Frank Worth was born in New York City and became interested in photography very early while he was still in high school. Worth eventually moved to Hollywood, and was hired to photograph movie stars but quickly became a freelance photographer. He made friends with Rudy Vallee and his wife, who allowed him to live with them and introduced him to other stars. Among his early subjects was Rita Hayworth, then an unknown starlet.
Worth became a friend of numerous well-known actors and actresses including James Dean, Marilyn Monroe, Frank Sinatra, James Cagney and Pat O’Brien. These friendships plus “a knack for being in the right place at the right time” allowed him to capture unique images of the stars. He was allowed onto the set of classic films such as Rebel Without A Cause and The Seven Year Itch. He filmed Elizabeth Taylor’s first wedding. He also did sports photography and was the original photographer for the Los Angeles Dodgers.
He kept many of his photographs private so that they were not seen until after his death. After they were found and distributed, they were the subject of several heavily publicized exhibitions, Including one in London which Christie’s auction house described as “…the most extraordinary collection of its kind for the past 50 years.” and a Sotheby’s exhibition in 2003. The London exhibition was curated by twins Austin and Howard Mutti-Mewse, whose longtime obsession with Hollywood helped them to sort out the long-lost collection.