Netflix’s Hollywood: The heartbreaking true story of Peg Entwistle and her tragic death

Peg moved to England with dreams of becoming a Hollywood star (Picture: Rex)

Peg Entwistle’s tragically short life has become part of film industry legend, and is now playing an integral part of Ryan Murphy’s new series, Hollywood.

The 24-year-old defined a legacy after throwing herself from the Hollywoodland sign back in 1932, after several attempts at trying to break into the movies.

But what do we know about her besides that? And what caused her to make such a heartbreaking decision?

Here’s everything you need to know about Peg’s life…

Who was Peg Entwistle?

Peg Entwistle – born Millicent Lillian Entwhistle – was a British actress born in 1908.

It’s not officially known when her family emigrated to America, but her father, Robert Symes Entwistle, was noted by 1913 as an actor on a Broadway production.

After her father’s death in 1922, caused by a hit-and-run motorist, Peg started performing in her uncle’s plays in Boston, Massachusetts.

The actress tragically took her own life after losing one of her roles (Picture: Unknown)

A biographer of Bette Davis later claimed that the soon to be legendary actress saw her in theatre, and was inspired to be an actress because of her.

While performing in The Great God Brown, she met Robert Keith, and the pair were married in 1927.

However, she filmed for divorce in 1929, citing domestic cruelty. It was reported at the time that Keith may have also had a child that he didn’t tell her about until after they were married.

Moving to Los Angeles in a bid to crack the film industry,

After finding some success as a Broadway star, Peg made her way to Los Angeles in a bid to break into Hollywood.

She was initially lined up to star alongside Billy Burke in a play called The Mad Hopes, in order to draw attention of Hollywood producers, but it failed to do so.

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Her only film role was in movie Thirteen Women – but the film studio decided to push back its release.

It was shortly after this that she told her uncle she was meeting friends, and was never seen again.

Tragically, she has become famed for her death, throwing herself from the H of the Hollywoodland sign in Los Angeles on 16 September, 1932.

She was just 24 years old.

Peg had found success as a stage actress – pictured here in 1925’s The Wild Duck – but dreamed of Hollywood fame (Picture: Unknown)

Her body was found shortly after by a hiker, who called in the death without ever revealing who they were.

She left behind a suicide note in her handbag that read: ‘I am afraid, I am a coward. I am sorry for everything.

‘If I had done this a long time ago, it would have saved a lot of pain. P.E.’

Thirteen Women was eventually released that October.

What is Hollywood about and where can I watch it?

Ryan Murphy’s latest series Hollywood is a semi-fictional tale about life in 1950’s Hollywood – dubbed the Golden Age of Cinema.

It follows the story of Jack Castello (David Corenswet), a wannabe actor who has his sights set on getting his name in lights.

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During the seven-episode run, he encounters some of the major names of the time – including Rock Hudson (Jake Picking), notorious agent Henry Willson (Jim Parsons) and Hattie McDaniel (Queen Latifah) as he tries to make his name.

Getting his big break on a picture based on the life and death of Peg Entwhistle, will Jack finally be able to make it in Tinseltown?

Hollywood launches 1 May on Netflix.

Need support? Contact the Samaritans

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