The Mary Pickford is one of a variety of cocktails named for film luminaries. Movie stars have celebrated the merits of the cocktail as well as lamented its abuses. Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire helped to immortalize the cocktail. The first words Greta Garbo uttered on screen were “Gimme a whiskey, ginger ale on the side, and don’t be stingy, baby.” Asked about how she was mixed up in a delicate situation, Mae West replied, “Like an olive in a dry Martini.” These celebrities all have cocktails named after them. Thinking about those who played alcoholics in movies, however, there is no Ray Milland, Jack Lemmon, or Nicolas Cage, which shows that it pays to be respectful to your cocktail on screen.
Like sandwiches, drinks have been regularly baptized for stars, and the Mary Pickford, named for the early motion picture icon, is one of the earliest. It was so popular in its time that Douglas Fairbanks, who later married Pickford, asked a bartender in Cuba to name a cocktail after him. The bartender did. Wouldn’t you?