Margaret O’Brien

She first walked onto an MGM sound stage and into the hearts of millions in 1941, at the age of four, in Babes on Broadway with her melodramatic rendition of “Don’t Send My Brother To the Chair”—but most notably, her first film marked the beginning of her lifelong friendship with legends Mickey Rooney and the late Judy Garland. The following year, Margaret gained international acclaim in the wartime motion picture, Journey for Margaret (1942), with Robert Young, and the little girl who not only could cry on command (but knew how far to allow the tear to trickle down her cheek) embarked upon the greatest career by any child actor in Hollywood history.
With over seventy motion pictures and television appearances, countless honors, and a Juvenile Academy Award for Outstanding Child Actress of 1944, Miss Margaret O’Brien remains a legend in her own time. Among her most memorable roles—Adele, Mr. Rochester’s ward in Jane Eyre (1943), with Orson Welles and Joan Fontaine; Lady Jessica in The Canterville Ghost (1944), with Charles Laughton and again with Robert Young; Selma, Edward G. Robinson’s daughter, in Our Vines Have Tender Grapes (1945); Beth in Little Women (1949), with Elizabeth Taylor; and Mary in The Secret Garden (1949), with Dean Stockwell and Herbert Marshall. But it was MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS (1944) as “Tootie” Smith, Judy Garland’s youngest sister, that endeared her to generations of movie-goers the world over—most specially, when Judy so poignantly sang, for the first time, “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” to Margaret.