Cincinnati’s first movie superstar – silent screen actress Theda Bara – will be celebrated with a panel discussion and rare film clips and photos at the Main Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County downtown Sunday.
Between 1915 and 1920, when she made 40 silent films, Bara's popularity was "second only to Mary Pickford and Charlie Chaplin, according to The Guardian. She died of stomach cancer in 1955, at age 69.
Her breakthrough role was the sultry femme fatale in “A Fool There Was,” a 1915 silent film inspired by Rudyard Kipling's poem "The Vampire." Her performance inspired the expression "vamp" -- a woman who could entice and exploit honorable men, bringing their ruin – and made her one of the first film sex stars.