Dorothy Stratten


Dorothy Stratten was a Canadian actress, model, and the Playboy Playmate of the Year in 1980. She was a rising star in the entertainment industry, but her life was cut short when she was brutally murdered at the age of 20. Despite her brief career, Stratten left a lasting legacy and continues to be remembered as an icon of beauty and talent.

Early Life and Career

Dorothy Stratten

Dorothy Ruth Hoogstraten was born on February 28, 1960, in Vancouver, British Columbia. She grew up in a working-class family and began working at a local Dairy Queen at the age of 16. It was there that she was discovered by a local photographer, who helped launch her modeling career. Stratten quickly gained attention for her striking beauty and was soon signed by the prestigious Ford Modeling Agency.

In 1978, Stratten moved to Los Angeles to pursue an acting career. She landed a few small roles in television shows and movies, but her big break came when she was named Playboy’s Playmate of the Month in August 1979. The following year, she was named Playmate of the Year, which catapulted her to fame and opened up new opportunities in the entertainment industry.

Personal Life

Stratten’s personal life was marked by a tumultuous relationship with her estranged husband, Paul Snider. Snider had been instrumental in launching Stratten’s career, but he became increasingly jealous and controlling as her fame grew. Stratten eventually filed for divorce and began dating director Peter Bogdanovich, whom she had met on the set of the film “They All Laughed.”

Tragically, Stratten’s life was cut short on August 14, 1980, when Snider shot her to death in her West Los Angeles apartment before turning the gun on himself. Stratten was just 20 years old at the time of her death.


Despite her brief career and tragic death, Dorothy Stratten continues to be remembered as an icon of beauty and talent. Her story has been the subject of numerous books, documentaries, and films, including the 1983 movie “Star 80,” which was based on her life and death. Stratten’s legacy also lives on through the Dorothy Stratten Scholarship, which is awarded annually to a promising young Canadian actress.


Dorothy Stratten’s life was marked by both triumph and tragedy. She was a talented actress and model who had the potential for a long and successful career. However, her life was cut short by a senseless act of violence. Despite this, Stratten’s legacy lives on, and she continues to be remembered as a symbol of beauty, talent, and promise.

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