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Gwili Andre
Born Gurli Andresen
4 February 1908(1908-02-04)
Copenhagen, Denmark
Died 5 February 1959 (aged 51)
Venice, California, U.S.
Years active 19321942

Gwili Andre (February 4, 1908 – February 5, 1959) was a Danish actress who had a brief career in Hollywood films.


Film career

Born Gurli Andresen in Copenhagen, Denmark, Andre came to Hollywood in the early 1930s with the intention of establishing herself as a film star. She appeared in the 1932 RKO Studio films Roar of the Dragon and Secrets of the French Police and began to attract attention for her striking good looks. These films provided her with starring roles playing against such established actors as Richard Dix, ZaSu Pitts and Frank Morgan, and RKO began using her glamorous looks to promote her. A widespread publicity campaign ensured that her name and face became well known to the American public, but her next role in No Other Woman (1933 opposite Irene Dunne), was not the success the studio expected. Over the next few years she was relegated to supporting roles which included the Joan Crawford picture A Woman's Face (1941). Her final role was a minor part in one of the popular The Falcon series, The Falcon's Brother in 1942.

She did not return to the screen, although she spent the rest of her life trying to orchestrate a comeback. As she faced further rejection, she found solace in alcohol.

Private life

Andre was married twice. Her husbands were:

  • Stanislaw Mlotkowki, realtor (died 1950), married circa 1929; separated 1930; divorced 1935.
  • William Dallas Cross Jr, engineer, married circa 1940; divorced 1948. One son, Peter Lance Cross (born 1944).


On the day after her 51st birthday, she committed suicide by self-immolation. Alone in her apartment in Venice, California, Andre surrounded herself with reams of publicity photographs and press clippings, all of which represented the career she had expected but had not achieved. Setting the paper alight, she allowed herself to be consumed by the fire, sustaining the injuries which caused her death.


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