Greta Garbo

Greta Garbo

Movie Actress

Greta Garbo was a Swedish-American actress. Regarded as one of the greatest screen actresses, she was known for her melancholic, somber persona, her film portrayals of tragic characters, and her subtle and understated performances.

Full Name
Greta Lovisa Gustafsson
Sep 18, 1905
Apr 15, 1990
5′ 7″
Net Worth


Greta Garbo was born Greta Lovisa Gustafsson on September 18, 1905 in Stockholm, Sweden. She was the youngest of three children and the daughter of Karl Alfred Gustafsson, who worked as a laborer, and his wife Anna Lovisa Johansdotter, who was a laundress. Garbo's parents were both from poor backgrounds and their marriage was unhappy. At age nine, her father died from tuberculosis and her mother raised Garbo and her siblings alone.

Garbo started performing in theater productions at age 14 to help support her family. At 19 years old she made her film debut in the Swedish movie The Story of Gösta Berling (1924), which won international acclaim. This success led to a contract with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) in Hollywood and she released four films in 1927. Her performance in Flesh and the Devil (1926) earned her great praise and established her as one of the leading actresses of the time. 

Garbo became known for playing strong female characters with a mysterious air about them that captivated audiences worldwide. Her most famous roles include Mata Hari (1931), Grand Hotel (1932), Anna Karenina (1935), Camille (1936), Ninotchka (1939) and Two-Faced Woman (1941). She also gained attention for rejecting offers from other studios, choosing to stay exclusively with MGM until 1942 when she retired from acting at age 36. 

Garbo never married or had any children but lived a reclusive life away from the public eye until her death on April 15th, 1990 in New York City at 84 years old. She is remembered for being one of the greatest actresses of all time due to her unique performances that continue to inspire film lovers today.

Life Timeline

<div id="" class="timeline-item"><p id="" class="timeline-year">1905</p><h3 id="" class="timeline-title">Greta Garbo is Born</h3><p id="" class="timeline-text">Greta Garbo was born on September 18, 1905 in Stockholm, Sweden.</p></div>

    <div id="" class="timeline-item"><p id="" class="timeline-year">1920s</p><h3 id="" class="timeline-title">Begins Acting Career</h3><p id="" class="timeline-text">Garbo began her acting career as an extra in Swedish films and eventually moved to Hollywood.</p></div>

    <div id="" class="timeline-item"><p id="" class="timeline-year">1925</p><h3 id="" class="timeline-title">Makes Hollywood Debut</h3><p id="" class="timeline-text">Garbo made her Hollywood debut in the silent film The Torrent.</p></div>

    <div id="" class="timeline-item"><p id="" class="timeline-year">1932</p><h3 id="" class="timeline-title">Receives 1st Oscar Nomination</h3><p id="" class="timeline-text">Garbo was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress for her role in Grand Hotel.</p></div>

    <div id="" class="timeline-item"><p id="" class="timeline-year">1940s</p><h3 id="" class="timeline-title">Retires From Acting</h3><p id="" class="timeline-text">Garbo retired from acting at the age of 35 and did not appear in a film for nearly 40 years.</p></div>

    <div id="" class="timeline-item"><p id="" class="timeline-year">1990</p><h3 id="" class="timeline-title">Receives Honorary Oscar</h3><p id="" class="timeline-text">Garbo was awarded an honorary Academy Award for her contributions to the art of motion pictures.</p></div>

    <div id="" class="timeline-item"><p id="" class="timeline-year">2004</p><h3 id="" class="timeline-title">Greta Garbo Dies</h3><p id="" class="timeline-text">Greta Garbo dies at the age of 84 in New York City.</p></div>

Why We Love Them

<div id="" class="whywelove-item"><h3 id="" class="whywelove-title"><span class="whywelove-leter">A.</span> She Was a Pioneering Actress</h3><p id="" class="whywelove-text">Greta Garbo was one of the first actresses to break out of traditional roles and portray complex characters with depth and emotion on the silver screen. She brought a level of realism to her performances that had never been seen before.</p></div>

<div id="" class="whywelove-item"><h3 id="" class="whywelove-title"><span class="whywelove-leter">B.</span> She Was an Iconic Style Inspiration</h3><p id="" class="whywelove-text">Greta Garbo’s iconic style has inspired generations of fashion designers, from Coco Chanel to Jean Paul Gaultier. Her signature look included tailored suits, berets and large sunglasses that are still fashionable today.</p></div>

<div id="" class="whywelove-item"><h3 id="" class="whywelove-title"><span class="whywelove-leter">C.</span> She Was a Reclusive Star</h3><p id="" class="whywelove-text">Greta Garbo's enigmatic personality made her mysterious and desirable in the eyes of the public. After she retired from acting in 1941, she became increasingly reclusive and refused to speak with any reporters or even make public appearances.</p></div>

Interesting Facts

<div id="" class="facts-item"><h3 id="" class="facts-title"><span class="facts-number">1.</span> First Academy Award Nomination</h3><p id="" class="facts-text">Greta Garbo was the first actress to receive an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress with her performance in the 1930 romantic drama, Anna Christie.</p></div>

    <div id="" class="facts-item"><h3 id="" class="facts-title"><span class="facts-number">2.</span> Turned Down Numerous Roles</h3><p id="" class="facts-text">After the success of Anna Christie, Greta Garbo went on to reject many roles including the lead in Gone with the Wind and the title role in The Wizard of Oz.</p></div>

    <div id="" class="facts-item"><h3 id="" class="facts-title"><span class="facts-number">3.</span> Fluent in German, English, and Swedish</h3><p id="" class="facts-text">Greta Garbo spoke three languages fluently: German, English, and Swedish. She began learning English when she arrived in the United States at the age of 22.</p></div>

    <div id="" class="facts-item"><h3 id="" class="facts-title"><span class="facts-number">4.</span> Was a Successful Model Before Acting</h3><p id="" class="facts-text">Before becoming an actress, Greta Garbo worked as a successful model and appeared in several commercials.</p></div>

    <div id="" class="facts-item"><h3 id="" class="facts-title"><span class="facts-number">5.</span> Retired From Acting at 35</h3><p id="" class="facts-text">Greta Garbo retired from acting at the young age of 35, making her one of the youngest actors to retire from Hollywood.</p></div>


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