A Centennial Tribute to Jeanette MacDonald
Though known these days mostly because of her eight films with Nelson Eddy, Jeanette MacDonald also had a career that existed outside of that duo, making a total of 28 films during a 20-year career, most showcasing her lovely soprano voice with its impressive range.
Born Jeanette Anna MacDonald on June 18, 1903 in Philadelphia, Jeannette was trained as a dancer and then a singer, performing at an early age, and eventually starring on Broadway before beginning her film career in 1929, at the dawn of the sound era.
She was a star from the very beginning. In fact, her first film, The Love Parade (1929), also made Maurice Chevalier a star, and put Ernst Lubitsch into the top ranks of directors. It was not the only pairing of MacDonald and Chevalier, but studio decisions resulted in another male co-star becoming her better-known companion.
Jeanette was first paired with Nelson Eddy in Naughty Marietta (1935), and Jeanette MacDonald and Nelson Eddy became the biggest musical team of their era, making seven more films together during the 30s and 40s. Their fans were legion, and they still have plenty of devotees, even 60 years after their heyday. It may have been cornball to some critics, but it was successful, popular, and well-sung corn.
Jeanette’s film career slowed after the early 1940s, although she performed before sold-out audiences in stage musicals and operas, and she eventually retired from films after her 1949 appearance in The Sun Comes Up, a Lassie film. She made a few personal appearances, and recorded a best-selling album of songs with Eddy, but there were no more movies.
Married to actor Gene Raymond since 1937, she concentrated on her family until her death in 1965 from heart disease at the age of 61. We saluted her with this tribute on what would have been her 100th birthday, and invite you to enjoy some of the links listed below. If you haven’t heard her sing, be sure to listen to any available sound clips.
Jeanette MacDonald Tributes/Pages
- Jeanette MacDonald and Nelson Eddy Home Page
Extensive site offers a biography, filmography, photos, and more, plus membership in the Mac/Eddy Club. It’s also your headquarters forSweethearts and other books by Sharon Rich.
- The Legendary Jeanette MacDonald – The Iron Butterfly, a tribute site by Pierre Montiel
Other Jeanette MacDonald Pages
Selected Reviews of Jeanette MacDonald’s Best Films
- The Girl of the Golden West – Review by Sanderson Beck from Movie Mirrors.
- Love Me Tonight (1932) – Review by Sanderson Beck from Movie Mirrors.
- Maytime (1937) – Review by Tim Dirks from The Greatest Films.
- Naughty Marietta (1935) – Review by Sanderson Beck from Movie Mirrors.
- One Hour With You (1932) – Review by Sanderson Beck from Movie Mirrors.
- Rose Marie (1936) – Review by Tim Dirks from The Greatest Films.
- San Francisco (1936) – Review by Sanderson Beck from Movie Mirrors.
- Three Daring Daughters (1948) – From Class Act.
Where To Find Or See Jeanette MacDonald Films
Books By or About Jeanette MacDonald
- Jeanette MacDonald Autobiography – by Sharon Rich
- Sweethearts: The Timeless Love Affair — On-Screen and Off — Between Jeanette MacDonald and Nelson Eddy, Updated Edition – by Sharon Rich
- Jeanette MacDonald: The Irving Stone Letters – by Sharon Rich
- Hollywood Diva: A Biography of Jeanette Macdonald – by Edward Baron Turk
- Jeanette MacDonald – by Lee Edward Stern
- The Jeanette MacDonald Story – by James Robert
- The Complete Films of Jeanette Macdonald and Nelson Eddy – by Philip Castanza
- Jeanette MacDonald and Nelson Eddy Paper Dolls in Full Color – by Tom Tierney
Jeanette MacDonald Photos/Art On The Web
Jeanette MacDonald Movie Posters On The Web
From our Classic Movies Poster Store
(Click for larger view or to purchase)
All Jeanette MacDonald Posters from our Classic Movies Poster Store.