Edie Sedgwick - Warhol's Superstar





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Edie Sedgwick - Warhol's Superstar
Music: The Velvet Underground - After Hours
Edith Minturn "Edie" Sedgwick (April 20, 1943 -- November 16, 1971)[1] was an American actress, socialite, and heiress who starred in several of Andy Warhol's short films in the 1960s.

Edie Sedgwick was born in Santa Barbara, California to Alice Delano de Forest (1908--1988)[2] and Francis Minturn Sedgwick, (1904--1967)[3] a sculptor, philanthropist and rancher. She was named after her father's aunt (his mother's older sister).

Sedgwick's family was long established in Massachusetts history, with members having been painted by the artist John Singer Sargent. Edie's seventh-great grandfather, Robert Sedgwick,[4] was the first Major General of the Massachusetts Bay Colony settling in Charlestown, Massachusetts in 1635.[5] Edie's family later originated from Stockbridge, Massachusetts where her great-great-great grandfather Judge Theodore Sedgwick had settled after the American Revolution. Theodore Sedgwick was the first to plead and win a case for the freedom of a black woman, Elizabeth Freeman, under the Massachusetts Bill of Rights that declared all men to be born free and equal.[6] Sedgwick's mother was the daughter of Henry Wheeler de Forest (President and Chairman of the Board of the Southern Pacific Railroad, and a direct descendant of Jesse de Forest whose Dutch West India Company helped to settle New Amsterdam.)[7] Jesse de Forest was also Edie's seventh-great grandfather.[8]. Her paternal grandfather was the historian and acclaimed author Henry Dwight Sedgwick III; her great grandmother, Susanna Shaw, was the sister of Robert Gould Shaw, the American Civil War Colonel; and her great-great grandfather,Robert Bowne Minturn, was a part owner of the Flying Cloud clipper ship, and is credited with creating and promoting Central Park in New York City.[9] And her great-great-great grandfather, William Ellery, was a signatory of the United States Declaration of Independence.[10]

She was a cousin of the actress Kyra Sedgwick - Kyra's father and Edie were 1st cousins.

In March 1965, Sedgwick met artist and avant-garde filmmaker Andy Warhol at Lester Persky's apartment. She began going to The Factory regularly in March of 1965 with her friend, Chuck Wein. During one of those visits, Warhol was filming his interpretation of the novel, A Clockwork Orange, aptly titled, Vinyl. Despite Vinyl's all-male cast, Warhol put Sedgwick in the movie. She also made a small cameo appearance in another Warhol film, Horse, when she entered towards the end of the film. Although Sedgwick's appearances in both films were brief, they generated so much interest that Warhol decided to create a vehicle in which she would star.

The first of those films, Poor Little Rich Girl, was originally conceived as part of a series featuring Edie called The Poor Little Rich Girl Saga. The series was to include Poor Little Rich Girl, Restaurant, Face, and Afternoon. Filming of Poor Little Rich Girl started in March of 1965 in Sedgwick's apartment. The first reel shows Sedgwick waking up, ordering coffee and orange juice, and putting on her makeup in silence with only an Everly Brothers record playing. Due to a problem with the camera lens, the footage on the first reel is completely out of focus. The second reel consists of Sedgwick smoking cigarettes, talking on the telephone, trying on clothes, and describing how she had spent her entire inheritance in six months.

On April 30, 1965, Warhol took Sedgwick, Chuck Wein and Gerard Malanga to the opening of his exhibit at the Sonnabend Gallery in Paris. Upon returning to New York City, Warhol asked his scriptwriter, Ron Tavel, to write a script for Sedgwick. The result was Kitchen, starring Sedgwick, Rene Ricard, Roger Trudeau, Donald Lyons and Elecktrah. After Kitchen, Chuck Wein replaced Ron Tavel as writer and assistant director for the filming of Beauty No. 2, in which Sedgwick appeared with Gino Piserchio. Beauty No. 2 premiered at the Film-Makers' Cinematheque at the Astor Place Playhouse on July 17.


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