Few people have been so important and influential in Hollywood history than Douglas Fairbanks, Sr., and who better than Douglas’ niece and family historian Letitia, to relate that story. Nothing that we think of today when we think of movies would have occurred, such was the incredible force of nature known as “Doug Fairbanks.” One can easily call Fairbanks the Steve Jobs of 100 years ago. As did Jobs, Fairbanks pioneered the everyday use of what was then a brand-new technology (movies) and introduced the world to it. In the process Fairbanks revolutionized how the human population saw itself, and interacted with each other, just as Jobs did about 100 years later with his iPhone. As one of the 36 founding members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), Fairbanks’ life is uniquely inspiring. Rising from a variety of challenges, his extraordinary successes include the dream of all creative people: running their own show. This he did in spectacular fashion founding United Artists in 1919, along with his soon-to-be wife Mary Pickford, Charles Chaplin and D.W. Griffith. This updated version of the original 1953 biography has been expanded by the Fairbanks family with archival family materials, as well as never-before-published photographs.
Letitia Fairbanks was the niece of Douglas Fairbanks Sr. and Mary Pickford. She died in 1992.