N is for Name Game: From Lucille to Joan


Joan Crawford— a name forever etched in Hollywood history; a name that’s always associated with the words glam, style, talent, beauty, kindness, and fame; a name… that was chosen by a fan.


Yep, that’s not her real name. Like most Old Hollywood stars, Joan’s identity has to be altered a bit, simply because the studios back then didn’t think their real names would fit the marquees or sound good in pictures. In Joan’s case, her true name sounded a bit “odd” to the ears of Louis B. Mayer, head of the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer studio or MGM.


So, what’s her real name (or names… because she had another name as a child), then? Here, I’ll take you a trip down name lane (lol):

Lucille Le Sueur – Joan’s real name. She was of French and Irish descent. When she was just beginning at MGM, Mr. Mayer didn’t like the sound of her last name, and remarked that sounded like “sewer.” The management also thought that Lucille Le Sueur was too long for marquees to hold, so he had it changed.


Billie Cassin – When she was young, Joan’s mother married Henry Cassin, an operator of an opera house. Henry had a big impact on Joan, and she admired her new father so much that she changed her name to “Billie Cassin.” It didn’t last forever, though.


Joan Arden – To get rid of Joan’s real name, MGM held a contest to “reborn” her. Many names were submitted, but the first winner was Joan Arden. Not long enough, a lady with that name sued the studio, so they didn’t have any choice but to go with the second one, which was…

Joan Crawford – There! Haha. At first, Joan didn’t like this name, because it sounded like “crawfish.” She learned to love it, eventually, because it was in this name that she got recognized. Obviously, she carried the name for the rest of her life.


According to Donald Spoto’s biography of Joan (Possessed: The Life of Joan Crawford), other names that were considered from the contest were: Diana Gray, Joan Gray, Ann Morgan and Peggy Shaw. Well, I like Joan Crawford more, so… haha.How about y’all?


Happy blogging (and fangirling!)


(Photos from Leading Lights Autograph, Joan Crawford Best, and Legendary Joan Crawford)

To my beautiful baby, my wonderful child: Joan Crawford

Yesterday, a lot of people all over the world expressed their sincerest birthday greetings to you… including me.

Honestly, I’m still amazed by the number of adoring fans you have, even if you’ve been resting for 37 years now. (And no, I’m not talking about those “fans” who just know and acknowledge you as the “axe-swinging-wire-hanger-swishing-rodeo-quoting” lady that the movie Mommie Dearest and your ungrateful daughter Christina portrayed you to be).

For the first time, my fingers hurt because I had so many Instagram pictures to like. Normally, that doesn’t happen. But because it was your birthday, the hashtag #JoanCrawford was flooded with sooo many photos of you.

That still warms my heart until now.

I’m trying not to get too emotional every time I would post something like this, but I’m afraid my love for you won’t let me. Actually, I don’t even understand why I love you this much. This time last year, I think I don’t even know you. But ever since I discovered how amazing you are (thank you so much, documentary on Youtube), somehow, you became a part of my whole system. Now, not a day passes by that I don’t think of you. My phone is filled with your souvenirs. Your voice haunts me. You even turn up in my dreams.

And no, I’m not protesting. Haha.

I don’t know what to say anymore, so I guess I’ll just end (kind of) this post with the words, “I love you so damn much.” That’s it— my whole feelings all wrapped up in that one special sentence.

Thank you for letting me find you and for never allowing me to forget you. Thank you for always inspiring me and being my spirit guide in everything I do. Thank you for leaving such a wonderful legacy that we, your fans, enjoy in the present.

Thank you, Joan, for existing in this world. I don’t know what I would do had you not been born.

Oh, and don’t worry about that negative MD stuff that people still associate with your name. We, the real Joanuts, will take care of those haters and pretenders. 😉

Happy birthday again, my sweet angel!

Love lots,

(GIFs are all from Tumblr: Crawford in Motion, Nitrate Diva, Theodora Fitzgerald, Joan Crawfords, Weird Movie Village, Get on the Carousel and Baby Bacalling)

Joan Crawford: A Tainted Image

Joan Crawford may have passed away 37 years ago, but her legacy still lives on today.

Unfortunately, it’s not the good one.

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(Photo: quoteko.com)

Upon the release of Christina Crawford’s (her first adopted daughter) book, Mommie Dearest, Joan’s image drastically changed— from a strong woman who dazzled the silver screen to a horrible, abusive mother. She may have ended her struggles in life when she died, but this is one battle that she’ll have to fight forever… even though she can’t defend herself anymore.


(Photo: pleasurephotoroom.wordpress.com)


(Photo: fineartamerica.com)

I feel sorry for Joan (or Lucille LeSueur, her real name). Whenever I watch her videos on Youtube, I always see the comment section flooded with opinions about her being a terrifying mother. It’s always “No more wire hangers,” “Mommie Dearest,” and almost all offending adjectives that anyone could ever use to describe a person. Only few people recognize her worth, talent, and the legacy she left for future generations. For most people, she is “Joan Crawford the Beast” rather than “Joan Crawford the Actress.”


(Photo: www.spellboundbymovies.com)


(Photo: acertaincinema.com)


(Photo: www.joancrawfordbest.com)


(Photo: www.liveauctioneers.com)

I feel bad for her not just because I’m one of her adoring fans, but because the world’s being so unfair to her. She’s already resting, yet people still point out her bad qualities over the good ones. Christina’s still talking about “surviving her mommie dearest.” It’s been ages; why don’t we just give the lady the respect she deserve for bringing joy and entertainment to us, right? I always think, “Can we forget Mommie Dearest for a while and not bring it up whenever there’s a video or article about her? Can we just recognize her for being a professional actress who didn’t give less for her fans?” After all, it’s none of our business if she was, as they say, an abusive mother. We shouldn’t judge her for her personal shortcomings. We weren’t there when she was “beating” her children, so how should we know, right?


(Photo: thelastdrivein.com)

If only people could set that book aside for a moment and really look into the Joan Crawford that we (her fans) know: the angelic-faced star who delighted audiences for almost half a century; the actress who is best known for her hit films such as Mildred Pierce, Whatever Happened To Baby Jane?, Our Dancing Daughters, and more; the 5 foot 3 inches-tall movie goddess who stood taller than anyone else, with her trademark broad shoulders, thick eyebrows and full lips. The Joan Crawford who gave us some of the best films in Hollywood history.


(Photo: pictify.com)

Joan, may you rest in peace, knowing that there are still people who see you for your wonderful contribution to the film industry, not for your personal problems. We love you, Joanie!


(Photo: www.thesundaytimes.co.uk)

Happy blogging (and “fangirling”)!