It’s been greater than 70 years since this actress has appeared in a film’s credit — for a very good motive.
Karolyn Grimes starred within the Christmas traditional “It’s a Wonderful Life” as James Stewart’s precocious 6-year-old daughter Zuzu Bailey.
The half within the 1946 Frank Capra-directed movie modified Grimes’ life, however not essentially for the higher. The now-81-year-old has revealed the tragic motive why she determined to depart Tinseltown.
Her departure from the limelight started with the lack of each her mother and father when she was about 12 years outdated, she informed Fox News.
Following her mother and father’ demise, Grimes moved from Hollywood to a small city in Kansas.
“At first, I believed I’d died,” she stated of her uprooted life with distant relations. “It took a few 12 months for me to really feel comfy. And sadly, I used to be in a very horrible residence state of affairs.”
But it surely was the generosity that may solely be present in a small city that helped her pull by means of.
“I used to be in a city of 800 individuals they usually all knew my state of affairs,” she stated. “These townspeople rallied round me — the retailers, my lecturers, all the youngsters, all people — they usually simply welcomed me with open arms.”
The “love and self-confidence” she felt from her neighbors stood in stark distinction to the world she left behind.
“I noticed I didn’t wish to return to Hollywood anymore. It was a shallow, dog-eat-dog world. I didn’t need that in my life. So I felt content material staying in Kansas,” Grimes stated. “At first, I did miss Hollywood. However after I used to be in Kansas for a 12 months, issues modified for me.”
Grimes first appeared within the 1945 “That Night time With You.” her final credited position was 1951’s “Honeychile.”
The previous actress just lately wrote a e-book about her experiences engaged on the flick titled “Zuzu Bailey’s ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ Cookbook.” Grimes dished that it was the Jimmy Stewart Museum who known as and requested her to put in writing the e-book for the movie’s seventy fifth anniversary.
She additionally opened up about how she scored the coveted position.
“We didn’t have auditions again within the day. We had interviews. And a lot of the youngsters had the identical agent,” Grimes stated. “So if the studio stated, ‘We wish a blond-hair, blue-eyed freckled child,’ they’d a hand at choosing the perfect little one for the position. They’d a hand at choosing everybody, even the extras. I spoke to Mr. Frank Capra himself and subsequent factor you already know, I received the position.”
Grimes famous that an encounter in 1980 was when she realized how timeless “It’s a Fantastic Life” actually was. Somebody got here to her entrance door whereas she was dwelling in Kansas and requested her to do an interview concerning the movie.
“The film got here out so way back. However clearly, there was an curiosity in it nonetheless. I dug up all of my memorabilia from the basement and began sharing tales. Then the fan mail began coming in,” she stated.
She nonetheless does appearances across the nation on the movie and its legacy — and believes that the film’s message is as related because it ever was.
“It’s a scary world on the market,” she stated. “And we want a movie like ‘It’s a Fantastic Life’ now greater than ever.