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Garbo rumors


What is a rumor? Wikipedia says: "It's an unverified account or explanation of events circulating from person to person and pertaining to an object, event, or issue in public concern".
Greta Garbo is well known all over the world, a woman who will not be forgotten. A myth, a symbol, an icon, a monument. She has already been one as long as she lived and she still got the same esteem and prestige today and in future.
That's why such an extraordinary person will always be involved in specs. Generations of movie goers, cineasts, fans, admirers or just curious people who like to read the yellow press or to listen to dirty gossip, are demanding for quaint details of Garbo's life. And they have always been served. In the past, in the presence and in future.
We have collected some rumors about Greta and her life. The Latin saying means: FAMA ERRAT. A rumor isn't right. But is that true? Mostly yes. But nor always. It's up to you, believe it or not. Maybe yes, maybe not. Who knows? Anyway, maybe Greta is smiling from heaven or even giving her Ninotchka laughing when she listens to the gossip what is going to be revealed. Greta, let's laugh together....


Garbo's relative

Anna Sundstrand
Model and singer Anna Sundstrand, born February 22, 1989, is said to be a relative of Garbo. Apart from this, nothing else is known. More infos are hard to find.

Copyirght by youtube

She was the original member of the Swedish pop group PLAY, formed in 2001, by Laila Bagge and Anders Bagge; co-managed by Mathew Knowles and signed to SONY Columbia Music in United States.

Play with Anna being only 13 years old, received an RIAA gold certification for the group's self-titled mini-album in June 2002. Between 2001 and 2004 Play releases 4 albums, 10 music video, appears on 20 major TV shows like: Good Morning America, Regis and Kelly Live, TRL and Miss Teen America.

In 2006 she released her solo album.

More about her  HERE  and  HERE!

Joyce Guerovich
Joyce is a Peruvian model and TV-host. She claims to be a great granddaughter of Garbo’s niece. Her great-grandfather was GG´s first cousin, Fray Juan Blas Gustaffson.

Copyirght by

More info  HERE!


Garbo's Half-Sister
- The Mystery of Christine Schmitz -

Shortly after Garbo died, the designation of her estate went unchallenged for some time.  Garbo's sole heir was her niece Gray Reisfield. A man claimed to be Greta's brother illegitimate son, Sven (Åke) Fredriksson wanted to break her last will and some time later, in late 1990 or early 1991, a German “half-sister” appeared - Christine Schmitz from Frechen/Cologne.

Christine Schmitz 
Christine Schmitz as a young woman and in later years

Mrs Schmitz told reporters, that her friends and family members always said, when a Garbo film was on TV,  that she looked a bit like Greta. One day, Christine did a research in her family and her old aunt told her an amazing story....

Her father had an affair with Garbo's mother?
Christine's old aunt told her  that her father Hermann Mück was on a Sweden journey one day and lived as a Subtenant in the Gustafsson house in Södermalm. Mück, was a brick-layer, born 1883 in Frechen by Cologne/Germany and later worked in Stockholm for some time.

Christine's father and Garbo's mother

He said that he had an affair with the unhappy married Anna Lovisa Gustafsson and that he was the real father of Greta Lovisa Gustasson. Mück told his sister (the aunt of Mrs. Schmitz) that Anna Lovisa didn't want to separate from her husband Karl Alfred and so Mück returned to Cologne and started a family on his own. His daughter Christine was born December 18, 1925.

Was she Garbo's half sister?
One day, in the early 1980s, Mrs Schmitz had the courage and wrote Greta a letter about this unbelievable story. The first reaction was that Mrs Schmitz received a big flower bouquet from Garbo and the wish to send her pictures and photos of her family and her father. Mrs Schmitz told that story to German reporters.

Interview on German TV

Schmitz visited Garbo
After exchanging letters, Mrs Schmitz said that she was invited by Garbo  to visit her at 450 East Fifty-second Street in New York. Mrs Schmitz said that during the two  visits, September 1983 and March 1985, a real sisterly friendship developed.

Schmitz in New York  

Did Garbo gave her jewles?
Schmitz told reporters that Garbo gave her real jewels as a present. Than the actress told her that her mother, Anna Lovisa, told her the story about her "real" father when she was 18 years old. Mrs Schmitz was interviewed for German TV and  showed reporters the "Garbo-Jewels".

Garbo's jewels?  

Garbo wanted her as her Sole heiress?
Mrs Schmitz told reporters that Garbo even wanted Schmitz as the sole heiress of her estate. Schmitz than showed a handwritten copy of Garbo's Last will.

The handwritten letter  

Garbo wanted to buried in Germany?
Christine Schmitz also claimed that Greta told her that, after her death, she wanted to be buried, were her “real” father was born, in Frechen/Cologne.

The Garbo Monument

For years, even until her death in 1997, Schmitz fought to fulfill Garbo's wish and teh promise she gave to her - to bury her in Frechen. A gravesite was chosen and a monument with Garbo's like-ness was designed Sculptor Höhnen but Garbo's Urn stayed in New York.

Mrs Schmitz at the Graveyard in Frechen  

Mrs Schmitz wrote to President Bill Clinton
Mrs Schmitz even wrote to American President Bill Clinton and told him that it is a shame what is happening with Garbo's Urn in New York. She told him about Garbo's  last wish to be buried in Germany. She never got an answer.

Mrs Schmitz writing to President Clinton

Mrs Schmitz appeared on TV and in Magazines
Mrs Schmitz appeared on TV, in News Reports and magazines. She even was a guest in the well known Late Night show  “Gottschalk”, but all her efforts failed.

Schmitz on TV  

The "Garbo-Bench"
In memory of her big “sister”, Mrs Schmitz even instigated a “Garbo-Bench” in front of the church in Einruhr (Eifel/Germany) were she worked as a young girl. Schmitz told reporters that Garbo was so impressed, when Mrs Schmitz told her about the Eifel. The Eifel is a low volcanic mountain range in western Germany.


Mrs Schmitz released, in memory of her sister, every year an Advertisement in Cologne's biggest Newspapers.

Advertisement in Cologne's biggest Newspapers  

Was she Garbo's half sister?
The story never appeared in the USA print or TV Media. No Garbo books ever mentioned her. Was it totally made up or true? Mrs Schmitz died in August 1997. She is buried at the place she wanted Garbo to be buried.

Mrs Schmitz died in August 1997.  

More Pictures

* Special thanks to Bea from Germany for helping to collect the infos and photos for this section *


DVD rumors

From 2003 - 2009 there were several rumors that GG's films will appear on DVD.

The Painted Veil – was rumored to be released in the fall of 2006 and later planned to be released as a bonus DVD in a special package of the 2007 'remake' version starring Naomi Watts.

A Woman of Affairs – was rumored to be released in the fall of 2006.

Love – In late 2006, it was rumored that it would appear as a bonus on a DVD release for the late 1940s, Anna Karenina version with V. Leigh.

Susan Lenox – A rumor in spring 2006 was, that the film would appear in a Clark Gable and his leading ladies DVD Box set.

Die Freudlose Gasse – A rumor in early 2007 was, that it would be soon released on DVD via a German company.

Mata Hari (Uncensored version) – In early 2007, we announced that the uncensored version is still excisting. Soon Internet rumors appeared and some suggested or 'heard', that it would soon appear on the TCM DVD series, Forbidden Hollywood Volume 2 (USA 2008).



Garbo - A Spy in WW II?

“When my husband asked her about that, she didn't deny it.”
- Garbo's niece, Gray Reisfield, mid 1990s -

The following re-written informations were taken from:
Garbo - by Barry Paris, Greta Garbo: A Life Apart – by Karen Swenson and Conversations with Greta Garbo - by Sven Broman

In her 1928 MGM film, The Mysterious Lady (USA 1928), Garbo played Tania Fedorovna, a Russian spy charged with stealing secrets from the Austrians and she some years later she played Mata Hari (USA 1931) who was the most famous woman spy ever but was Garbo was once a real spy in WW II?

Garbo in The Mysterious Lady

Garbo in Mata Hari

World War II
World War II, or the Second World War, was a worldwide military conflict which lasted from the late 1930s to 1945. World War II was the amalgamation of two conflicts, one starting in Asia, 1937, as the Second Sino-Japanese War and the other beginning in Europe, 1939, with the invasion of Poland. World War II was the most widespread war in history, and countries involved mobilized more than 100 million military personnel.

Total war erased the distinction between civil and military resources and saw the complete mobilization of a nation's economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities for the purposes of the war effort; nearly two-thirds of those killed in the war were civilians. For example, nearly 11 million of the civilian casualties were victims of the Holocaust, which was largely conducted in Eastern Europe.

Garbo as real-life Mata Hari
It is said that there is evidence to suggest that Garbo played a small role in the Allies' wartime intelligence apparatus. Due to its neutrality, Sweden was a hotbed of espionage activity on all sides, and Hitler's war machine – especially in the early years of the struggle – depended on the crucial assistance of the Swedish steel industry and its agents.

The real Mata Hari:
Margaretha Geertruida Zelle (1876 – 1917)

British spy chief William Stephenson maintained that Garbo identified important Nazi collaborators in Stockholm to British agents there.  Author Charles Higham, after examining a thousand declassified US government files, said Garbo became involved with the British secret service in 1939 through director Alexander Korda, a middleman for recruiting celebrities to the war effort.

She reportedly served as gobetween for the British with shipping magnate Axel Johnson and members of the Swedish royal family. She was also credited with helping obtain the release of physicist Niels Bohr from occupied Denmark to Sweden and later to America, where he worked on the Manhattan Project. If those claims are true, they are a redemptive manifestation of Garbo as real-life Mata Hari.

Greta's feelings about the war
Like everything else in her life, Greta kept her feelings about the war to her-self. She did not attend rallies choreographed to sell war bonds; she did not appear on the USO circuit or at the Hollywood Canteen.

Harry Crocker and Salka Viertel often found themselves defending Garbo in the press regarding her “silent support” of the war effort; Crocker even hired a clipping service to keep track of what was being said and to correct “any mistaken ideas.”

A 5,000 $ check war-orphans
Known for a fact is that on 12 December 1939 she wrote a 5000 dollar check to the Finnish Relief Fund for its war-orphans program during the ‘Winter War' in which Stalin overran Finland. But the donation was made under a strict condition of anonymity, and as the war progressed there was increasing criticism in the press of her apparent uninvolvement and her failure to join the great majority of other stars in war-bond drives and in entertaining the troops.

A GI's request for her autograph
One published story claimed she had even refused a GI amputee's request for her autograph – and it was true. Actor-director Orson Welles was a witness to that most mindless faux pas. As neighbours in Brentwood during the war, he and Garbo were good acquaintances and spent a few evenings together.

One night, he told biographer Barbara Leaming, they emerged from a restaurant to find ‘a soldier in uniform without a leg, standing on his crutches with an autograph book and she refused it. “That is how dumb she was! She refused him, in front of my eyes!”

War bonds
Many critics complained about Garbo while she didn't want to sell war bonds like many other Hollywood stars. Salka Viertel came to her defense: “If anyone has made the suggestion that Garbo isn't selling bonds because her sympathies are on the wrong side, it's too preposterous even to be discussed. There are some people who just cannot face crowds, no matter for what cause. Garbo is such a person. Instead she buys many bonds herself [and] has done her utmost to help me in my work of rescuing anti-Fascist refugees from Europe.”

Leif Leifland
Former ambassador Leif Leifland believes that both Greta Garbo and Ingrid Bergman “were anxious to show their sympathy with the Allied force. Garbo wasn't a spy, he says, but she cooperated with the Allied effort.America was her second home. I don't find it surprising that Greta Garbo was anxious to prove her allegiance.”

Patriotic radio message
Despite the urging of the State Department, Swedish diplomats, and friends such as Swedish artist Einar Nerman – she refused a request to tape a patriotic radio message to be broadcast to Scandinavia.

Neutrality would not have been the issue, but rather Greta's belief that it was not her place to articulate what other people must do; Sweden and America had their own political leaders who were better equipped for that.

A “fan letter” from Adolf Hitler
Conversely, Garbo revealed to friends that she had actually received a “fan letter” from Germany's ruthless dictator. “I wonder how it would feel to stand face to face with a man like Hitler,” she mused.

Hitler admired Camille
Early in World War II, Garbo was told that Adolf Hitler loved her films and admired Camille so much that he allowed its wide distribution in Germany, despite the ‘racial impurity' of director Cukor. The Führer reportedly “retained” a private copy of the film confiscated by his customs officers.

Garbo in Camille

Garbo to shot Hitler
Garbo, in turn, reportedly said she wanted to meet him and try to convince him to stop the war. She felt the power of her personality could alter the course of history, but “if not – I could shoot him”.  Who would dare to search Greta Garbo on a special invitation from the Führer?

The romantic idea that Garbo was willing to martyr herself by assassinating Hitler sounds apocryphal, but her friend Sam Green confirms it: “Once she said, ‘Mr Hitler was big on me. He kept writing and inviting me to come to Germany, and if the war hadn't started when it did, I would have gone and I would have taken a gun out of my purse and shot him, because I'm the only person who would not have been searched.'

That's a direct quote. She said it to me over dinner, and it was so out of character. It wasn't her habit to make up such a story to stop a dinner party. Or maybe not so out of character. As a child, she had had fantasies that ‘I might shorten the life of a cruel king and replace him by a romantic knight'”.

Considering her abhorrence of brutality of any kind, the scheme was uncharacteristically bold – especially from a woman who fretted that nothing she might do could possibly make a difference.

She neither confirmed nor denied
Some acquaintances would later take this intriguing suggestion as proof that Garbo had agreed to spy or carry messages for the Allies. It was a romantic notion. Nevertheless, MGM's Mata Hari was typically sly when asked to comment on such rumors; she neither confirmed nor denied them. Most of these stories emanated from a book about the British Secret Service entitled A Man Called Intrepid.

Canadian William Stephenson – code name Intrepid – helped to set up a special office coordinating activities between the British Secret Service and its counterpart in the States, and was known to use key entertainment industry figures as covers. Charles Higham, author of several books on wartime espionage, maintains that Garbo was asked by Stephenson to help keep an eye on Axel Wenner-Gren.

Axel Wenner-Gren
Axel Wenner-Gren was a Swedish entrepreneur and one of the wealthiest men in the world during the 1930s. During the war the censors would even open private letters. It may be more than coincidence, if you are inclined to be suspicious, that the only one of Garbo's letters to her friend Hörke Wachtmeister that they opened was one in which she wrote about Axel Wenner-Gren.

In the autumn of 1989 Garbo was being discussed in a very delicate context. Sweden's ambassador to London, Leif Leifland, published a book intended to exonerate Axel Wenner. Wenner-Gren, the industrial magnate, from the suspicion that he had worked for Hitler during the war: Svartlistningen av Axel Wenner-Gren (The Blacklisting of Axel Wenner-Gren).

The book lists documents from Allied intelligence organizations that were believed to prove that Garbo had been used as an agent in order to get inside information on what Wenner-Gren was up to. In common with David Niven and Noel Coward, she was supposed to have been made use of to get facts about the Swedish businessman's activities. Quite simply, Garbo was presented as a spy for the Allies. It is said that Garbo had met Axel Wenner-Gren, who loved being surrounded by celebrities.

But according to Garbo her contacts with him were of a superficial nature.Olof Lagercrantz tells a much saucier story about Garbo and Wenner-Gren, concerning a favourite experience of Bertil Malmberg, the writer and Academician: “I saw Greta Garbo naked.” Malmberg and Garbo and a few others were guests of the Wenner-Grens at Häringe Castle outside Stockholm.

Early one morning after a late night, Malmberg saw Garbo from his window, walking on her own down to the deserted swimming-pool in the garden. Garbo took off all her clothes there and jumped naked into the water, little knowing she was being observed Maybe it was Bertil Malmberg who was the spy.

Her first assignment as a “spy”
Her first assignment would have been the trip to Nassau from Miami in February 1940. “For the rest of the war, she would devote herself to the allied cause,”  he declared. “She would risk her life involving herself in the mass rescue of Jews from Denmark, and would bring to bear a strong influence upon King Gustav of Sweden ...”

Stephenson's original claim was much more vague. “As a member of the Stephenson-Churchill group, [Garbo] provided introductions and carried messages,” his Intrepid biographer recorded.

When Stephenson called on her royal admirers, he was quietly arranging escape routes – especially for [Denmark's pioneering nuclear physicist] Professor Niels Bohr ...” For his part, Stephenson made no connection between the actress and “tainted” Swedish businessmen such as Axel Wenner-Gren or Axel Johnson. “I would have died of shame if I had ever had anything to do with spying,” Greta said later.

But would she have carried messages? First, there is no indication that Garbo ever left the United States between 1938 and 1946. However, in the 1960s, after meeting U.N. secretarygeneral Dag Hammarskjöld, she would confide that there were “some things that hap, pened a long time ago that we had to talk about. We spoke Swedish to each other,” she told Raymond Daum. “It was very painful for me ... but I can't tell you that story.”

Dag Hammarskjöld
In later years, Garbo made puzzling references to Dag Hammarskjöld, the Swedish diplomat and United Nations secretary-general, who had intimate knowledge of Allied intelligence operations in Scandinavia.

She and Hammarskjöld subsequently met in New York City, after which she told Ray Daum, “There were some things that happened a long time ago that we had to talk about. We spoke Swedish to each other. It was very painful for me – but I can't tell you that story.

Garbo told Sven Broman
Garbo's friend Broman once rang Garbo in New York and told her what he had read. At the same time he  pointed out that it was bound to be seen as an honourable deed to have helped to find out information that led to the downfall of Hitler's Germany.

“I would have died of shame if I had ever had anything to do with spying,'‘ Garbo said. “But it is made clear you were on the right side,” Nerman answered . “That makes no difference. No one asked me to do anything like that. No, you can deny it, Mr Broman,” Garbo replied.

Did you know?
In Dublin on September 2005, a international conference given at the Irish Film Institute in order to celebrate Garbo's centennial. Among the speakers there was film historian Kevin Brownlow who presented his new TCM documentary on the Divine called Garbo.

He spoke, among others, about interviewing Garbo's family (her niece etc) about Garbo for the documentary and said that among the surprising things he learned was the family's insistence (and he said that they had proof as well) of Garbo's intense activity in famour of the Allies during World War II. He said that he was amazed, but he simply could not fit all that info in a TCM documentary so he chose not to include that, since it would almost seem incredible to some people.

Garbo - the real spy
Juan Pujol Garcia (1912-1988) was a Double Agent For Britain During WWII. His codename was GARBO due of his mystic and because people who knew him said that he was without doubt the finest actor they have ever seen.


Juan Pujol Garcia aka "Garbo"

Was Garbo in England 1942?
There is a small Hotel in a rather remote part of England, called "The Wheatsheaf", in Carperby, North Yorkshire, which advertises itself as having a SECRET!!

They claim that Garbo stayed there in 1942. In the Hotel's own words she stayed during a break from performances at nearby Catterick Garrison, the UK Army's largest base. When enquiries were made as to what evidence was available to substantiate the story of Garbo's stay, i.e. a visitors book, etc...

The reply was:
"Greta Garbo stayed here with Henry Hall in Jan 1942 after entertaining troops at Catterick. We have the original register with entries and have independently verified these. We only have a photograph of Greta around that time but not here at the Wheatsheaf.”

It's an interesting story but unfortunately there is no indication that Garbo ever left the United States between 1938 and 1946.

Garbo – A Biography – by Barry Paris, Greta Garbo: A Life Apart – by Karen Swenson and Conversations with Greta Garbo – by Sven Broman

Thanks to Kata and Bea


Anne Frank was a Garbo fan?

Anne Frank was a Jewish girl born in Germany. She gained international fame posthumously following the publication of her diary which documents her experiences hiding during the German occupation of the Netherlands in World War II.

For decades there is this rumor that she had a picture of Garbo on her wall in her room. This rumor is actually true. Anne had many photos on her wall.

Anne Frank
Anne Frank

Those pasted pictures on the wall of her room in the hidden attic have been restored in 2008. It took a decade to fix the 60-year-old-plus photographs of celebrities, most clipped from a Dutch women's magazine. Copies have been hanging in their place.   Apart from Garbo  other images include the Lane Sisters, Sonja Henie and Britain's Queen Elizabeth.

Anne Frank's room

The room from Peter van Pels

The restored photos are now hanging behind climate-controlled glass in the Anna Frank House, Amsterdam.


Garbo's daughter

In the late 1970s or early 1980s, Swedish magazines reported from a young woman who claimed she was the daughter of Garbo and George Schlee. Her name was Liv Gustaffson and she was living in Switzerland. It is unknown what happened with the woman and how this story was burn.


Garbo had a child which died at the age of five?

An old rumor that writer Norman Zierold (Garbo, 1969) started in 1969, came up again in 2012 when writer David Bret brought it back to ‘life’. Writer Bret quoted Zierold of course and wrote in his 2012 released book (Greta Garbo: Divine Star) that he also believed this ‘child’ story.

So what did Zierold say?
He said that an (unnamed) author friend told stated that he worked for years with Garbo on her autobiography. He claimed that GG told him that Stiller was the obsession of her life and that there was a child which died at the age of five.

At the time of Stiller’s departure for home, he reportedly begged Greta to come with him. She asked permission of MGM to break her contract but was told no. She stayed and Stiller went, leaving her only with sad memories and guilt.

In 1964, when this autobiography was finally completed, Garbo withdrew permission to have it published. There were too many frank revelations, she felt, and now was not the time to air them.

What did David Bret say?
Bret asked himself if she could have been pregnant during her infamous MGM (October 1926 to June 1927) ‘strike’ and ‘break’? Was a child the reason for her 6 month MGM absence? He then quoted Zierold and had further thoughts and analyses about it which we don’t really want to repeat here.

Norman Zierold: Garbo (1969)
David Bret: Divine Star (2012)


Garbo's famous laugh was dubbed

For decades there is this rumor that it was not really Garbo's 'laugh' in her classic film Ninotchka.

During filming, Garbo laughed quite heartily and uproariously but emitted no sound. The star was unable to articulate so much as a titter. The sound department solved the problem in the final mix by raising the volume of the laughter of the people around her.


Did Garbo have a clipping service?

For sixty years, writers held an Olympiad of Superlatives to describe her impact on twentieth-century culture, but Garbo never cared what people thought or wrote about her. Or did she?

Her narcissism was a doubled-edged sword. In her heyday, after all, despite the professed loathing of publicity, "she was crazy about pictures of herself," said one MGM photo-studio hand. For Clarence Bull alone, she sat for more than four thousand frames without complaint. It was okay for people to adore her from afar. Post-retirement, she engaged a clipping service and read most everything written about her.

But unlike Marlene Dietrich, who did the same, Garbo did so out of curiosity, not litigiousness "She was like a junkie on a drug he hates but can't give up," says Green. "In her case, it helped fill up the time and was more proof of base humanity”.

Her family denies she had a clipping service, but friends say manila envelopes full of articles invariably awaited her in the stack of mail upon her return from trips. A remark she made to Sam Green in the fall of 1975 tends to support the claim: "Somebody photographed me, evidently ... I was told that a whole mess of photographs appeared. I see them as rude. I don't know why I didn't this time."

Source: Garbo book


Garbo and Edvard Munch's The Scream

[Greta Garbo and Munch painting]

One rumor is that this famous pose of Garbo, is reminiscent of Edvard Munch's The Scream.


A GARBO TV rumor - By Russ J Graham

The edit that re-wrote history:

What really did happen that day in 1939, when the BBC Television Service closed down “for the duration of the conflict”?

The popular memory of 1 September 1939 is that, in the middle of the cartoon Touchdown Mickey, just as Greta Garbo says, “Ah tank ah go home”, the transmitter cut out and television went off the air for nearly seven years.

“I tank ah kiss you” – Mickey’s Gala Premiere

The staff dispersed – into the forces, into radar development or back into radio. Alexandra Palace was mothballed and that was that. This simple rendition of the “facts” is nice: the drama of the signal being cut marking the start of a world-changing war. But there’s a problem: it can’t possibly be right.

So the conclusion is:

after the end of Mickey’s Gala Premiere and following some test signals, television went off the air for nearly seven years.

Thanks to Kata


Did Greta record a song?

One day I heard from Martin Shaw from Holland. I think he is an collector of old Swedish musical recordings. He told me that he found a possible recording of Garbo, she may had recorded back in Sweden 1938. I was surprised and after a long time I tried to find out more and contacted Martin.

His Mother was the actress Gerda Lundequist, the great Swedish actress and Garbo's co-star in Gösta Berling saga. She married Martin's English father in Stockholm in 1939.  He wrote me about the many small recording studios in Stockholm/Sweden in late 1920s.

They made acetates, primitive recordings on aluminum discs or for private use. One of them was a studio called PAM Aktiebolag by Pam Samson. The studio was located at Bakom Dramaten or behind the Royal Dramatic Theatre,  were Greta participated quite often on stage in the early 1920s. Many great theatrical names made recordings as "tryouts". That was for  their theatrical performances at the Dramaten.

A Garbo recording?

From the early to late 1930s, PAM Aktiebolag was the only “Shop+Recording studio” combination. Samson never had any connection with the regular commercial record industry. He made and sold many amplifiers on his own. It is said that Pam's material was taken over to Nordiska musikförlaget (Nordic Music Company).

Martin got in contact with this Music Company, in the hope to find any archive material they may have from this era. After a while he found some interesting recordings. He listened carefully and  believed that this woman's voice was the one of Greta.

Than he brought the recordings to the national centre for cinematography in the Netherlands (The Filmmuseum in Amsterdam) and let them to the CD he made of one of the acetates. Their comments were that the CD was remarkable, a very weak sound but an interestingly characteristic voice. They also thought it was Garbo. The songs were: Avé Maria & Silent Night (both in swedish) and two other Swedish folk songs. Further suggestions have been that the acetates should be professionally transcribed.

They must use the latest techniques be reworked to recreate the right accoustic effect. Martin believes that Greta may have recorded the four songs in 1938. H e belives that this was when she was in Sweden with Leopold Stokowski. The accompaniment of the songs, is only piano. "Maybe that was Stokowski?" said Martin. I heard them and doubt personally that it is Garbo.

We even never read anything that comes even close to it. We hope  that Martin will allow me that i can put the online. So we all can hear it.Of course this is not Greta but it' s still great to imagine ;-)

Special thanks to Martin from Sweden


Garbo refused a GI amputee's request for her autograph

One published story claimed she had even refused a GI amputee's request for her autograph. It is said that actor-director Orson Welles was a witness to that.

Orson Welles

As neighbors in Brentwood during the war in 1942/43, he and Garbo were good acquaintances and spent a few evenings together. One night, he told biographer Barbara Leaming, they emerged from a restaurant to find ‘a soldier in uniform without a leg, standing on his crutches with an autograph book and she refused it. "That is how dumb she was! She refused him, in front of my eyes!", Leaming wrote.

Some say that this mindless faux pas is actually true but can we really believe Welles?

Source: Karen Swenson - A Life Apart


Katherine Hepburn and Garbo had an affair?

Another silly affair rumor appeared in the book Katharine the Great. The author (Darwin Porter) claims that both legends had an affair together. On page 570, the author claims that Kate had sex with many female Hollywood stars, including Garbo, Marlene and.... Mercedes de Acosta!

You can read excerpts from Kate the Great and this rumor  HERE!


Various rumors

Is Garbo a Nazi? (early 1940s)

Was Garbo a spy? (1980s)

Valentine Schlee called in a Greek Orthodox priest to exorcise Garbo's presence from her New York apartment (1960s)

Garbo played Monopoly with Queen Silvia and King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden (late 1980s)

A jealous Russian countess wanted to poisoning Garbo! (mid 1930s)

Is Garbo turning blind? (mid 1970s)

Garbo wants a to spend her last years in a swedish Retirement home ! (mid 1970s)

No place for Garbo in a swedish Retirement home! (mid 1970s)

Garbo's back pain problems! Now she gets help from a miracle healer (mid 1970s)

Thanks to Werner and Bea


Various love affairs with celebs

Garbo was rumored to have had various love affairs with many celebs.
Like Marlene Dietrich, Louise Brooks, Johnny Weismüller etc.

Some of those rumors you can find  HERE!


Garbo having had an affair with Josephine Baker

Another Internet rumor is that Garbo once had an affair with entertainer Baker.

Garbo does Baker on the Eiffel Tower!

Though she famously just "vanted to be let alone," cross-dressing screen star Greta Garbo had lesbian liplocks with just about every everyone -- including Marlene Dietrich and Louise Brooks. But the most interesting (and salacious) story is the one involving the beautiful, banana-wearing singer/dancer Josephine Baker. According to legend, the two sultry stars got hot and heavy -- at the foot of the Eiffel Tower itself!

The story's possible, since it's pretty certain they both liked girls (Garbo was written about by several of her lovers including novelist Mercedes da Acosta, while two of Baker's "rainbow tribe" of adopted children have written of her bisexuality). But there's never been any proof that they got hot and heavy with each other.

The juicy story is probably just a twist on Garbo's movie Ninotchka, where she fell in love with a man at the tower -- which she described in the film as "Such a vaste of electreeeecity! "

You can find the article   HERE!

Thanks to RubyRed


Michael Jackson's secret meeting with Garbo?

It is said that Garbo waxed lyrical about Michael Jackson in an almost girlishly adoring way. “He is a handsome and so musical, I never miss seeing him on television if I can help it. What a star he is!”

In the 1980s, the The Globe magazine wrote: Michael Jackson met Garbo secretly. He wore a beard, sunglasses and cap so nobody can recognise him. He went to her apartment for a secret meeting.

Thanks to Dave


Garbo in Garbo Talks?

The 1984 film Garbo Talks was d irected by Sidney Lumet and written by Larry Grusin. It was the tale of fatally ill Anne Bancroft, whose dying wish is to meet Garbo. It contained clips from Garbo's greatest films, and many believed it to be a true story.

Movie scene

In any case, it is not true – as many Garbo-philes insist – that she appeared as herself (back to the camera) at the end of Garbo Talks. The actress who did so, uncredited, was Betty Comden.

Betty Comden

The film was fiction but had some rough equivalents in real life. “She was compassionate about people who were ill to an unusual degree,” recalled her friend Jane Gunther.

More Info  HERE!


Greta Garbo, Marlene Dietrich, Errol Flynn and Thomas Mann playing tennis?

One rumor is that during the 1940s, Greta Garbo, Marlene Dietrich, Errol Flynn and Thomas Mann were playing tennis in Hollywood.

The son of a wealthy businessman, owned the Brentwood Country Club at one point, and during the 1940's, the family lived in Hollywood.

Gregory (the son) described looking out at the family's tennis court one day and seeing, no lie, Greta Garbo, Marlene Dietrich, Errol Flynn and Thomas Mann playing tennis. Three of the most beautiful people in the world and a man who wrote about beauty.

Thanks to Nici


Garbo, Gilbert and the lie detector

One strange rumor is that one day in 1928, lie detector inventor William Marston (see the picture) was measuring  the reaction of both Garbo and John Gilbert as they saw Flesh and the Devil.

This picture is a photomontage.

Thanks to Andre


Was Garbo a man?

This is the most stupid Garbo rumor. In the late 1980s, some strange news magazine quoted Garbo: "After my death, a big secret will be revealed!".

The magazine guessed that she may was a man.


Was Garbo at the American premiere of Camille?

A rumor was that At Louis B. Mayer's insistence, Greta reluctantly agreed to attend the Hollywood  premiere of Camille , on December 12, 1936 at the Plaza Theatre in Palm Springs.

She wore pajamas under a fur coat. She waved to her fans, walked  through the front door, and out the back without bothering to watch the film.

Thanks to Kata


The Greta Garbo, Clark Gable and Cary Grant TV show

One rumor is that in  1991, the TV station IBS had the idea of  a last-ditch attempt to resurrect their ratings. The show Cary and Clark, was going to be based on the premise that Cary Grant, Clark Gable, Greta Garbo, and Megan Mullally are roommates living in modern-day Brooklyn. But the idea was an unmitigated success.

It gave birth to a surge of interest in movies from the forties through the sixties. No teenage girl's locker could be found without a picture of Grant or Gable pasted on the door. Women adored them and men wanted to be them. It was an exciting time for the entire country. It is not known if this was really planned or just an internet rumour.

Thanks to Annie


Was Garbo bisexuell or lesbian?

One of the most famous GG rumor is of course the question about her sexuality. Was she straight or bisexual? Some even wrote and/or think that she was a lesbian. Well, as always there is no proof that Garbo had love affairs with both sexes, woman and men.

When the rumor did first came up?
Between 1930 and 1931. But remember Bisexuality was fashionably chic in sophisticated Hollywood circles during this period. “Everyone had to be a lesbian in the thirties” told Garbo’s friend Sam Green to Karen Swenson (Garbo -  A life Apart, 1997), “even if they didn’t want to be. They certainly dressed up and went to lesbian bars – it was the thing to do. And it was the logical step in women’s liberation.”

Her friendship with Mercedes de Acosta was a main reason also supported this ‘Lesbian rumor’ in the early 1930s.

Garbo’s letters from Mercedes deAcosta
Mercedes was a Spanish-American poet, playwright, costume designer and socialite, she knew many famous celebrities of the show business. She had rumored love-stories with actresses like Marlene Dietrich, Eleonora Duse, Isadora Duncan. But it is said that the woman she loved most of all was absolutely Garbo.

In 1960 Mercedes De Acosta sold her Garbo papers to the Rosenbach Museum and library of Philadelphia that had to keep them sealed until 10 years after the death of Garbo. So in the year 2000, the so called "love letters" of Garbo to Mercedes d'Acosta to be unsealed, it came as great disappointment for many reporters and even some fans,  that no lesbian attitude could be detected.

It is fact that the letters gave no evidence of a love story! One day Mercedes told Cecil Beaton (both were friends of Garbo) that, to her knowledge, Greta wasn’t “so far a Lesbian but might easily be one.” (Source: Karen Swenson - A life Apart).

Read more about the letters  HERE!

What did Garbo’s family say?
In 2005, Scott Reisfield, Garbo's grand-nephew declared during promotion for Garbo: TCM Original Documentary (Bird and Brownlow), that to say that Garbo was bisexual or lesbian would be just conjection.

He also said that she clearly had a set of relationships with some very interesting men over time, and he thinks that is the actual focus of her interest.


Andy Warhol

When he was young, Andy Warhol saw Garbo at a party and drew a paper flower for her. Without saying a word, he pressed it on Garbo. What did G do?......she left it behind, all crumpled up.

So Warhol signed it and entitled it: "Flower Crumpled by Greta Garbo."


Garbo goes nude?

Department store, Bullocks Wilshire, was  built in the 1920s to cater to the city's car culture. It drew some of its character from its show biz clientele.

Chic and sophisticated Bullocks Wilshire was spelled with an apostrophe from the time the store opened in 1929 until the 1970s, when the punctuation was removed to distinguish the place from run-of-the-mill Bullock's stores.

Many film stars visited the shop and it said that Garbo was one of them. The rumour regarding Garbo was that she asked a clerk to help her choose a swimsuit. When they went into the fitting room, Garbo removed her coat — which was all she was wearing.

Thanks to Isaura


Marlene Dietrich in The Joyless Street?

For Decades there was this rumour that Marlene Dietrich played a minor role in this film.  A dark-haired woman waiting in the butcher shop line is often mistaken for Marlene.

A close-up of "Marlene"?

But it is actually the German actress Hertha von Walther. She had a much larger role in the original uncut version of the film.

Marlene, Asta Nielsen and Greta.

This is the scene popularly believed to feature Marlene Dietrich as one of the extras in line with Garbo and Asta Nielsen.

Marlene as she looked around Joyless Street.

When the film was filmed, Dietrich was at home nursing her threemonth - old daughter, Maria.

More about the film  HERE!


Garbo naked?

This German dancer was often mistakenly credited as Garbo. The naked woman was Martha Kreis from Düsseldorf in Germany and not GG.

The story appeared in the late 1980s when Swedish opera singer Richard Lindskog discovered and bought this picture for 200 Kronor at a Swedish flea market. He was sure it was Garbo on the beautyful photo and some "experts" even agreed to this andsaid "Hips and hands are Garbo's".

The photography was then sold to European magazines for very big amount of money. A German woman then saw the picture in a magazine and said trhat it was not Garbo but Martha Kreiss, a German dancer and actresss from Düsseldorf in Germany. In the beginning of the 1940s, Martha had a contract in Stockholm's China theatre and this photo was used for promotional reasons.

What happened to Martha is a mystery.

Thanks to Bea.


Did Garbo had a son?

One silly rumor in 1969 was that Garbo had a son. She was photographed in France accompanied by a young man who was in fact the son of a friend.


Garbo marries with 80?

In the early 1980s or very late 1970s, some magazines reported that Garbo wants to marry a 30 years younger man.

The man she was photographed with walking in New York was her good friend Sam Green.


Did Garbo had an abortion?

It is rumoured that Garbo's hiatus from October 13, 1926 to April 18, 1927 could have been because of an abortion.

It is not known if this is true and if she was really pregnant and John Gilbert was the father.

Garbo Facts
Greta the "Soap-Girl" 
Greta at the PUB 
Garbo - A Spy in WW II? 
Garbo References in Pop Culture 


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