"Once you become a star, you are always a star," Mae Murray once stated, and she fully believed in that credo for the rest of her life -- despite having made her final film in 1931, and the final successful one in 1925. Publicized by Florenz Ziegfeld in the 1910s as the "Girl With the Bee-Stung Lips," Murray had made a professional debut of sorts singing "Comin' Through the Rye" in a 1906 Lew Fields concoction entitled About Town. She was in the Follies two years later and earned heaps of publicity when substituting for an ailing Irene Castle in Irving Berlin's Watch Your Step (1910). Adolph Zukor of Paramount spotted her in the 1915 version of the Ziegfeld Follies, in which she impersonated Mary Pickford while being chased around by comedian Ed Wynn, and signed her to a screen contract.
Although she attempted to get out of her obligations to Paramount on several occasions, Mae Murray took to Hollywood -- and the Hollywood lifestyle -- like a fish to water, starring in scores of melodramas with titles such as Sweet Kitty Bellairs (1916), Princess Virtue (1917), Her Body in Bond (1918), The Delicious Little Devil (1919), and On With the Dance (1920), all of them popular and all of them more or less variations on the classic Cinderella tale. Her most frequent director was Robert Z. Leonard and she married him during a break from What Am I Bid? (1919) (having previously divorced New York playboy Jay O'Brien mere days after their highly publicized wedding). The union with Leonard lasted a bit longer and produced Tiffany, a company created to present her in the best light possible.