Yeyep is Your Go-to Source for All the Latest Entertainment News, from Movies and TV Shows to Music and Fashion.
⎯ 《 Yeyep • Com 》

How did Mollie Burkhart die? Lily Gladstone breathes life into a tragic figure in 'Killers of the Flower Moon'

2023-05-21 18:25
Mollie Burkhart led a tragic life with numerous losses of family members
How did Mollie Burkhart die? Lily Gladstone breathes life into a tragic figure in 'Killers of the Flower Moon'

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA: As Martin Scorsese’s ‘Killers of the Flower Moon’ created history at the Cannes during its Out of Competition premiere, the film also brought into light the gruesome ‘Reign of Terror’ and the dark phase of Osage history. During the Reign of Terror that was between 1921 to 1926, more than 60 full-blooded Osage males and females were killed. However, among them, one figure finds herself in the middle of the Osage murders and emerges as the most tragic character - Mollie Burkhart.

The character of Mollie Burkhart, who is played by an indigenous American actress, Lily Gladstone, witnessed the clinical elimination of most of her family members and experienced a miraculous save from a slow poisoning. She not only survived the ‘Reign of Terror’ but also continued to live for another decade until she died of any undefined cause in 1937. A survivor at heart, hers is a story to remember.


'Killers of the Flower Moon' to be Martin Scorsese's second-longest movie ever

Martin Scorsese’s ‘Killers of the Flower Moon’ starring Leonardo Di Caprio is set for October theatrical release

The Beginning

The first decade of the 20th century witnessed a large number of white Americans settling in the Osage Indian Reservation of Osage County in Oklahoma, details author David Grann’s book ‘Killers of the Flower Moon’, as per Shortform. While the lands were known for their oil reserves, the white men married into the Osage community for inheritance. One such marriage happened between Mollie and Ernest Burkhart (the layered character played by Leonardo DiCaprio in the movie). He is also the nephew of the self-fashioned friend of the Osages, William Hale. Whether he was a friend or a fiend is a matter of consideration, however.

Everything was fine until the divorced and childless sister of Mollie, Anna Brown’s partially decomposed body was found in a ravine in Osage County in 1921. Upon her death, her mother Elizabeth Kyle inherited her headrights. Mollie’s other sister Rita Smith was also married to a white man named Bill Smith.

Two months later, Mollie’s mother Elizabeth Kyle was also killed. Since she had been the beneficiary of her husband's and two daughters’ will, she was wealthy enough. In March 1923, Mollie’s other sister Rita Smith was murdered in her own house in Fairfax by an explosion. Her husband received massive injuries and died in the hospital four days later. In the meantime, other cousins of Mollie were also killed. All of these murders left Mollie to be the sole heiress of her family’s wealth.

By this time, an investigation started by what would later be the famed Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

Miraculous save of Mollie Burkhart

Tom White, who became the spokesperson of the FBI, started with the investigation when he found out it was not a coincidence that the murders were thus orchestrated. By that time, Mollie became a recluse fearing for her life. She was diabetic, and apparently, as her condition worsened, local doctors, brothers David and James Shoun visited her to give injections which they said to be insulin. It was later revealed that they were not insulin, but rather an elaborate plan to kill the wealthy heiress by slow poisoning.

Because of the investigation, it was revealed that the ‘King of the Osage Hills’, cattleman William Hale was the mastermind behind all these murders. His nephews, Ernest Burkhart and Bryan Burkhart (who was a party in Anna Brown’s murder) were his accomplices. While Hale was tried and sentenced, Bryan and Ernest turned into state witnesses. By that time, Ernest’s plan of killing Mollie failed and she divorced her guilty husband. She recovered from her poisoning and went on to live another decade. She died of unrelated causes on June 16, 1937.