With the success of Traffic in Souls (1913), the fan and trade press recognized Ethel Grandin as a leading star of Carl Laemmle’s Independent Motion Picture (IMP) Company. The subsequent articles on Grandin tell the story of her early career, citing her family history on the New York stage as well as her debut at age six with Joseph Jefferson in “Rip Van Winkle.” Shortly before acting in films, she performed in Chauncey Olcott’s theatre company alongside Mary Pickford’s sister Lottie. Grandin’s association with the Pickford family prompted her to enter the film industry soon after Mary did. A 1914 article in the Green Book Magazine notes several parallels between Pickford and Grandin—from physical appearance to career trajectory—and suggests that Grandin “stepped into little Mary’s shoes” at IMP in 1911 (256–257).
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