Real name: Gladys Smith
Birthdate: June 8, 1921
Partner: Craig Stevens
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Born Gladys Smith in Penticton, British Columbia, Canada, she was the second Canadian with the name (following Mary Pickford) to achieve New York City and Hollywood stardom. Later in life she would say she preferred New York, while her husband of 49 years, actor Craig Stevens, favored California. She was quite tall, standing at least 5'9", and to fit her, the long, stylish dresses that former Warners' star Kay Francis had worn were allotted to her.
Some of Smith's other films include Rhapsody In Blue (1945), Of Human Bondage (1946), and The Young Philadelphians (1959).
Smith appeared on the cover of the May 3, 1971 issue of Time with the announcement that she would be starring in the Hal Prince's Broadway production of Stephen Sondheim's Follies. In 1972 she won the Tony for Best Actress in a Musical for her performance. She followed this with the 1973 all-star revival of The Women, the short-lived 1975 comedy Summer Brave, and the ill-fated 1978 musical Platinum, which drew decent notices only for her performance and quickly closed.
Smith was nominated for an Emmy Award for a guest appearance in the television sitcom Cheers in 1990.
Smith died in Los Angeles, California from brain cancer on the day after her 72nd birthday. She had no children and her husband was her only survivor.
Rumors about her sexuality were prompted by lesbian author Rita Mae Brown's dedication of her book, Rubyfruit Jungle, to Smith.