Happy Birthday Grace Kelly, Princess of Monaco!

Actress. Mother. Philanthropist. Style Icon. Princess of Monaco.

0824-28-grace-kelly-400

Today would have been Grace Kelly’s 85th Birthday. She was as famous an actress as she was a Princess and will always be remembered for her fashion choices, very private private life and for her leading roles opposite some very famous leading men. When she gave up acting to marry Prince Rainier of Monaco Hollywood and her fans literally mourned the loss of such an amazing and dedicated actress but we would soon see her as  the perfect Princess. She took all her duties in her stride, put her family first and became world known in her charity work.

We would then mourn her again, when aged 52, she died after a car crash. Many she had worked with throughout her life would attend her funeral including Princess Diana, Cary Grant and James Stewart who read a eulogy.

Grace, you gave us such delicate yet strong performances that showed us what a strong woman you were and what strong women we could be. You’re remembered even today for your fashion style and your beautiful hairstyle. You charmed audiences and the likes of James Stewart, Clark Gable, Cary Grant and Frank Sinatra and all the other men you acted opposite. Not many other women retired from acting and had Alfred Hitchcock trying to persuade them back into the business.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

We leave you with a humorous clip from Grace’s last ever film, released in 1956, High Society.

Advertisements

Happy Birthday Natalie Wood!

tumblr_n46rh73juW1qa70eyo1_500Today would have been Natalie Wood’s 76th birthday! I love this woman and not just because I was named after her.

She started acting at an early age and there is so much more to her than the suspicious circumstances surrounding her early death by drowning in 1981. She was her own woman with a life very much lived in the limelight. Her marriages to Robert Wagner never took away from her stardom.

Natalie was a true beauty of the golden era and all the way through her career. She remained professional in her work and Orson Welles once commented that Wood’s professionalism when she was a child was “so good, she was terrifying.”

In celebration of her birthday I’m going to tell you about some of my favourite parts she played throughout her career.

 

Miracle on 34th Street (1947)

In Natalie’s first ever starring role, aged 9, she plays Susan Walker a girl brought up not to tumblr_n842dtGJZf1snmmclo1_500believe in fairytales but when she meets Kris Kringle at Macy’s Department store finds that Santa could actually be real. I doubt I need to tell you much about the storyline. Miracle on 34th Street is a Thanksgiving and Christmas classic. You’ve probably all watched the 1994 version with Mara Wilson playing Susan but this version is just as magical. Wood’s performance is heartfelt and very real.

tumblr_lwn39qrkAv1qbsbnoo5_r1_250

 

Rebel Without A Cause (1955)

tumblr_n5kpba5vMR1rerml7o1_1280.pngThis is one of my all time favourite films and one of the very few that stars James Dean. The film is about teenagers, rebellion and a time of decay for American teenagers. When you watch it it’s eerie how true some of the situations seem to be, even today. Wood plays Judy who we see in the Police Station with Jim (Dean) at the beginning of the film. Their relationship grows slowly but the portrayal is perfect for delinquent teenagers. Rebel Without A Cause is one of the first films where we see Wood flung into varying emotional scenes and still at such a young age, she was only 17 at the time.

 

West Side Story (1961)

Okay I know she doesn’t sing herself but this is probably one of the films everyone tumblr_n02kmiI17k1s5bh5uo1_500associates with Natalie Wood. West Side Story is an adaptation of Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet, Natalie plays Maria against Richard Beymer’s Tony. Tensions erupt between Maria’s brothers gang the Sharks and the gang Tony is part of the Jets. The characters are portrayed very well and Wood’s acting is quite similar to her work in Rebel Without A Cause. Even her dancing and dubbing for her singing seems realistic. The emotion though out the film seems to make her role stronger, especially with the end tragedy.

 

There are other fantastic films Natalie Wood starred in so if you get chance have a watch of Gypsy (1962), Sex and the Single Girl (1964), Marjorie Morningstar (1958) and The Great Race (1965). You won’t be disappointed with the comedy, drama and cast involved in each.

tumblr_n8z2cdvA0m1ska7gbo1_1280 tumblr_n2y411h4cS1rce5tlo1_1280

 

Birthday Double: Olivia de Havilland & Leslie Caron

This year we bring you a special beginning to July. We celebrate two Hollywood legends birthdays and they’re both still alive! Happy Birthday to Olivia de Havilland and Leslie Caron!

tumblr_n1ko4rscC01qlr2oco1_500 tumblr_me6f6zj2PB1qkuou9o1_1280

 

Both ladies have brought their own achievements to old Hollywood and are true Hollywood actresses in every sense of the phrase.

 

Olivia de Havilland

Olivia_de_Havilland_stillBorn in Tokyo, Japan on 1st July 1916 de Havilland has lived through it all. She broke into Hollywood early on and is famous for starring opposite Errol Flynn in eight films including The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938), having a public off screen feud with her sister, Joan Fontaine, but she’s probably most famous for playing Melanie Hamilton in Southern epic Gone With the Wind (1939) with Vivien Leigh and Clark Gable. Her acting shows how versatile she was and her attitude fits in perfectly with the era of films she was in.  All her big films will be remembered forever as will her supposed romantic ties to Flynn. De Havilland won many awards during her long stage career including two Academy Awards. She also won a court case about how long you could be signed to a certain producer for, even today this is known as the de Havilland Law. She is an actress and woman who will always be remembered for her work, her long life and what she has done for the movie industry as a whole.

Happy 98th Birthday Olivia!

De_Havilland-Melanie

 

 

Leslie Caron

leslie-caron-and-gigi-galleryCaron was born in Seine, France on 1st July 1931. Her first film role was in An American In Paris starring opposite Gene Kelly. It was Kelly that managed to get her into the big films which shot her to stardom. Caron is a well known dancer and singer and is one of only a few actresses to have danced with the likes of Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly and Rudolf Nureyev. Her most famous role is probably that of her playing Gigi in the 1958 version of Gigi. Her portrayal of a young woman learning to be a courtesan is fun and care free in Minelli’s version of the film. The addition of her lovely singing and dancing makes it a brilliant performance.

Caron has had a long and wonderful career with a mixture of musicals, dramas and tv work. The awards she has won are well deserved and we can only thank Gene Kelly for seeing her talent all those years ago at Ballet des Champs Elysees.

Happy 83rd Birthday Leslie!

tumblr_lp05gvCMtZ1qcbjvgo1_500

 

It’s great to be able to write a post about one actor from the Golden era still alive to celebrate their birthday but two is magical in our book. Enjoy your birthday’s ladies while we enjoy celebrating by enjoying your films.

Happy Birthday Woman of the Year Katharine Hepburn!

Katharine_hepburn_woman_of_the_year_croppedOn this day in 1907 Katharine Houghton Hepburn was born in Connecticut. She would grow up to be one of Hollywood’s best loved actresses. She spoke out for what she believed in and was headstrong and independent throughout her entire life. She made tough decisions when it came to her relationship with Spencer Tracy yet we all loved her for it and they made a perfect couple. She still holds the record for the most nominations in the Academy Awards for Best Actress; 4 nominations.

 

tumblr_inline_n3f1ptFqJU1srbxnz

Cary Grant wears a skirt in protest at Hepburn wearing trousers.

Hepburn’s films are legendary and the genres she crosses means there’s something for everyone. She shone over every genre making her a real multi talented lady. For women she made it cool for us to wear trousers, back in the day this was a big thing. She also had spectacular cheekbones. I’ve always said I want her personality and cheekbones. During her life she kept her private life as private as she could and shunned the limelight and glamour that was associated with it.

 

The majority of her films have her starring as a strong woman, even in the time when she wasn’t such a box office success. We see the strong willed Hepburn in her first film with Spencer Tracey, Woman of the Year (1942). This is a great light hearted comedy that shows off the delightful chemistry between Hepburn and Tracy while showing Hepburn, who plays a journalist, as a woman who can’t cook, gives orders and basically lives, eats and breathes work. Domestic goddess she is not.

This is just one of Katharine’s big films. Others to take a look at are:

  • Bringing Up Baby (1938) Starring Cary Grant
  • The Philadelphia Story (1940) Starring James Stewart and Cary Grant
  • Adam’s Rib (1949) Starring Spencer Tracy
  • The African Queen (1951) Starring Humphrey Bogart

tumblr_n1c7d1XFbB1qg4blro1_500

It’s really fair to say at 107 years old Katharine Hepburn is still being remembered by the cinema and Hollywood lovers of the world. She managed to stay afloat in a cutthroat business when others went under and starred with the late greats. Her life was a Hollywood story in real life which made her films and relationships memorable.

tumblr_n4fhar5QCa1txmvhuo2_1280

Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn

Happy Birthday Well Did You Evah!

Wow we’ve made it a full year! (Okay maybe a year and a few days)

We did have big plans but because we left these plans a tad bit late we haven’t been able to fulfil them. Organisational skills are obviously not our strong point. We will however be bringing special things throughout the festive month of December as a thank you for you our lovely fans. We wouldn’t have made it this far without you!

Happy_Birthday_gif

As part of our birthday celebrations we wanted you, our fans, to write for us. I also wanted to send chocolate reindeers to people but this idea was squashed in the early stages.

We’re also doing a special poll where you choose your favourite film, actor and actress of 2013 and which ever gets the most votes by the end of December will win. I was thinking we’d basically write a post on them. This all depends on you guys participating! So please get in touch on here or Facebook and we’ll get the poll started!

So lets all go eat cake, raise a glass of something nice and give three cheers for Well Did You Evah! A blog I am dead proud of and get to write about what I love for people who love reading about it. Here’s to another brilliant and fabulous year!

Here I’ll leave you to the song (and our namesake) Well Did You Evah from High Society. What A Swell Party It Is!

Celebrate Gene Kelly’s Birthday with us!

tumblr_mrww0eX4Ro1rn55g9o5_250Today, the 23rd August, is a special day. Mr Gene Kelly would have been 101 today! We realise that there’s not much we can tell you that you don’t already know. Singer. Dancer. Director. Actor. All round good guy. Friend to the stars. So what can we do to make his birthday special? Well I scoured my DVD collection, flicked determinedly through all my relevant books and decided to tell you about my top 5 Gene Kelly Musical Dancey moments. Continue reading

Happy Birthday Marilyn Monroe!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Yes, this lovely gorgeous lady was born 1st June 1929, why don’t we celebrate this as a holiday? It could be world sexy day!

Norma Jeane Mortenson, A.K.A Marilyn Monroe was a Actress, Model and singer, also as known she was drop dead gorgeous and had a wonderful feminine figure.

She had a rough childhood, but actually should be used as inspiration for children. Marilyn’s mother was mentally unstable after a few dramatic appearances. Marilyn was put into foster care, one of her mothers friends later became her guardian. Although these were the 1930’s with this sort of up bringing Marilyn could have ended up far from what she became. It was her guardian who saw the potential in Marilyn but this arrangement didn’t last long as her guardian got remarried in the end Marilyn got put back into the system. However, due to her mother not signing adoption papers Marilyn found herself back at her guardians and then had to be moved to an aunts after an attempted sexual assault, performed by her guardians husband.

Marilyn’s teenage years saw her getting married, below age. She moved back in with her mother’s friend and husband, they decided to move and an offer of adoption was made, however, again Marilyn’s mother refused. The idea of marriage came across as she was involved with man- her first husband- James Dougherty.

 

You know what. I’m not going to go through her whole biography. In the end she was this extraordinary woman, who like most hollywood celebrities received some bad press. Of course not everyone was going to love her, she had a personality under those looks. Unfortunately, she is another one of the amazing talents the world created who ended up taking her own life

Ella.Fitzgerald.Marilyn.Monroe

 

Marilyn warhol

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Without Marilyn, homes wouldn’t be decorated in pictures of her portrait, in pop-art form or any form. We wouldn’t have any of the iconic movies she made famous and we wouldn’t have the video of , “Happy Birthday, Dear president,” To Look back on. And there is a possibility Ella Fitzgerald wouldn’t haven’t had become the shining star she is.

 

So, pay respects and wish a happy birthday to one of the worlds most sexiest talents

Happy Birthday America’s Sweetheart, Mary Pickford!

Mary Pickford may be a name you’ve never heard of. But by gods you need to know about her. She was a true beauty had the brains and courage to stand up in acting circles and gained the name “America’s … Continue reading