Dorothy Sebastian was an American film and stage actress.
Sebastian was born and raised in Birmingham, Alabama. In her youth she hoped to be a dancer and later a film actress. Her family frowned on both ambitions, however, so she fled to New York at the age of 15. Upon her arrival in New York City, Sebastian’s southern drawl was thick enough to “cut with a knife”. She followed around theatrical agents before returning at night to a $12-a-month room, after being consistently rejected.
Her first contact in Hollywood was Robert Kane, who gave her a film test at United Studios. She performed in George White’s Scandals with Joan Crawford and Anita Page for a popular series of MGM romantic dramas including Our Dancing Daughters and Our Blushing Brides. Sebastian also appeared in 1929’s Spite Marriage, wherein she was cast opposite her then-lover Buster Keaton.
Sebastian went into semi-retirement in the mid-1930s after marrying Hopalong Cassidy star William Boyd. They wed in Las Vegas, Nevada following a romance which began on a set at Pathe Pictures. After their divorce in 1935, Sebastian attempted a comeback, appearing in much smaller parts than years before. In 1947, Sebastian married Miami Beach businessman Harold Shapiro to whom she remained married until her death.