German-born Luise Rainer, the first movie actress to win two successive Oscars for best actress, died on Tuesday at the age of 104 in her home in London.
She was born in Duesseldorf and grew up in Hamburg. Rainer’s family escaped Nazi Germany and Hollywood talent scouts found her when she was a stage actress in Vienna.
She moved to the United States in 1935. Her first Academy Award was for a relatively small part in The Great Ziegfeld and the second for the role of a poor Chinese farm wife in The Good Earth, in 1936 and 1937 respectively.
Rainer identified herself as an Austrian because of the taint of being a German, but Hollywood did not give her serious roles. She moved back to Europe in 1943 and lived most of the time in Switzerland but had a plush home in London.
Rainer also entertained for U.S. soldiers during World War.