Frances Farmer Trivia


Her rise and tragic fall were documented in the movie Frances (1982) with Jessica Lange in the lead role. She received an Oscar nomination for best actress for her performance.

Frances Farmer My Hero - The Unauthorized Biography is a rock opera based on the life of the tragic screen star.

French-Canadian singer Mylène Farmer chose her stage name in homage to Frances, and her first hit song, Maman a tort, in 1984 was about the actress.

Was portrayed by Susan Blakely in Will There Really Be a Morning? (1983) (TV).

Her life is also profiled in the A&E documentary "Frances Farmer: Paradise Lost" (2001) directed by Lawrence Williams.

For her very special tribute appearance on "This Is Your Life" (1952), Frances was given an automobile -- an Edsel.

Director Howard Hawks said he considered her the best actress he ever worked with.

Her third, and last, husband Leland C. Mikesell was born May 20, 1904 and died January 1971.

Farmer was the subject of a song  Frances Farmer Will Have Her Revenge On Seattle on the album In-Utero by Nirvana.

Contrary to popular belief, Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love's daughter, Frances Bean Cobain, was not named after Frances Farmer.

Stephen Cush, a member of the British group The Men They Couldn't Hang wrote a song called Lobotomy Gets 'Em Home in memory of Frances Farmer after he saw the biographical film Frances (1982). The song appears on the album Silvertown on Silvertone Records.

Singer Patterson Hood included the song  Frances Farmer in his 2004 album Killers and Stars which features Farmer's picture on the cover.

She inspired several literature works: "God's Peculiar Care" (1991) by Patrick Roscoe (from the title of Farmer's lost biographical novel), the thriller "The Canvas Prison" (1982) by Gordon DeMarco and the collection of short stories "Las fotografías de Frances Farmer" (1992) by Peruvian author Iván Thays.

Culture Club and Everything But The Girl both wrote songs about her, The Medal Song and Ugly Little Dreams respectively.

The actress was the subject of several theater plays: The Frances Farmer Story by Sebastian Stuart, Golden Girl by Peter Occhiogrosso and Saint Frances of Hollywood by Sally Clarke.

Throughout her career, Farmer was frequently announced for projects she did not get to perform. Among the many Paramount films for which she was announced were College Holiday, Hideaway Girl, Spawn of the North, Big Broadcast of 1938, Beau Geste, and Take A Letter, Darling.

Preston Sturges apparently wanted Farmer for Sullivan's Travels, but the role ultimately went to Veronica Lake.

From 1944-45, during her initial institutionalizations and releases from Western State Hospital, several news articles quoted producers as offering her the lead in the film The Enchanted Forest and the Broadway play The Incredible Woodhull.

She allowed the Paramount make-up department to shave off her eyebrows as a part of the routine "makeover" given to any newly contracted actress. Only a year later (1937), studio photographs show they'd grown back and she wasn't trimming them pencil-thin, contrary to the standard practice for Hollywood actresses at the time.

The January 25 1943 issue of Newsweek magazine stated that Farmer's famous remark, "Have you ever had a broken heart?" made while she was being carried away from the courtroom by police officers didn't refer to her former husband Leif Erickson but to "a failed relationship with a Hollywood director."
-- Based on Edith Farmer Elliot's book Look Back in Love along with Farmer's personal correspondence, some researchers have concluded that this director was Harold Clurman, to whom Farmer had loaned money.


-- Farmer was one of only a very few featured guests of the popular This is Your Life series to have been alerted beforehand about the impending show.


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