Been things & seen places
I love Lana- what a great great beauty
a still from "The Postman Always Rings Twice"
Last edited by Orchide; 20-12-2005 at 04:35 AM.
Been things & seen places
Julia Jean Mildred Frances Turner
5' 3" (1.60 m)
Lana Turner had an acting ability that belied the "Sweater Girl" image MGM thrust upon her, and even many of her directors admitted that they knew she was capable of greatness (check out The Postman Always Rings Twice (1946)). Unfortunately, her private life - seven marriages, affairs almost too numerous to mention, a long bout with alcoholism and the famous incident where her gangster lover, Johnny Stompanato, was killed by her daughter, Cheryl Crane - came to overshadow her professional accomplishments .
Lana Turner was born Julia Jean Mildred Francis Turner in Wallace, Idaho. There is some discrepancy as to whether her birth date is February 8, 1920 or 1921. Lana herself said in her autobiography that she was one year younger (1921) than the records showed, but then this was a time where women, especially actresses, tended to "fib" a bit about their age. Most sources agree that 1920 is the correct year of birth. In 1929, her father was murdered and it was shortly thereafter her mother moved her and the family to California where jobs were "plentiful". Once she matured into a beautiful young woman, she sought after something that would last forever. Stardom. She wasn't found at a drug store counter like some would have you believe, but the legend persists. She pounded the pavement that other would be actors and actresses have done in search of movie roles. In 1937, Lana entered the movie world, at 17, with small parts in They Won't Forget, The Great Garrick, and A Star Is Born. The films didn't bring Lana a lot of notoriety, but it was a start. In 1938, Lana had another small part in Love Finds Andy Hardy starring Mickey Rooney. It was this film that made young men's hearts all over America flutter at the sight of this alluring and provocative young woman, known as the "Sweater Girl". One look at that film could make you understand why. Lana was one of the most beautiful newcomers to grace the silver screen in years. By the 1940's Lana was firmly entrenched in the film colony. Good roles found her in such films as Johnny Eager (1941), Somewhere I'll Find You (1942), and Weekend At The Waldorf (1945). Her private life, however, was a super mess. It kept Lana in the news in a way no one would have wanted. Without a doubt it was career threatening. She was married eight times, twice to Steve Crane. She also married Ronald Dante, Robert Eaton, Fred May, Lex Barker, Henry Topping, and to Artie Shaw. She also battled alcoholism. Her daughter by Crane, Cheryl, murdered boyfriend Johnny Stampanato in 1958. It was a case that would have rivaled the O.J. Simpson murder case today. Her daughter was acquitted with the court ruling it justifiable homicide. All these interfered with her acting career, but she persevered. The 1959 release of Imitation Of Life was Lana's comeback vehicle. Her performance was flawless as Lora Meredith, an actress struggling to make it in show business with a young daughter, her housekeeper and the housekeeper's rebellious daughter. The film was a box-office success and proved beyond a doubt that Lana had not lost her edge. By the 1960's, she had fewer roles coming her way with the rise of new and younger stars. She still turned in memorable roles in such films as Portrait In Black (1960) and Bachelor In Paradise (1961). By the next decade the roles were coming in at a trickle. Her last appearance in a big screen production was in 1980's Witches' Brew. Her final film work came in the acclaimed TV series Falcon Crest where she played Jacqueline Perrault from 1982-1983. After all those years as a heartthrob, nothing had changed. Lana was still as beautiful as ever. Lana died June 25, 1995 in Culver City, California after a long bout with cancer. She was 75 years old.
Ronald Dante (9 May 1969 - 26 January 1972) (divorced)
Robert Eaton (22 June 1965 - 1 April 1969) (divorced)
Fred May (27 November 1960 - 15 October 1962) (divorced)
Lex Barker (8 September 1953 - 22 July 1957) (divorced)
Henry J. Bob' Topping' (26 April 1948 - 12 December 1952) (divorced)
Stephen Crane (14 March 1943 - 21 August 1944) (divorced) 1 child
Stephen Crane (17 July 1942 - 4 February 1943) (annulled)
Artie Shaw (13 February 1940 - 12 September 1940) (divorced)
Born at 12:30pm-PST
Her eyebrows were shaved off for the bit part of a harem girl early in her screen career. They never grew back.
In her autobiography, she stated that her true birthdate is February 8, 1921. She stated that "I am one year younger than the records show."
Fainted during her 1953 wedding to Lex Barker.
One daughter: Cheryl Crane (fathered by Steve Crane).
Billy Wilkerson of The Hollywood Reporter found her sipping a Coke in a drugstore and was so taken by her he blurted out that standard Hollywood line, "How'd you like to be in pictures?". Her first role, sure enough, had her in a tight skirt and even tighter sweater sitting at a drugstore counter.
She was set to appear in Anatomy of a Murder (1959) with James Stewart until she objected to the off-the-rack wardrobe that director Otto Preminger had selected for her. Lee Remick took over the role.
Her daughter, Cheryl Crane, wrote a book about her life with her mother, her mother's 7 husbands and numerous boyfriends and living in Hollywood. It was entitled "Detour: A Hollywood Story" and was published in 1988 (ISBN-380-70580-X)
Measurements: 34C-25-34 ("The Sweater Girl" -1940), 35 1/2C-24 1/2-36 (from "Movieland Pin-Ups"- 1954), 34C-26-38 (from her auto-biography), (Source: Celebrity Sleuth magazine)
Once when she was being interviewed by Hedda Hopper, Lex Barker, Lana's future husband, was in the same room. There was a large vase of flowers blocking her view of Lex, so Lana got up, walked across the room and removed them, remarking, "He's brand new and I want to look at him!"
Her auburn hair was bleached for Idiot's Delight (1939). She was withdrawn from the film, but the fact that she had become a blonde not only changed her screen image but gave her such an outgoing, swinging personality that Hollywood called her the Nightclub Queen.
She was called the Sweater Girl. Interestingly, Lana, translated into Spanish means "wool."
In the movie Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1941) with Spencer Tracy and Ingrid Bergman she was originally supposed to play the part of Ivy, the tart, and Bergman was supposed to play the innocent girl engaged to Tracy but Bergman wanted Turner's part and so the roles were switched.
Once she was forced to evacuate her apartment building when a fire broke out. Having only minutes to collect what she needed, Lana grabbed her lipstick, her eyebrow pencil and her hairdryer.
She was a true American hybrid, with a mixture of Scotch, Irish, Dutch and English ancestry.
Is one of the many movie stars mentioned in Madonna's song "Vogue"
Is portrayed by Brenda Bakke in L.A. Confidential (1997)
"She was amoral. If she saw a stagehand with tight pants and a muscular build, she'd invite him into her dressing room." - An M-G-M executive
"A successful man is one who makes more money than a wife can spend. A successful woman is one who can find such a man." - Lana Turner
"I find men terribly exciting, and any girl who says she doesn't is an anemic old maid, a streetwalker, or a saint."
"She's not Madame X; she's brand X; she's not an actress, she's a commodity." -- Pauline Kael, movie critic
"Even when I was a toddler, I knew there were certain rules I had to observe regarding mother's profession. I was on the set of The Postman Always Rings Twice. I knew then not to tug on her hair as babies do or mess her up. It became so ingrained that it was just a natural act for me not to do." -- Cheryl Crane, her daughter
[On Hollywood] "It was all beauty and it was all talent, and if you had it they protected you."
"I planned on having one husband and seven children, but it turned out the other way around."
"Humor has been the balm of my life, but it's been reserved for those close to me, not part of the public Lana."
"I've always loved a challenge."
"Trash is something you get rid of - or disease. I'm not something you get rid of."
"I liked the boys and the boys liked me."
"The thing about happiness is that it doesn't help you to grow; only unhappiness does that. So I'm grateful that my bed of roses was made up equally of blossoms and thorns. I've had a privileged, creative, exciting life, and I think that the parts that were less joyous were preparing me, testing me, strengthening me."
Imitation of Life (1959) 50% of the film's profits
The Postman Always Rings Twice (1946) $4,000 a week
Biography from Leonard Maltin's Movie Encyclopedia:
According to Hollywood legend Lana Turner was discovered sipping a soda at Schwab's drugstore while playing hooky. Like many legends, the story is untrue: Turner was actually spotted at the counter of Currie's Ice Cream Parlor across the street from Hollywood High School. After the death of her father in a robbery, her mother brought Julia Jean Turner to California, first to San Francisco and later to Los Angeles. After her discovery, the newly renamed Lana Turner made her film debut in a bit for A Star Is Born (1937). That same year she made an indelible impression on moviegoers as the overripe, sweater-clad schoolgirl whose murder sets into motion the plot of They Won't Forget By the following year she was under contract to MGM and gaining experience in such studio fare as Dramatic School, Rich Man, Poor Girl, Love Finds Andy Hardy (all 1938), These Glamour Girls, Dancing Co-Ed and Calling Dr. Kildare (all 1939).
Turner became a bona fide star in a quartet of major 1941 movies: Ziegfeld Girl, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (as the "good" girl), Honky Tonk (opposite Clark Gable, at the peak of his popularity), and Johnny Eager (opposite Robert Taylor). Her "sweater girl" image also made her a favorite of our boys in uniform. Turner came into her own after the war in steamy melodramas such as The Postman Always Rings Twice (1946, a tough but oddly glamorous version of a gritty James M. Cain novel) and Cass Timberlane (1947), but she was still often called upon to add star appeal without having to carry a pic ture. She played Milady de Winter in The Three Musketeers (1948) and a highly emotional movie star in MGM's ensemble epic supposedly dissecting Hollywood life, The Bad and the Beautiful (1952); but she was badly miscast as The Merry Widow (also 1952). She was highly decorative, but little else, in a 1955 sword-andsandal sizzler, The Prodigal which showed that she could still muster the oomph, but did little to maintain her star standing. After 20 years in films, Turner got her biggest break with Peyton Place (1957), receiving an Oscar nomination for her work as a worried mother in the once scandalous tale of sex and passion in a New England town. She then became mired in a succession of three-hankie pictures the likes of Imitation of Life (1959), By Love Possessed (1961), and the oftfilmed soap opera Madame X (1966). Her name still had enough drawing power to fuel a few low-budget potboilers such as The Big Cube (1969), but Bittersweet Love (1976), was hopelessly out of touch with then-current audience tastes.
Turner's TV appearances include a starring role in Harold Robbins' continuing saga, "The Survivors," a 1969-70 series; she also put in the obligatory stint on "Love Boat" and appeared briefly in the serial "Falcon Crest" (1982-83). Throughout her career, Turner enjoyed (if that's the word) a reputation based at least as much on her stormy private life as on her screen work. At one time or another she was married to bandleader Artie Shaw, millionaire Bob Topping, and screen Tarzan Lex Barker, among others. Her longtime boyfriend, mobster Johnny Stompanato, was stabbed to death by Turner's daughter Cheryl Crane in 1958, a tale that was retold in highly fictionalized form in Woody Allen's September (1987). She published her autobiography, "Lana: The Lady, The Legend, The Truth" in 1982.
OTHER FILMS INCLUDE: 1937: The Great Garrick 1938: The Adventures of Marco Polo 1940: Two Girls on Broadway, We Who Are Young 1942:Somewhere I'll Find You 1943:Slightly Dangerous 1944:Marriage Is a Private Affair 1945:Keep Your Powder Dry, Weekend at the Waldorf 1947: Green Dolphin Street 1948: Homecoming 1950: A Life of Her Own 1951:Mr. Imperium 1953:Latin Lovers 1954:Betrayed, The Flame and the Flesh 1955:The Rains of Ranchipur, The Sea Chase 1956: Diane 1958: The Lady Takes a Flyer, Another Time, Another Place 1960: Portrait in Black 1961:Bachelor in Paradise 1962:Who's Got the Action? 1965:Love Has Many Faces 1974: Persecution 1980: Witches' Brew
Last edited by Orchide; 20-12-2005 at 04:50 AM.