Category Archives: Actors

Screen Icon: Esther Williams


Star of screen and pool, Esther Williams, died yesterday at the age of 91. Esther never planned on being a film star but had a passion for swimming, becoming a champion in the sport by the age of 16. She was working as a store assistant at I Magnin in order to pay for tuition fees for a degree in physical education, when she was talent spotted and placed in the water show ‘Aquacade’ alongside fellow swimmer (and Tarzan star) Johnny Weissmuller.

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Screen Icon: Deanna Durbin


Deanna Durbin, star of the silver screen in the 30s and 40s, passed away last week at the grand old age of 91. It seems that every time a famous actress from times past dies, people say ‘she was the last of the great stars’ or some similar line. I personally don’t think is ever true, because the world will always have stars, and as time inevitably passes by own sense of nostalgia imbues celebrities of old with a sense of mystery and glamour that we don’t afford to those we see in the press every day.

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Fred Astaire Dancing ‘Bojangles of Harlem’

fred astaire bojangles in harlem

The good old BBC has been showing a number of Ginger Rogers films this week, one of which is the 1936 movie ‘Swing Time’, also starring Fred Astaire. I hadn’t seen this particular Astaire and Rogers before, and was delighted to find it way up there with their best. In particular, I was blown away by Fred’s inventive tap dancing in the ‘Bojangles of Harlem’ routine.

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Bette Davis Dolls


Goodness knows how I found these – one minute I was trying to catch up with the various fashion weeks (I am so behind I even made a spreadsheet), the next minute I found myself ogling Bette Davis dolls. They are available from a US company called Tonner Doll, and I just love the 1930s outfits. If only I was six inches tall! I’m disappointed there is no Margot Channing doll with martini in hand, but the others are still pretty great. They also have Joan Crawford, Ava Gardner, and my favourite diva, Miss Piggy. Wouldn’t it be brilliant to get the Bette and Joan dolls and make them fight! Ava would offer catty comments from the side. And then Piggy would stride in and karate-kick all their arses.

Screen Icon: Miss Piggy

Miss Piggy karate

Style is more than some designer-clad pop-tart staring vacantly into a bank of camera flashes. Style is not just how you wear your clothes, or hair, or make-up… real style is about individuality and courage and achievement and humour and intelligence and creativity and a certain je ne sais quoi. Miss Piggy has it in bucketloads.

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