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Julie Andrews Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (4) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (2) | Trade Mark (2) | Trivia (65) | Personal Quotes (20) | Salary (7)

Overview (4)

Date of Birth 1 October 1935Walton-on-Thames, Surrey, England, UK
Birth NameJulia Elizabeth Wells
Nickname Jules
Height 5' 7" (1.7 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Julia Elizabeth Wells was born on October 1, 1935, in England. Her mother, Barbara Ward (Morris), and stepfather, both vaudeville performers, discovered her freakish but undeniably lovely four-octave singing voice and immediately got her a singing career. She performed in music halls throughout her childhood and teens, and at age 20, she launched her stage career in a London Palladium production of "Cinderella".

Andrew came to Broadway in 1954 with "The Boy Friend", and became a bona fide star two years later in 1956, in the role of Eliza Doolittle in the unprecedented hit "My Fair Lady". Her star status continued in 1957, when she starred in the TV-production of Cinderella (1957) and through 1960, when she played "Guenevere" in "Camelot".

In 1963, Walt Disney asked Andrews if she would like to star in his upcoming production, a lavish musical fantasy that combined live-action and animation. She agreed on the condition if she didn't get the role of Doolittle in the pending film production of My Fair Lady (1964). After Audrey Hepburn was cast in My Fair Lady, Andrews made an auspicious film debut in Walt Disney's Mary Poppins (1964), which earned her an Academy Award for Best Actress.

Andrews continued to work on Broadway, until the release of The Sound of Music (1965), the highest-grossing movie of its day and one of the highest-grossing of all time. She soon found that audiences identified her only with singing, sugary-sweet nannies and governesses, and were reluctant to accept her in dramatic roles in The Americanization of Emily (1964) and Alfred Hitchcock's thriller Torn Curtain (1966). In addition, the box-office showings of the musicals Julie subsequently made increasingly reflected the negative effects of the musical-film boom that she helped to create. Thoroughly Modern Millie (1967) was for a time the most successful film Universal had released, but it still couldn't compete with Mary Poppins or The Sound of Music for worldwide acclaim and recognition. Star! (1968) and Darling Lili (1970) also bombed at the box office.

Fortunately, Andrews did not let this keep her down. She worked in nightclubs and hosted a TV variety series in the 1970s. In 1979, Andrews returned to the big screen, appearing in films directed by her husband Blake Edwards, with roles that were entirely different from anything she had been seen in before. Andrews starred in 10 (1979), S.O.B. (1981) and Victor Victoria (1982), which earned her an Oscar nomination for Best Actress in a Leading Role.

She continued acting throughout the 1980s and 1990s in movies and TV, hosting several specials and starring in a short-lived sitcom. In 2001, she starred in The Princess Diaries (2001), alongside then-newcomer Anne Hathaway. The family film was one of the most successful G-Rated films of that year, and Andrews reprised her role as Queen Clarisse Renalid in The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement (2004). In recent years, Andrews appeared in Tooth Fairy (2010), as well as a number of voice roles in Shrek 2 (2004), Shrek the Third (2007), Enchanted (2007), Shrek Forever After (2010), and Despicable Me (2010).

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Tommy Peter and Volker Boehm

Spouse (2)

Blake Edwards (12 November 1969 - 15 December 2010) (his death) (2 children)
Tony Walton (10 May 1959 - 14 November 1967) (divorced) (1 child)

Trade Mark (2)

Her 4-octave soprano voice
Her very regal mannerisms/behavior

Trivia (65)

Was named a Dame by Britain's Queen Elizabeth II on the Millenium New Year's Honours List on December 31, 1999.
Her husband reported that she would probably never sing again because the throat surgery had ruined her voice. [November 1998]
Underwent throat surgery. [June 1997]
Stepmother of Jennifer Edwards and Geoffrey Edwards.
Uses the pen-name 'Julie Edwards'.
Born at 6:00am-BST.
Spent some time in a psychiatric clinic, to help her cope with the trauma resulting from her throat surgery.
Mother, with Tony Walton, of daughter Emma Walton.
7 September 2000 - Her malpractice suit against the 2 New York Mt. Sinai Hospital doctors who allegedly botched her throat surgery was settled for an undisclosed sum.
The London press reported that Miss Andrews's settlement for her botched throat surgery was nearly 21 million British pounds, or about 30 million U.S. dollars.
While she played the original Eliza Dolittle in the Broadway musical "My Fair Lady", Audrey Hepburn played the part in the movie My Fair Lady (1964). The studio executives did not want Andrews because she hadn't had any experience in film and thought Hepburn would be the better choice. However, while the film My Fair Lady took home several Oscars in 1964, it failed to win the Best Actress category. That award went to none other than Julie Andrews for her performance in Mary Poppins (1964).
When Tony Walton proposed to her, he gave her a broach instead of a ring.
She has a rose named after her.
Has perfect pitch.
She was a recipient of the Kennedy Center Honors in 2001.
In 2002, she was voted the 59th greatest Briton ever in a BBC poll.
Played the same role of "Victoria Grant" in the Broadway musical adaption of Victor Victoria (1982). She turned down a Tony nomination for Best Actress in a Musical.
Has owned a chalet in Gstaad, Switzerland, for many years. Every year she pays for Gstaad's Christmas lights. In July she presents the prize for the winner of the annual Gstaad Tennis Open. She once said if she was nervous before a performance on stage, she'd just have to look at a photo from 'lovely' Gstaad, and she was reassured.
In the 1960s she sported a bumper sticker on her car reading "Mary Poppins is a junkie".
In 1969, when MGM cancelled their proposed Irving Berlin musical biography "Say it With Music" in which she was set to star, she sued the studio and collected her $1,250,000 salary.
Mary Poppins (1964) for Disney, The Sound of Music (1965) for 20th Century Fox and Thoroughly Modern Millie (1967) for Universal were the biggest money-makers yet for their studios. However, her next two films, Star! (1968) and Darling Lili (1970), to put it mildly, failed to get their money back.
Received a standing ovation at The 75th Annual Academy Awards (2003) when she appeared to present a short film celebration sequence.
Changed her last name from Wells to Andrews when her mother married her stepfather Ted Andrews.
Her stepfather was an alcoholic.
She adopted two children from Vietnam with Blake Edwards, Amy Edwards (b. 1974) and Joanna Edwards (b. 1975).
Was passed over for the role on Eliza Dolittle in favor of Audrey Hepburn for the film My Fair Lady (1964). Unlike Andrews, however, Hepburn was not a natural singer. She took voice lessons and recorded the tracks for the movie, but the producers, without telling Audrey, dubbed her voice with that of Marni Nixon. Nixon appeared with Andrews in The Sound of Music (1965).
Her star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame is directly in front of the new addition to the Chinese Theatre. The star was dedicated on 5 Oct, 1979.
Filmed a cameo sequence as a chambermaid in Blake Edwards' 1975 Inspector Clouseau comedy The Return of the Pink Panther (1975), but the sequence ended up on the cutting-room floor.
Was selected by the Walt Disney Company to become the Offical Ambassador for "The Happiest Homecoming On Earth: Disneyland's 50th Anniversary Celebration".
Sings scales rather than songs in the shower.
She was the youngest person ever to appear in a Royal Command Performance. She performed for King George VI, Queen Elizabeth, Princess Elizabeth/Queen Elizabeth II and Princess Margaret.
Her performance as Mary Poppins in Mary Poppins (1964) is ranked #45 on Premiere Magazine's 100 Greatest Movie Characters of All Time.
Is the only actress to be nominated for (and later win) the Oscar in the Lead Actress category in a Walt Disney film (Mary Poppins (1964)).
Possessed a five-octave coloratura soprano range until a vocal nodule surgery mishap ruined her singing voice.
The song, "Your Crowning Glory" from The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement (2004), was the first time she had sung in public or on screen since she had throat surgery in 1997. She reportedly nailed the song on the first take, and brought tears to the eyes of the crew present.
The Americanization of Emily (1964) is the only black and white movie she ever made.
Best friends with Carol Burnett. Carol is godmother of Julie's daughter, Emma Walton.
Grandmother of daughter Emma Waltons children Samuel and Hope.
Was considered for the role of Susy Hendrix in the film Wait Until Dark (1967) . The role eventually went to Audrey Hepburn as it did in My Fair Lady (1964).
Received the Screen Actors Guild lifetime achievement award on January 28, 2007.
As of 2007, she is one of six women, who have received Best Actress nominations for performances directed by their spouses. The other five are Frances McDormand for Fargo (1996), Gena Rowlands for A Woman Under the Influence (1974) & Gloria (1980), Joanne Woodward for Rachel, Rachel (1968), Elisabeth Bergner for Escape Me Never (1935) and Jean Simmons for The Happy Ending (1969). Jules Dassin also directed his future wife Melina Mercouri in an Oscar-nominated performance (Never on Sunday (1960)), but they weren't married yet at the time of the nomination. Susan Sarandon was also directed to her Best Actress Award for Dead Man Walking (1995) by her long time partner Tim Robbins (who also received a Best Director nomination that year).
Mother-in-law of Steve Hamilton.
Could sing notes only dogs could hear at the age of seven.
Her daughter, Amy Edwards, married rock musician Lauren Scheff on October 24, 2004. They are now divorced.
Her brother, Christopher Stuart, was born in May, 1946.
Her two biological grandchildren are Sam (b. 1996) and Hope (b. 2003) from daughter Emma Walton. Her other grandchildren are: Max Scheff, from adopted daughter Amy Edwards; Kayti and Hannah Schneider, from stepdaughter Jennifer Edwards; Isabelle and Hank, from stepson Geoffrey Edwards.
Was one of the first women to be named a Disney Legend (and inducted into the Disney Hall of Fame). She was in the 1991 class with animator Mary Blair.
Turned down her Tony nomination for "Victor/Victoria" for Best Actress in a Musical in 1996 because the rest of the cast and crew were overlooked for consideration.
According to her autobiography, she first saw second husband Blake Edwards at a party while she and first husband Tony Walton were on their honeymoon. She and Blake did not become friends until several years later.
Was offered the role of Carol in Once Upon a Time in America (1984), but turned the role down. The part went to Tuesday Weld.
Was at one point going to star in The Public Eye (1972).
Learned to play the guitar specifically for the role of "Maria" in The Sound of Music (1965).
Recepient of a 2011 Lifetime Achievement Grammy [December 23, 2010].
Thanked only Walt Disney by name in her Oscar acceptance speech.
Release of the book, "Julie Andrews: A Life on Stage and Screen" by Robert Windeler.
Release of her book, "Thanks to You: Wisdom from Mother and Child" by Julie and her daughter, Emma Walton Hamilton.
Release of the book, "Julie Andrews: An Intimate Biography" by Richard Stirling.
Release of her book, "Home: A Memoir of My Early Years". [March 2008]
Doing the voice of "Queen Lillian" in Shrek Forever After (2010). [March 2009]
Over a period of six years, from 1964 to 1970, she performed in four different films as characters with rhyming names, Mary, Emily, Millie, Lili, and each of those names were part of the respective title: 1964 Mary Poppins - Mary; 1964 The Americanization of Emily - Emily; 1967 Thoroughly Modern Millie - Millie; 1970 Darling Lili - Lili. Additionally, during the same period, she portrayed the similar sounding, if not rhyming, Maria in The Sound of Music (1965), where her character's name was not part of the title. All except Darling Lili were big money makers.
After the success of 'Mary Poppins' and 'The Sound of Music', she declined huge offers for more nanny roles with the explanation: "I've done that."
Both Julie and her husband, Blake Edwards, underwent psychoanalysis in the 1970's as a way to deal with their respective career slumps.
During the Vietnam War, Julie and her husband, Blake Edwards both became involved with the Committee of Responsibility, which brought severely injured children from the war zone to the US for treatment. Their involvement led them to adopt two Vietnamese abandoned children.
Was the 61st actress to receive an Academy Award; she won the Best Actress Oscar for Mary Poppins (1964) at The 37th Annual Academy Awards (1965) on April 5, 1965.
Has had one of her ankle bone joints replaced with a titanium implant to avoid being confined to a wheelchair.

Personal Quotes (20)

I don't want to be thought of as wholesome.
[1982] Does Mary Poppins have an orgasm? Does she go to the bathroom? I assure you, she does.
Singing has never been particularly easy for me.
Films are much more my level. On stage I never feel quite enough.
[upon answering whether Mary Poppins and Bert ever got it together]: I hope so. She wouldn't admit it, but I do hope so.
As my mother said, I never sprang out of bed with a glad shout! My voice needed oiling and then it took off.
I had a teacher who stressed for me the importance of diction in terms of - I want to be very careful about how I say this - in terms of supporting one's voice when one is singing. In other words, if you hold on to your words, your voice will pull through for you when you're singing. So be true to your vowels. Supposing you have to sing [from "The Messiah"] "Behold thy king cometh unto thee". If you do a strong "thee", it will help you with the "-hold", which is a much higher note. And it's the note before the note that matters, then you unpeel a song backwards.
A lot of my life happened in great, wonderful bursts of good fortune, and then I would race to be worthy of it.
[on being a gay icon] I don't know. I'm sort of aware that I am. But I'm that odd mixture of, on the one hand, being a gay icon and, on the other hand, having grandmas and parents being grateful I'm around to be a babysitter for their kids. And I've never been able to figure out what makes a gay icon, because there are many different kinds. I don't think I have the image that, say, Judy Garland has, or Bette Davis.
[upon receiving the BAFTA award on October 7, 1989] I am first and always English, and I carry my country in my heart wherever I go. I've tried to honour her, and I have the funny feeling that perhaps tonight, in some way, I've managed to do just that.
[asked where she kept her Oscar] He stayed in the attic a long time. I just didn't feel worthy . . . When I got to know more about film, I felt safe trotting him out.
I've learned things about myself through singing. I used to have a certain dislike of the audience, not as individual people, but as a giant body who was judging me. Of course, it wasn't really them judging me. It was me judging me. Once I got past that fear, it freed me up, not just when I was performing but in other parts of my life.
Bette Davis was always marvelous.
As soon as you have one, all those dormant maternal instincts start popping out all over you, like German measles.
All love shifts and changes. I don't know if you can be wholeheartedly in love all the time.
Blake [husband Blake Edwards] and I have this wonderful arrangement that while one is working hard, the other tries to be at home as much as possible and vice versa.
All kinds of things have been printed, including much gossip and rumour and finally I feel ready to have my say. I want to be as honest as I can.
Sometimes I'm so sweet even I can't stand it.
[on Max von Sydow] He was the unqualified front runner -- the most generous man I've ever met. And he had such a lovely light sense of humor. I consider it a privilege to have worked with him.
With 'Star' and 'Darling Lili', it seemed that the big musicals weren't popular any more. I underwent a career dip. You know the Hollywood saying 'You're only as good as your last hit'. Sometimes an enormous hit can carry you along, but not forever.

Salary (7)

Mary Poppins (1964) $125,000
The Sound of Music (1965) $225,000
Torn Curtain (1966) $750,000
Hawaii (1966) $700,000
Thoroughly Modern Millie (1967) $1,000,000
Star! (1968) $1,000,000
Darling Lili (1970) $1,110,000

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