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They're Known For Being The Golden Girls, But Their Lives Before The Show Were Wild

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Golden Girls is one of those classic shows that everyone remembers watching over and over. The show was so clever and funny, with the best cast possible.

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The women on this show were the absolute highlight. They each had a hilarious personality that fit so perfectly together. The actresses themselves are also incredible women. Their lives before and after the show were super fascinating.

Ever wonder what the Golden Girls did before they were famous?

Estelle Getty - Sophia Petrillo

Even though she played the oldest character on Golden Girls, Estelle was actually younger than half of them! Both Betty White and Bea Arthur were born in 1922 but Estelle was born in 1923. There was a lot of makeup involved to age her up.

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She was born in New York City where her family owned a glass store but she always knew she wanted to go into acting. She took acting and dancing lessons in high school and participated in a lot of theater.

She even tried doing stand-up comedy in upstate New York but apparently the sexism in the industry made it impossible for her to succeed.

She married a businessman named Arthur Gettleman when she was only 24, using a form of his name as her stage name. She started with small parts in theater productions, proving her comedic skills once and for all.

NBC

She was cast in Golden Girls while on tour with the play "Torch Song Trilogy" and the rest is history!

Rue McClanahan - Blanch Deveraux

She was born in Oklahoma in 1934 and was a very studious child. She was a part of the honor society in her school and later graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Tulsa.

NBC

Her Bachelors is a double major in German and theater.  She started acting in 1957 in off-Broadway plays and made her way to Broadway proper by 1969.

Her first big television success was on the soap opera Another World. After that she was cast in the show Maude with her future Golden Girls co-star Bea Arthur.

Apparently this long standing working relationship didn't mean they were friends though. While McClanahan was good friends with Betty White, apparently Arthur was not a fan of either of them. McClanahan admitted that “Bea and I didn’t have a lot of relationship going on," when interviewed.

Click to the next page to learn about Bea Arthur's time in World War II and what everyone's favorite human, Betty White, did before she was a star.

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