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Tuesday, February 19, 2013


Many famous people struggle with the mangling of their names. In the earlier days of Hollywood, actors were instructed to change ethnic-sounding names to make them more "acceptable" to a WASP audience, and, to make then pronounceable. This "renaming" continued for many years.

Here's a little quiz. Can you name the star who started life with this name (answers below):

1. Alphonso D'Abruzzo

2. Allan Stewart Konigsberg

3. Frederick Austerlitz

4. Cherilyn Sarkisian La Piere

5. Doris von Kappelhoff

6. Isidore Demsky

7. Dennis Schlachta

8. Goldie Jean Studlendegehawn

9. Krishna Bhanji

10. Eugene Maurice Orowitz

11. Bernadette Lazzara

12. Natalie Hershlag

13. Leonard Franklin Slye

14. Margaret Mary Emily Anne Hyra

15. Jerome Silberman

The issue of name changes is undoubtedly touched upon in Hollywood Remembered: An Oral History of Its Golden Age by Paul Zollo [384.8 ZOL] or Women in Hollywood: From Vamp to Studio Head by Dawn B. Sova [384.8 SOV], or any of the film history books found in our collection.


1. Alan Alda
2. Woody Allen
3. Fred Astaire
4. Cher
5. Doris Day
6. Kirk Douglas
7. Dennis Franz
8. Goldie Hawn
9. Ben Kingsley
10. Michael Landon
11. Bernadette Peters
12. Natalie Portman
13. Roy Rogers
14. Meg Ryan
15. Gene Wilder

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