Shirley Temple, that rare child star who not only survived Hollywood but went on to a successful post-acting career, died at her California home from natural causes late Monday, surrounded by family and caregivers. She was 85.
From the BBC’s obituary:
With her ringlets, dimples and precocious talent, America’s “Little Princess”, charmed audiences during the 1930s Depression.
For four years, she was Hollywood’s biggest box-office star representing the kind of sweet, innocent girl everyone wanted as their daughter.
And after a period of domesticity she re-emerged as a successful businesswoman and politician.
Temple was the country’s biggest box office draw by age 10, and President Roosevelt even credited her with boosting American morale during the Great Depression. After burning out and attempting a few short-lived comebacks, Temple disappeared from the limelight for nearly 20 years. She would return to public life as Shirley Temple Black. After a failed Congressional bid, she was appointed Representative to the 24th United Nations General Assembly (by Richard Nixon). She was also appointed U.S. ambassador to Ghana (by Gerald Ford) and later Czechoslovakia (by George H.W. Bush), and became the first woman to serve as Chief of Protocol of the United States in 1976.
Also, she once told The Simpsons to “f*ck off.”