Sun Club in Miami around the time her film “Everybody Sing” premiered.

1939

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Garland sits on a staircase in a photo from 1939.

1939

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Garland snaps a photo in this image from 1939.

1939

John Kobal Foundation via Getty Images

Garland was promoted as an all-American girl by MGM.

1939

MGM Studios via Getty Images

Garland in a promotional image for the 1939 film “The Wizard of Oz.”

1940

John Kobal Foundation via Getty Images

A studio portrait of Garland at about age 18.

1940

Silver Screen Collection via Getty Images

The actress in a tinted photo from around 1940.

1940

Silver Screen Collection via Getty Images

Garland with two pet dogs, circa 1940.

1940

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Garland wears a dress she wore in the film “Babes in Arms,” circa 1940.

1940

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Garland in a promotional still from the 1940 film “Strike Up the Band.”

1940

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Garland in tap shoes between takes on the set of the film “Ziegfeld Girl.”

1941

John Springer Collection via Getty Images

The actress in California sometime in 1941.

1942

Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images

The American actor and dancer Gene Kelly dances with Garland in the 1942 film “For Me and My Gal.”

1944

Silver Screen Collection via Getty Images

Garland as Esther Smith, wearing a netting headdress, in “Meet Me In St. Louis,” directed by Vincente Minnelli, 1944. Garland would marry Minnelli in 1945.

Undated

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A portrait of Garland in an undated photograph.

1945

Silver Screen Collection via Getty Images

The actress with a badminton racket, circa 1945.

1945

Silver Screen Collection via Getty Images

Garland circa 1945.

1945

Silver Screen Collection via Getty Images

Garland in a studio portrait, circa 1945.

1954

Hulton Archive via Getty Images

The actor and singer in a scene from 1954’s “A Star Is Born.”

1950

Smith Collection/Gado via Getty Images

Garland in a checkered shirt, 1950.

1950

Silver Screen Collection via Getty Images

Garland wears a white lace blouse with and gold drop earrings in a studio portrait, circa 1950.

1954

Bettmann via Getty Images

Garland in one of several publicity shots for “A Star Is Born.”



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