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“Lucy.” That’s Lucille Ball. Talented and ambitious, she was someone from humble beginnings who defied the odds and became the funniest, most recognizable woman in America.

Lucille Ball spent 18 years in Hollywood making 75 feature films, going from uncredited showgirl to over-the-title star in many popular pictures. During that time, she worked at nearly every major studio and appeared in films of practically every genre, gaining fame and success by happily agreeing to take on anything asked of her. In 1951, at the age of 40, Lucy achieved a level of superstardom unmatched by any of her contemporaries, not on the big screen, but on the fledgling medium of television.

Together with her husband, Desi Arnaz, Lucy revolutionized TV.  Their flagship sitcom I Love Lucy was viewed by more people than any form of entertainment ever in the history of the country to that time. In the character of Lucy Ricardo, a zany housewife with dreams of stardom, Lucille Ball found the role that would make her immortal.

Following her 1960 divorce, Lucy triumphantly returned to series television and reluctantly took over as head of Desilu Productions, the company she and Desi had formed. As the first female studio head, Lucy greenlit some of the most profitable television series in history and cemented her place as the most powerful woman in Hollywood. She even found a way to combine her work with her home life as a wife and mother.

After her weekly series ended, Lucy, happiest when working, threw herself into other projects with various degrees of success. Sometimes she wondered if the public loved Lucille Ball or just the scatterbrained “Lucy” character in reruns. Despite these moments of doubt, the accolades and adoration continued until her death in 1989.

Today, more than thirty years since her passing, the devotion to Lucille Ball shows no signs of slowing down. Get to know the fascinating real story of the beloved woman responsible for so much laughter, in Season Three of The Plot Thickens.



A Book Desi Arnaz (Morrow, 1976)
Desilu: The Story of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz Coyne S. Sanders & Tom Gilbert (Morrow, 1993)
I Had a Ball: My Friendship with Lucille Ball Michael Stern (IUniverse, 2011)
The “I Love Lucy” Book Bart Andrews (Doubleday, 1985)
I Love Lucy: A Celebration of All Things Lucy: Inside the World of Television’s First Great Sitcom Elisabeth Edwards (Running Press, 2011)
I Love Lucy: Celebrating 50 Years of Love and Laughter: The Official 50th Anniversary Edition Elisabeth Edwards (Running Press, 2001)
I Love Lucy: The Complete Picture History of the Most Popular TV Show Ever Michael McClay (Warner Brooks, 1995)
I Loved Lucy: My Friendship with Lucille Ball Lee Tannen (St. Martin’s Press, 2001)
Laughing with Lucy: My Life with America's Leading Lady of Comedy Madelyn Pugh Davis with Bob Carroll Jr. (Emmis Brooks, 2005)
Laughs, Luck...and Lucy: How I Came to Create the Most Popular Sitcom of All Time Jess Oppenheimer with Gregg Oppenheimer (Syracuse University, 1996)
Life on the Hyphen: The Cuban-American Way Gustavo Perez Firmat (University of Texas, 1994)
Love, Lucy Lucille Ball with Betty Hannah Hoffman (Putnam, 1996)
Loving Lucy: An Illustrated Tribute to Lucille Ball Bart Andrews & Thomas J. Watson (St. Martin’s Press, 1980)
Lucille: The Life of Lucille Ball Kathleen Brady (Hyperion, 1994)
Lucille Ball FAQ: Everything Left to Know About America’s Favorite Redhead James Sheridan & Barry Monush (Applause, 2011)
The Lucille Ball Story James Gregory (Signet, 1974)
Lucy & Desi: A Real-Life Scrapbook of America’s Favorite TV Couple Elisabeth Edwards (Running Press, 2004)
Lucy & Desi: The Scrapbooks: Volume One, Made for Each Other (CD-ROM) Education Through Entertainment, 1996
Lucy at the Movies Cindy De La Hoz (Running Press, 2007)
The Lucy Book: A Complete Guide to Her Five Decades on Television Geoffrey Mark Fidelman (Renaissance Books, 1999)
Lucy Comes Home: A Photographic Journey Christopher Olsen (G Arts, 2018)
Lucy in the Afternoon: An Intimate Memoir of Lucille Ball Jim Brochu (Morrow, 1990)
Lucy Loved Me Paula Stewart (BearManor, 2017)
The Real Story of Lucille Ball Eleanor Harris (Farrar, Straus, and Young, 1954)
The RKO Story Richard B. Jewell with Vernon Harbin (Arlington House, 1982)