Friday, April 23, 2010

April 23: America's First Sweetheart

On this day in 1928, Shirley Temple was born in Santa Monica, California. Beginning her screen career at the age of three, she first skyrocketed to fame in 1934 in the feature Bright Eyes. Between 1935-1938 she was the top box-office draw in the U.S.

An Academy Award winner, Shirley Temple's Disney-connections are many.

In February 1939, she presented Walt Disney with one statuette and seven miniature statuettes for his Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, at the 11th Academy Awards.

That same year Temple was caricatured (along with other
Hollywood stars) in the Donald Duck cartoon
The Autograph Hound

In April 1957, Temple (now an adult with children of her own) took part in a re-dedication of Sleeping Beauty's Castle at Disneyland.

Later in life Temple sat on the board of directors for some of the largest enterprises ... including The Walt Disney Company (between 1974-1975).

In 2001, The Wonderful World of Disney aired the episode "Child Stars: The Shirley Temple Story."

"When I first met Walt Disney, I remember him being a little shy, but pleasant. I was very pleased to be the one to present him with his unique Academy Award for Snow White. To me Walt will always be a king of a very special magic kingdom of imagination." -Shirley Temple

Click HERE for more April 23 Disney history.

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