Leigh's career took off in the 1930s with her appearances in British films and stage productions. However, her breakthrough role came in 1939 when she was cast as Scarlett O'Hara in the American epic historical romance film Gone with the Wind. Her portrayal of the strong-willed Southern belle earned her the Academy Award for Best Actress. In 1940, Leigh married her second husband, the renowned British actor Sir Laurence Olivier.
The couple became one of the most celebrated and glamorous partnerships in the entertainment industry, working together on numerous stage and screen projects. Leigh's career continued to flourish in the 1940s and 1950s, with notable performances in films such as "Waterloo Bridge" (1940), "That Hamilton Woman" (1941), and "Caesar and Cleopatra" (1945). In 1951, she starred in the film adaptation of Tennessee Williams' play "A Streetcar Named Desire, " playing the role of Blanche DuBois.
Her powerful performance earned her a second Academy Award for Best Actress. Despite her professional success, Leigh's personal life was marked by struggles with mental health issues, including bipolar disorder, and a series of tumultuous relationships.She and Olivier divorced in 1960, and Leigh continued to work in theater and film until her death. Vivien Leigh passed away on July 8, 1967, at the age of 53, due to complications from tuberculosis. Her remarkable career and unforgettable performances have left an indelible mark on the history of cinema and theater, and she is remembered as one of the greatest actresses of her time.