Mr Rudolph Valentino
6th May 1895 To 14th August 1926
Rudolph Valentino was born in the village of Castellanta, in southern Italy on May 6th 1895. Although the family were not poor, and his life at home was comfortable from an early age he longed for the day when he would be able to leave his village. After his father died in 1906, Rudolph and his brother were sent to the town of Taranto to study. But even this did not satisfy the young man, and after much pleading, his mother agreed to give Rudolph the money his father had set aside to pay for his education. At the age of eighteen he set sail for America. He soon realised that life was going to be hard, and for a while it was. He landed a variety of jobs including, gardener, and busboy in an Italian restaurant. It was while he was employed there that an older waiter took him under his wing. He taught him how to dance, and soon Rudolph was employed as a full time dancer. He became the star attraction when he began performing at Maxims in New York. but after a scandal erupted involving him and a married woman he fled to San Francisco. After a while he set his sights on Hollywood. His first part was fleeting, but by then he had caught the eye of the female star of the film, she insisted he be given the male lead part in her next film. But the love scenes proved too much for her husband who was also the director and the budding relationship ended. Bur Rudolph had achieved what he wanted and it was not long before he was a huge success. Rudolph married Jean Acker, but it was a marriage in name only. He threw himself into his work, and appeared in the role of Julio in the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. it was a role that many stars of the day coveted, and probably his most famous role to date as the Sheik. He divorced Jean, and went on to marry Natacha Rambova on May 13th 1922. But he had not waited the required time between his divorce and remarriage, and was consequently jailed for bigamy. After proving the marriage had not been consummated he was released and the couple went on to marry again. But it did not last and just two years later the couple separated. Again, Rudolph found comfort in his work. In 1925 he appeared in The Eagle, the Son Of Sheik followed this. These films placed him at the top of the Hollywood ladder. On August 14th 1926 Rudolph was rushed to hospital suffering from appendicitis, he was operated on, but complication set in. On August 23rd 1926 a shocked world awoke to the news that the star had died at the age of thirty-one.
The brightest star in the sky fades next to you. You will shine in our lives forever A special place will be kept in our hearts for your memory
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