Decidedly not the suburban girl next door, Grace Kelly had a brief but meteoric career as a star representing upper-class taste and sophistication for aspiring young fans in a burgeoning economy. A refined social type who was also distinct from shanty Irish, redheaded Susan Hayward, Kelly came from a wealthy and prominent Irish, but not Mainline, Philadelphia family. She was a self-possessed, cool, and elegant blonde with finishing-school touches who was nonetheless sexually alluring. Well positioned at the intersection of feminine appeal and class privilege, Kelly enjoyed many advantages. She attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts and lived at the Barbizon Hotel for Women in Manhattan while pursuing an acting career. Unnoticed in her first film, Fourteen Hours (1951), she portrayed a young Quaker bride in High Noon (1952), an important western that won six Academy Award nominations, and starred in seven big pictures so that the fan magazines began to notice her. Photoplays first story about the rising star, whose films were not yet all released, was titled as a formal greeting, “How Do You Do, Miss Kelly—How Do You Do It?” Acknowledging that she possessed the poise and composure befitting a young woman who “was born to wealth” and “schooled for social position,” the story emphasized her praiseworthy qualities such as self-reliance. Growing up in an exclusive neighborhood had not prevented her from learning self-discipline and the value of a dollar.
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