Carol Burnett frequently parodied Swanson's role of Norma Desmond in Sunset Boulevard in skits on her variety show.
Swanson is buried in the Episcopal Church of the Heavenly Rest in New York City.
So convincing was Swanson in her role as Norma Desmond in Sunset Boulevard that people frequently asked her if she had a body in her swimming pool.
Once guest starred on an episode of Alfred Hitchcock entitled Behind the Locked Door.
Swanson once appeared on The Tonight Show on the same night as John Lennon and Paul McCartney. FWIW, she was not a fan of the Beatles or their music.
In the mid-1920's, Swanson was the highest paid actress in Hollywood.
Swanson feuded with fellow silent screen star Pola Negri in the 1920's.
Swanson's first "talkie" was The Trespasser for which she received an Academy Award nomination.
Swanson was cast in the role of Norma Desmond in Sunset Boulevard after several other actresses, including Pola Negri and Mae West, had rejected the role.
Swanson was barely 5 feet tall.
In 1971, Swanson appeared on Broadway in the play Butterflies Are Free.
Swanson claimed first husband Wallace Beery used to beat her severely and that these beatings once caused her to miscarry.
In her autobiography, Swanson on Swanson, she admitted to having two abortions.
Swanson was a vegetarian.
Swanson was nominated three times for an Academy Award for Best Actress: 1951 for Sunset Boulevard, 1930 for The Trespasser, and 1929 for Sadie Thompson.
Swanson has two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame: one for movies at 6748 Hollywood Boulevard and one for TV at 6301 Hollywood Boulevard.
Swanson had one daughter, Gloria, with second husband Herbert Somborn and a younger daughter, Michelle, with fourth husband Michael Farmer. In 1923, she and Somborn adopted a son named Joseph Patrick.
Swanson was married to:
Wallace Beery (1916-19)
Herbert K. Somborn (1919-25)
Henri de la Falaise (1925-31)
Michael Farmer (1931-34)
William Davey (1945-46)
William Duffy (1976-her death)
Swanson appeared as herself in the movie Airport 1975.
Swanson's first color film was Three for Bedroom C released in 1952.
Clips from Swanson's unfinished 1929 film Queen Kelly were shown in Sunset Boulevard. Sunset Boulevard co-star Erich Von Stroheim directed the earlier film.
Swanson's trademark in films was her varied and exotic wardrobe.
Swanson's film debut was in 1914 as an extra in The Song of Soul.
40 years before Sunset Boulevard became a musical, Swanson wanted to bring it to the stage in a musical format but Paramount Studios refused to give her the rights.
Swanson played Charlie Chaplin in a skit when she guest-starred on The Carol Burnett Show. She had also done a bit as Chaplin in Sunset Boulevard.
Swanson's father was a soldier.
In 1980, Swanson appeared on ABC's 20/20 and talked about her affair with family patriarch Joseph P. Kennedy, Sr. Naturally, the Kennedy family trashed her in a rebuttal with Teddy Kennedy referring to Swanson as an old whore.
Swanson twice appeared as the Mystery Guest on episodes of What's My Line?
Swanson appeared as herself on an episode of The Beverly Hillbillies.
Gloria Swanson was nominated for a 1963 Golden Globe as "Best Actress in a Television Series" for her performance on Burke's Law.
Swanson: I have decided that when I am a star, I will be every inch and every moment a star.
Swanson: All creative people should be required to leave California for three months every year.
Swanson: I think all this talk about old age is foolish. Every time I'm one year older, everyone else is too.
Swanson: I've given my memoirs far more thought than any of my marriages. You can't divorce a book.
Swanson: After 18 years in pictures, I could not be intimidated because I knew where all the skeletons were buried.
Swanson: All they had to do was put my name on a marquee and watch the money roll in.
Swanson: Life is 95% anticipation.
Swanson: At 26 I felt myself a victim rather than a victor in the realm of pictures.
Swanson: Because I take care of my body, it doesn't look like the body of a woman my years.
Swanson: By the time I was 16 my mother had turned me into a real clotheshorse.
Swanson: Every victory is also a defeat.
Swanson: Fame was thrilling only until it became grueling. Money was fun only until you ran out of things to buy.
Swanson: I don't want to spend the rest of my life playing Norma Desmond over and over again.
Swanson: I don't like surgeons cutting into me the minute I have a pain somewhere.
Swanson: I was married when I was 17. I knew nothing. I was full of romance.
Swanson: If you're 40 years old and never had a failure, you've been deprived.
Swanson: My mother and I could always look out the same window without ever seeing the same thing.
Swanson: Nobody gets anything for nothing.
Swanson: Writing the story of your own life is a bit like drilling your own teeth.