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Maria Ouspenskaya
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    (July 29, 1876-December 3, 1949)
    Studied singing at the Warsaw Conservatory
    Studied acting at Adasheff's School of the Drama in Moscow
    Received practical training as an actress touring the Russian provinces
    Joined Moscow Art Theatre (1911)
    Came to America with the Moscow Art Theatre and remained after they returned to Moscow (1922)
    Founded the School of Dramatic Art in New York (1929)
    Turned to movies to fund her academy (1936)
    Received two supporting Oscar nominations for the films Dodsworth (1936) and Love Affair (1939)
    Acted in 'Dodsworth (1936),' 'Conquest (1937),' 'Love Affair (1939)' and played the gypsy in the 'The WolfMan (1941)'
    She smoked.
    She had a thick accent.
    She studied drama under some of acting's greatest method teachers and is still willing to be in a film called 'The Wolfman.'
    She set herself on fire after falling asleep with a lit cigarette in her mouth.
    She received an oscar nomination for 2 films, one in which she was on screen for only 4 minutes, the other she was on for 10 minutes.
    She is heavily imitated (especially in her role as the gypsy in 'The Wolfman').
    She only switched to acting from singing at age 30+.
    She studied acting under Russia's best method actors and brought the lessons learned to actors in America.
    She hated communism.
    She died from a stroke three days after a lit cigarette set fire to her bed.
    She taught actor John Garfield and acting gurus Stella Adler and Lee Strasberg.

Credit: Fandango

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