Judy Garland as Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz (1939)
Judy Garland expresses her thanks to readers in Modern Screen (an American Magazine) in 1950. She was 28 years old at the time.
This is a thank you note.
At a time when I've been gossip's victim and the target of a thousand lies, you people have stood by me. I won't ever forget that.
You've judged me not on the basis of headlines, rumor and innuendo but on my performances as an actress and entertainer.
Ever since the release of my last picture, Summer Stock, thousands of you have had the kindness to write me. You've congratulated me, encouraged me, and pledged me your support. And for all this - let me repeat - I'm eternally grateful.
In as much as it is impossible for me to reply individually to your more than 18,000 letters, I'm using this space in Modern Screen to answer those questions most frequently asked.
I have a responsibility to you friends. Rather than let you be misguided by the flood of nonsense printed about me by reporters and uninformed writers who know none of the facts, I intend to fulfill my responsibility by telling you movie-goers the truth.
I am not quiting motion pictures. Movies are my life's blood. I love making motion pictures and always have ever since I was a little girl.
I do not intend, however, to make any films for the next six months. I'm just going to relax, take things easy, and regain my peace of mind.
For a while I expected to go to Paris with my daughter, Liza, and my husband, Vincente Minnelli - but his studio has decided to film all of An American in Paris in Hollywood, and since he is directing that picture and plans shortly to direct the sequel to Father of the Bride, we all plan to remain in California.
I love to work, I love to sing, I love to act - I get restless when I don't - and it's entirely possible that I will do a few broadcasts with Bing Crosby or Bob Hope before six months are up.
My health is fine. As I write this, I've just returned from a vacation in Sun Valley and Lake Tahoe. I'm sun-tanned, I weigh 110 pounds, and my outlook on things is joyful and optimistic.
Many of you have written and asked what was wrong with me in the past.
The honest answer is that I suffered from a mild sort of inferiority complex. I used to work myself up into depressions, thought no one really cared about me, no one outside my family, that is.
Why I should have ever gotten depressed, I certainly don't know. You people have proved to me that I've got thousands of friends the world over, that you care about my welfare and my career.
It's perfectly normal for people to have their ups and downs. I know that now, but a year or so ago, these depressions of mine used to worry me, and the more I worried about them, the lower I felt.
Anyway, all of that is gone and done with. The slate of the past is wiped clean. Insofar as I'm concerned, the world is good, golden and glorious. My best years and my best work lie ahead of me, and I'm going to give them everything I've got.
Many of you have asked if I realized how closely you followed my career and behavior. I certainly do, and that's why I want all of you to know, especially the youngsters, that I'm not in the slightest embittered about Hollywood and that I still think a motion picture career is one of the finest ambitions any girl can have.
It means hard work and it has its pitfalls but so has every other occupation.
If my daughter, Liza, wants to become an actress, I'll do everything to help her.
Of course, being a child actress and being raised on a studio lot is not the easiest adjustment a young girl can make. You don't go to baseball games or junior proms or sorority initiations, but every success has its sacrifices, and these are the ones a very young girl must make if she wants a career at a very early age.
The girl who finishes her schooling, however, and then wants to become an actress is facing a thrilling, rewarding career.
If I had to do it all over again, I would probably make the same choices and the same errors. These are part of living.
A lot of fanciful stories have depicted me as the victim of stark tragedy, high drama, and all sorts of mysterious Hollywood meanderings. All that is bunk.
Basically, I am still Judy Garland, a plain American girl from Grand Rapids, Minnesota, who's had a lot of good breaks, a few tough breaks, and who loves you with all her heart for your kindness in understanding that I am nothing more, nothing less.
Thank you again.