Judy Garland was less than 5ft. tall
She was put on a constant diet by her mother and MGM as a teenager. She later stated that that was what she remembered most about those days.
She felt that her biggest hit, Over The Rainbow, was symbolic of her own life, dreams and wishes.
Although she was known to be an amazing performer, Judy suffered from terrible stage fright. Her third husband Sid Luft recalled her ‘standing over a toilet and violently retching’ before a concert at Carnegie Hall.
She felt that her performance in A Star is Born was her best.
Judy had a lot of famous friends. She was close to Katherine Hepburn, whom she would even stay with during bouts of depression, Lauren Bacall and Doris Day.
Adding to her already large appeal in the gay community, was the fact that she acknowledged her gay fan base during a time when homosexuality was seldom discussed and often ignored.
Judy made Frank Sinatra the godfather of her daughter Lorna Luft.
Liza Minnelli and her mother, Judy Garland, were the first mother and daughter pair to be nominated for an Oscar.
She was heartbroken when she lost her Oscar for A Star is Born to Grace Kelly. Critics agreed that it was unfair and Groucho Marx even called it ‘the biggest robbery since Brink’s’.
Although Judy did not encourage her children to enter show business, both of her daughters became entertainers. Her son lives in relative anonymity as a freelance photographer, although he has been seen attending events honoring his mother.
Both in 1993 and in 2000 Judy’s third husband Sidney Luft was accused of trying to sell her Oscar, which is forbidden by the Academy. He was ordered to pay nearly $60.000 to the Academy for his actions.
She experienced major financial difficulties near the end of her life, due to overspending, unemployment and most importantly the embezzlement of funds by her business manager. This combined with her ever growing dependency on alcohol and prescription drugs, caused her children to leave and move in with their father.
Her daughter Liza Minnelli was once married to the son of actor Jack Haley who played the Tin Man in The Wizard of Oz.
Liza Minnelli originally wanted Mickey Rooney to speak at Judy’s funeral, but because she was afraid he wouldn’t be able to get through it, James Mason did it instead.
Read more about Judy Garland’s life.