Pola Negri was a poor child, playing in the streets of Warsaw, when two singers from the Polish Imperial Opera encouraged her to try out for the Imperial Ballet. Her natural grace and elegance won her the role and she danced for many years. From there, under the influence of the work of poet Ada Negri, she took the name Negri and auditioned and became a part of the drama academy under the same Imperial Theater. Her first film was called in English Slave to Her Senses (1914) and was the first feature film made in Poland. From Poland came the news of Negri’s talent and soon production companies in Germany and later in Hollywood, wanted her in their films. Her most famous works were Madame DuBarry (1919), The Woman He Scorned (1929), and A Woman Commands (1932).
Above(left) : Pola Negri in Madame DuBarry
Above (right): An American advertisement for the movie featuring the same scene
A movie poster for A Woman Commands
Negri was also famous for her celebrity lovers, including Charlie Chaplin, Rod La Rocque, and Rudolph Valentino.
Above: Pola Negri and Charlie Chaplin
From stage to silver screen, she was beloved for her talent and beauty. For more about Negri’s life, films, and loves, pick up a copy of Pola Negri: Hollywood’s First Femme Fatale by Mariusz Kotowski, chief executive officer of Bright Shining City Productions.