The Actress Turned Princess Literally Fell From Grace

A Rich Girl in New York City

Born to wealthy Philadelphian parents in 1929, Kelly and her three siblings grew up in their family mansion. At 18, Kelly moved to New York City and lived in the Barbizon Hotel for Women while studying acting, which cost $1,000-per-year. But mommy and daddy didn’t pay the bills; she funded her studies by modeling.

View to the Barbizon Plaza Hotel from Central Park.

Photo by MCNY/Gottscho-Schleisner/Getty Images

Her big break was in the 1952 Western High Noon, which earned four Oscars, made $18 million at the box office, and essentially put Kelly’s name on the map. Soon enough, she was offered a contract with MGM Studios and went on to star in the films Mogambo (1953), Dial M for Murder and Rear Window (both 1954), and High Society (1956).

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