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*A to Z of actresses and actors*:)


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*Taylor, Elizabeth*

One of the last of the studio "Big Stars".

Started as a child actress, most notably in National Velvet.

Went on to become one of the most beautiful, and, imho, one of the most talented, if under-rated, actresses around. The first actress to earn a million dollars for her role in Cleopatra. Won two Oscars, one for her least favorite picture, Butterfield Eight, and one for Whose Afraid of Virginia Wolfe.

Her private life has been the stuff from which soaps are made!

 

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U - Liv Ullman - Actress directed in a few films by Ingmar Bergman. Came to America

and did a few English-speaking films. (I saw her in a play by Harold Pinter. She was

good, but the play was awful, in my opinion) I guess that's Harold Pinter for you.

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Von Palandt, Nina...Danish folk singer/actress who is best remembered as the mistress of Clifford Irving, author of the Howard Hughes biography,that was later proved a hoax when Hiughes came out of seclusion to repudiate the book.

She made a few movies, including A Wedding, American Gigolo...she always seemed to be in a drug induced haze...great looking, though.

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Williams, Esther entered the Biz from a background as a swimming champion. This fact was utilized in creating scripts allowing her to demonstrate this talent (Dangerous When Wet,

America's Mermaid). Did less well in later dramas (The Unguarded Moment, Raw Wind In

Eden). Concensus: "Wet, she's a star. Dry, not so much." Profitably allowed her name to be

used by a line of ladies' swimwear, and a line of swimming pools.

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Young, Robert...Pleasant, guy-next-door type who weathered decades on the big screen, and then ventured into TV as Dr. Marcus Welby, and as Father in Father Knows Best. He was what was known as an everyman...believable in many roles from rich cads to working class heroes. Played opposite a host of beauties from the thirties throughout the fifties.

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Zadora, Pia ... Actress who was the joke of her day every time she stepped in front of a camera

decided to retread - instead of retire, rented out the Philharmonic and surprised her audience

with her magnificent singing voice, she was a smash...recorded her first hit album PIA and PHIL..

and is now a top headliner...

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*Astor, Mary*

Born May 3, 1906. In films from the 20's to the 50's. Early (1942) she gave an outstanding performance in "Maltese Falcon". Won an Oscar in 1941 for her role in ? (can't remember the movie!)

Was involved in a law suit against her maid, who was accused of stealing a diary that proved Mary to be quite a sex object, not at all like her on-screen persona.

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(she won for The Great Lie)

Ball,Lucille - comic genius who was first in the movies, then came into her own

when T.V. was in it's infancy with I Love Lucy - the only comediene who could

stop being funny and just stand there and look beautiful....she was often copied

but never duplicated..

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*Cravat,Nick* The acrobatic circus partner of Burt Lancaster, who was in 9 films with Burt. Best remembered films "The Flame and the Arrow" and "The Crimson Pirate" usually playing mutes due to his strong New York Accent. Another of Cravat's key roles was as the aircraft eating gremlin terrorising nervy passenger William Shatner on The Twilight Zone 1959, in the episode "Nightmare at 20,000 feet".

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Dunne, Irene...Lovely southern belle, opera-trained voice. Made her mark in the madcap comedies of the thirties, among them: The Awful Truth, Theodora Goes Wild. Went on to drama with equal success...Pennies From Heaven, Love Story. Her greatest achievement was as the Norweigian Mama in I REMEMBER MAMA; Should have won the Oscar, but it was a year of tremendous female performances. Left the industry on top in the early fifties. A lady with a lot of class.

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*Fine,Larry*: Had a 40 year film career as the middle Stooge for The Three Stooges. In over 200 films, Played violin as therapy for an acid burn as a child. Larry's face was so calloused on one side from all of the years of being slapped, it was all but numb!. Nickname:Porcupine

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Grable, Betty...WW2 ****, had her legs insured by Lloyds of London for $1,000,000.00. Married to Big Band leader Harry James. She had a nice singing voice and a good screen presence. Pretty much in musicals from the mid-thirties through the fifties, with a few few good dramatic performances in between. One of her best: I WAKE UP SCREAMING. Died young of Cancer.

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*Ireland,Jill *:Competent actress who starred in over 50 films. Was married to David McCallum,and then Charles Bronson. Passed away of breast cancer ay the age of 44 while still married to Bronson.

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Keaton, Buster

Born in Kansas in 1895, he was one of the greats of comedy, especially in the silents. He wasn't as well-known or as popular as Chaplin, but really one of the best. His timing in all of his work was absolutely perfect. (who could ever forget the front of a house collapsing on him!)

Later in life, his work became more recognized as such art, and he was awarded an Oscar for lifetime achievement. His stony-faced look became his trademark.

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Lewis, Jerry - superstar, once teamed with Dean Martin, and

is one of the funniest men of the screen, hosts a telethon on

Labor Day since I can remember, and is still funny, although

gave his best performance in drama with Robert DeNero

called The King of Comedy, funniest was in original

"Nutty Proffesor" comics imitate him by screeching the words

"Hey Lady"..

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*Mazurki,Mike*:Was one of the cinema's first serial thugs and specialized in playing strong-arm men, gangsters and bullies for over 50 years on screen. In films like 'Murder, My Sweet' ,"The Buccaneer" ,"Ten Tall Men" and "My Favorite Spy".

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NORMAND, MABEL...Star of the silent screen, mostly in comedies with Fatty Arbuckle and Charlie Chaplin. Contracted to Selznick Studios and success went to her head. She partied, drank and became adicted to Cocaine. Often a no-show for filming, she was quickly sent packing, She married once and fell ill soon after, leaving a long list of unsolved murders and much speculation about her involvement. She died of Tuberculosis at age 34.

In the mid-seventies a Broadway musical about her life opened, called MACK AND MABEL. Robert Preston and Bernadette Peters played the title characters to packed houses and it went on to be a moderate hit, introducing a new generation to two of moviedom's earliest celebrities.

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*Pete the Pup* was a famous dog character in Hal Roach's Our Gang comedies (later known as The Little Rascals) during the 1920s and 1930s.Was an American Pit Bull Terrier Born 1929 Died 1946 (aged 16?17)Years active 1920s ? 1930s , was famous for having a circled eye.

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Queen Latifah--Big and sexy and proud of it. Loved her in Chicago

(Ok, I realize she's not a "classic" star, but had she been white, she might have given Mae West a run for her money...)

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Rains, Claude - probably the best actor of the 20th century

who time after time gave one superb performance after another

giving his most outrageous performance as the composer

Holeaonus in Deception...he was so good it is said Brando

did an imitation of him when he made the film Desiree'

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