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Sybil Jason obituary

South African-born child movie star viewed as a rival to Shirley Temple

From 1935 to 1938, Shirley Temple was the world's biggest and smallest movie star. During this period, Warner Bros launched their answer to Temple in the cute, dark-haired, wide-eyed, button-nosed Sybil Jason, who has died aged 83. Jason made six feature films and four Technicolor two-reelers for the studio over these years. Unfortunately, most of her films and roles shamelessly resembled those of Temple's at 20th Century-Fox, and never equalled them in popularity. However, according to Time magazine in 1936: "Among child actresses, Sybil Jason is to Shirley Temple as Jean Harlow is to Ann Harding – less wholesome but more refreshing."

She was born Sybil Jacobson in Cape Town, South Africa, where her father ran a shoe business. As her mother was in fragile health, the girl was brought up mainly by her older sister Anita, who nurtured her precocious talent,
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Sybil Jason Dead at 83: Warner Bros.' Answer to Shirley Temple in the '30s

Sybil Jason, Warner Bros.' answer to Shirley Temple, died Tuesday, August 23, according to film researcher and author Scott O'Brien. She was 83. Born Sybil Jacobson on November 23, 1927, in Cape Town, South Africa, while still a small child she moved to Britain with her parents. Thanks to her uncle Harry Jacobson, reportedly a London orchestra leader and pianist to highly popular entertainer Gracie Fields, by the age of five Sybil was appearing in London nightclubs, where she sang, danced, and mimicked Maurice Chevalier. In 1935, Sybil caught the eye of Irving Asher, the head of Warner Bros. London studio, who had spotted her in a supporting role in the British feature Barnacle Bill. Following a successful film test, she was brought to Hollywood, where the now renamed Sybil Jason was to become Warners' answer to 20th Century Fox's box-office goldmine Shirley Temple. Jason, however, failed to catch on despite working with some
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

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