Born Gene Eliza Tierney, 19th November (incorrectly reported as 20th November in New York Times, leading to subsequent confusion!), in Brooklyn, New York. Father Howard Sherwood Tierney (successful and prosperous insurance broker, Irish origin), mother Belle Lavina Taylor (ex gym teacher). Her initials G.E.T. will subsequently become her motto - 'the Get Girl' (as in, she gets what she wants...)
Childhood spent with family including grandparents, elder brother Howard Jr ('Butch') and younger sister Patricia ('Pat'), first in New York and later in Connecticut (Green Farms, Fairfield County). Schools: St Margaret, Waterbury and Unquowa school, Bridgeport. Learns horse-riding. First poem ('Night') published in school magazine (the writing of verse will subsequently become an occasional pastime during rest of life). Declares herself a great admirer of Katharine Hepburn. Christmas 1936 spent in Oslo.
Beginning of two-year period spent in Europe, including Swiss finishing-school (Brillantmont, Lausanne). Meets Douglas Fairbanks Sr. Learns to speak perfect French; friends include Maria Sieber, daughter of Marlene Dietrich. Writes poetry, paints, travels around Europe.
Returns to USA: Farmington school. Visits Warner Bros studios, where Anatole Litvak advises her to become an actress. 24th September, coming-out party in Fairfield Country Club announced in The Times. Bored with 'society' life. Decision to become an actress.
Works on Broadway. First theatrical role in 'What a Life' - carrying a bucket of water across the stage! First critical review in Variety magazine: "Miss Tierney is certainly the most beautiful water-carrier I've ever seen!". Works as photographic model in John Power's, New York. Appears in 'Mrs O'Brien Entertains', and is praised by critic in New York Times. Also appears in successful production 'The Male Animal'. Photo appears in Life, Harper's Bazaar and Collier's. Father forms company ('Belle-Tier') to promote her. Signed up to Columbia studios. Meets Howard Hughes, who attempts (unsuccessfully) to seduce her, and subsequently remains a lifelong friend. Has operation to remove appendix. A cameraman advises her to lose a little weight - "a thinner face is more seductive" - whereupon she writes off to Harper's Bazaar for a slimming diet, which she will follow for the next 20 years. (weight: 117lb/58 kilos, height: 5 ft 7in/1m73)
Meets Lucille Ball, Robert Morley and other well-known stars of the day. Signed on to 20th Century Fox after being 'spotted' by Darryl F. Zanuck during her stage performance in 'The Male Animal'. According to her account, Zanuck was impressed by her stage performance: later, in the course of a dinner-dance in the Stork Club, he saw a display of elegance and social grace which made him whisper to his companion "forget the girl in the play. See if you can sign that one"... and was surprised to learn that the girl in the theatre was the same one he now saw dancing so elegantly! After watching a private showing of her first film ('The Return of Frank James') and being shocked by her own 'Minnie Mouse' vocal timbre, Gene starts to smoke heavily in order to lower voice register. This unorthodox method will subsequently prove its worth. On the advice of her dentist, she refuses to have her teeth 'remodelled' according to the dictates of Hollywood fashion and custom. April, learns about father's infidelity. This leads to subsequent estrangement.
The Return of Frank James.
January, announces intention to marry actor Robert Sterling; parents disapprove, they split up. Starts going out with Oleg Cassini, designer working for Paramount, with playboy reputation (whom she had met late 1940). Parents disapprove. 1st July, elopes with Oleg Cassini, married in civil ceremony in Las Vegas: Gene uses earrings as wedding rings. Oleg loses job, financial difficulties ensue. Gene subsequently manages to keep finances afloat by indulging in a little property speculation. Appears on the cover of 'Life' in costume worn for 'Sundown'.
America enters war: Oleg Cassini enlisted, officer in Fort Reilly, Kansas. Gene works in Hollywood Canteen. Father divorces and remarries. 'Shanghai Gesture' attacked by (American) critics: Oleg Cassini responds by destroying the statuettes which appear in the film and which had been given to Gene as a present. Gene is guest of honour of Groucho Marx in a spectacle for marines in San Francisco.
The Shanghai Gesture
Son of Fury
Rings on her Fingers
In June, Gene comes down with German measles while pregnant. 15th October, Daria born in Washington - deaf and dumb, cataract, requires total blood transfusion, diagnosed as mentally retarded. Sculptor Anton Martin announces intention of making life-size statue of Gene.
Heaven Can Wait
Visits Pearl Buck for advice about handicapped child.
A Bell for Adano
Leave Her to Heaven
Spring, meets J.F. Kennedy while shooting 'Dragonwyck'. Love at first sight. Domestic arguments with Oleg Cassini. Warm relationship with newly-divorced Tyrone Power, while making 'The Razor's Edge', leads to press speculations. 19th November in New York, Gene and Clifton Webb jointly celebrate premiere of 'The Razor's Edge' (in Roxy Theatre) and their birthdays. Guests include Duke & Duchess of Windsor and Frank Sinatra. Later, in hotel, Tyrone Power gives Gene a silk scarf with 'Love' embroidered on it.
The Razor's Edge
J.F. Kennedy tells Gene he can never marry her owing to political ambitions. Daughter Daria goes into Langhorn Institute, Pennsylvania, to be looked after. Gene is heart-broken. Falls down stairs and fractures ankle-bone just before filming of 'The Ghost and Mrs Muir' due to begin. Shooting held up. Reconciliation with Oleg Cassini.
The Ghost And Mrs Muir
19th November: birth of Christine (Tina).
The Iron Curtain
That Wonderful Urge
Meets Noel Coward in London while making 'Night And The City'.
Night and the City
Where the Sidewalk Ends
The Mating Season
On the Riviera
The Secret of Convict Lake
Close to My Heart
Falls ill during filming of 'Way of a Gaucho' - pneumonia. Husband refuses to join her. Divorces Oleg Cassini. Meets Ali Khan in Buenos Aires - unimpressed.
Way of a Gaucho
Clark Gable falls in love with Gene (unrequited). Meets Ali Khan again...
Never Let Me Go
Well-publicised affair with Ali Khan ends when speculations about a possible forthcoming marriage are quashed by the Aga Khan: "if he marries her, I shall refuse to see either of them again".
Worried about mental health. Consults psychiatrist. Admitted to 'the Harkness Pavilion', New York, and later to 'Institute for Living', Hartford, Connecticut. Electroconvulsive 'therapy' (27 sessions). Tries to run away but is caught and led back.
The Left Hand Of God
Police are called when neighbour sees Gene about to jump from the ledge of a building. Admitted to 'Menninger Foundation', Christmas Eve.
Released from Menninger Foundation in August/September, after a treatment which included, in its final phases, working as an anonymous sales girl in a large department store (where she was spotted by a member of the public, resulting in some sensational newspaper headlines). Meets Howard Lee in Aspen, Colorado.
Readmitted briefly to Menninger Clinic.
Gene sends Kennedy telegram of congratulations on his election victory - though she had voted for Nixon. 11th July, marries Howard Lee in Aspen. TV appearance in 'Journey to a Wedding', episode of General Electric Theatre.
Is offered part in 'Return To Peyton Place', but has to abandon it owing to pregnancy - which ends in miscarriage. Preminger offers part in 'Advise And Consent' - despite misgivings of insurance company.
Gene invited to the White House together with husband, after private showing of 'Advise and Consent' in Washington.
Advise And Consent
Toys in the Attic
The Pleasure Seekers
TV appearance in 'Daughter of the Mind' and 'Conspiracy of Silence' (episode of 'FBI').
Gene's mother dies.
TV appearance in 'Scruples'.
Death of husband Howard Lee.
July, records TV interview at home in Houston.
Guest of honor at the International Film Festival of San Sebastian, Spain.
Gene passes away on November 6th in Houston, Texas (emphysema).