Mary Pickford became one of Hollywood’s most powerful executives during its formative years. She entered acting at age six, first in Vaudeville and then in 1909 transitioned to film. Her popularity and shrewd business sense led to her record-setting salaries. In 1919, Pickford co-founded United Artists with Douglas Fairbanks, D.W. Griffith, and Charlie Chaplin to distribute films they produced, giving them artistic control and a large share of profits. Pickford spearheaded the founding of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and received a Best Actress Oscar in 1929.
Watch Pickford’s one-minute history