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13 items from 2011


R.I.P. Jane Russell (1921-2011)

1 March 2011 2:39 PM, PST | Flickeringmyth | See recent Flickeringmyth news »

Silver screen siren Jane Russell passed away yesterday from a respiratory-related illness at her home in Santa Maria, California, aged 89. Born in Bemidji, Minnesota in 1921, Russell began her career as modelling before studying drama and acting with Max Reinhardt's Theatrical Worksho. She was quickly signed to a seven year contract by Howard Hughes. She made her motion picture debut in The Outlaw, which was initially denied release due to concerns over the film's highly sexualised content and finally received a limited release in 1943.

Russell was next seen in 1946's The Young Widow and she went on to star alongside a host of leading Hollywood men over the next few years including Bob Hope (The Paleface, 1948), Robert Mitchum (His Kind of Woman, 1951; Macao, 1952), Vincent Price (The Las Vegas Story, 1952), Frank Sinatra (Double Dynamite, 1951) and Clark Gable (The Tall Men, 1955), in addition to her collaboration with rising star Marilyn Monroe in the 1953 classic Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. »

- flickeringmyth

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Jane Russell: A tribute to the sultry silver-screen siren

1 March 2011 9:25 AM, PST | EW.com - PopWatch | See recent EW.com - PopWatch news »

Jane Russell, the Hollywood silver-screen siren who ignited a tinder box with Howard Hughes’ bosom-heaving 1943 western The Outlaw, died on Monday at age 89. But the legacy she leaves behind will always be more than just the sum of her ample parts. The raven-haired beauty was only 19 and working as a receptionist in a doctor’s office when the notorious ladies’ man Hughes spotted her and cast her as Rio MacDonald, the smoldering girlfriend of Sheriff Pat Garrett, in The Outlaw. Overnight, she was catapulted from obscurity to infamy, thanks to the movie’s poster, which featured Russell reclining suggestively on a haystack, »

- Chris Nashawaty

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'The Outlaw' Actress Jane Russell Dies At 89

1 March 2011 9:00 AM, PST | MTV Movies Blog | See recent MTV Movies Blog news »

The gentlemen might prefer blondes, but there's one brunette we'll be missing a lot more from here on out. At age 89, classic Hollywood actress Jane Russell has passed away.

Over her 43 years in the industry, Russell acted alongside some of the greats from Marilyn Monroe to Bob Hope. The buxom brunette was turned into a Hollywood sex symbol in the 1940s and 1950s after Howard Hughes catapulted her to fame. According to Variety, Russell died of respiratory failure in her home in Santa Maria, California on Monday February 28.

Russell leaves behind a legacy of straight-laced sensuality and tough-as-nails humor in her films and musical career. Here's a look back at the movies we love the most from her filmography.

The Outlaw

Russell's first film is also the one that set her up for the rest of her career. Howard Hughes made use of Russell's trademark figure and immediately projected her »

- Terri Schwartz

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Gentlemen Prefer Blondes Star Jane Russell Dead at 89

1 March 2011 2:16 AM, PST | WorstPreviews.com | See recent Worst Previews news »

Actress Jane Russell, best known for her films during the 1940s and 1950s, passed away from respiratory problems in her Santa Maria home Monday. She was 89 years old. Russell began her career as a celebrity sex symbol, first appearing in Howard Hughes' "The Outlaw." The 1943 release was famously the subject of a legal battle over exactly how much of Russell's cleavage could be displayed and not violate production code. From there, Russell's career blossomed with her turning in her most famous performance in Howard Hawk's "Gentleman Prefer Blondes" in 1953. Other notable roles of Russell's include "Double Dynamite" (with Groucho Marx and Frank Sinatra) and "His Kind of Woman" and "Macao" (both opposite Robert Mitchumm). »

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Jane Russell brought glam to the party

28 February 2011 11:59 PM, PST | Corona's Coming Attractions | See recent Corona's Coming Attractions news »

It may have been her curvaceous looks that brought Jane Russell to the attention of audiences but it was her devilish charm that kept her in their minds. A siren of the screen in the 1940s and 50s, the dark brunette Russell captivated mens' minds and commanded their eyes as she pushed the envelope for what was considered going too far with on-screen sexuality. And while her curves and come-hither eyes certainly helped play a substantial part in presenting that temptress image, it was also in the way that Russell chose to use her good looks in her acting that made her a lasting presence on the screen.

Her first role was in 1943's The Outlaw, and the fact that it's her languid reclining pose against a mound of hay, pistol in hand, that serves as the poster artwork for the movie shows clearly that the film's producers knew exactly »

- Patrick Sauriol

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'Gentlemen Prefer Blondes' Star Jane Russell Dies at 89

28 February 2011 9:10 PM, PST | CinemaSpy | See recent CinemaSpy news »

Actress Jane Russell, best known for her films during the 1940s and 1950s, passed away in her Santa Maria home Monday at the age of 89. Russell's daughter-in-law Etta Waterfield says the actress died of a respiratory-related illness.

Russell was discovered by eccentric billionaire Howard Hughes who cast her in his sexy and controversial 1941 western The Outlaw. The 1943 release was famously the subject of a legal battle over exactly how much of the actress' cleavage could be displayed and not violate production code. Nevertheless, the film turned Russell into a star.

She went on to appear opposite such leading men as Frank Sinatra and Bob Hope, but perhaps her most famous role was opposite Marilyn Monroe in 1953's Gentlemen Prefer Blondes.

Other notable roles included Double Dynamite (with Groucho Marx and Frank Sinatra), His Kind of Woman and Macao (both opposite Robert Mitchum).

Russell was also the number one pin-up girl »

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Legendary Actress Passes Away

28 February 2011 7:26 PM, PST | Huffington Post | See recent Huffington Post news »

Los Angeles — She was the voluptuous pin-up girl who set a million male hearts to pounding during World War II, the favorite movie star of a generation of young men long before she'd made a movie more than a handful of them had ever seen.

Such was the stunning beauty of Jane Russell, and the marketing skills of the man who discovered her, the eccentric billionaire Howard Hughes.

Russell, surrounded by family members, died Monday at her home in the central coast city of Santa Maria. Her death from respiratory failure came 70 years after Hughes had put her on the path to stardom with his controversial Western "The Outlaw." She was 89.

Although she had all but abandoned Hollywood after the 1960s for a quieter life, her daughter-in-law Etta Waterfield said Russell remained active until just a few weeks ago when her health began to fail. Until then she was active with her church, »

- AP

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Jane Russell Passes Away at 89

28 February 2011 5:36 PM, PST | MovieWeb | See recent MovieWeb news »

Iconic actress Jane Russell died Monday in her Santa Maria home due to respiratory problems. She was 89 at the time of her passing.

Jane Russell came to prominence in the late 40s and early 50s, reigning as one of America's most popular sex symbols of that time. She appeared in such hit movies as Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, Double Dynamite, and Montana Belle. Here last performance onscreen was in the television show Hunter. She had continued singing and working for various causes in the weeks leading up to her death.

During her film career, Jane Russell founded Waif, the Women's Adoption International Fund to facilitate U.S. adoptions of foreign orphans.

Jane Russell is survived by three grown children, a son-in-law and a daughter-in-law. She also had six grandchildren and ten great-grandchildren at the time of her death.

A service will be held to honor Jane Russell at Pacific Christian Church in Santa Maria, »

- MovieWeb

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Jane Russell dies at 89

28 February 2011 4:44 PM, PST | EW - Inside Movies | See recent EW.com - Inside Movies news »

Jane Russell, one of Hollywood’s most memorable sex symbols from the 1940s and 1950s who starred in films such as the The Outlaw and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, died today at her home in Santa Maria, Calif., of a respiratory illness, the Associated Press has confirmed. She was 89 years old.

The Minnesota-born actress was originally discovered by eccentric movie mogul and billionaire Howard Hughes when he signed her to a seven-year contract and cast her in the Billy the Kid pic Outlaw, which rocketed her to near-overnight fame and caused controversy because of the cleavage she showed in the film. »

- Tanner Stransky

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Jane Russell: 1921 - 2011

28 February 2011 4:31 PM, PST | IMDb News

Jane Russell, the voluptuous actress known for her roles in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and The Outlaw along with her lifelong work as an advocate for adoption, passed away today in Santa Maria, CA. She was 89.

She was born Ernestine Jane Geraldine Russell on June 21, 1921 in Bemidji, Minnesota, the eldest of five children and the only daughter of Roy, an Army lieutenant and Geraldine, an actress. After her father's retirement from the Army and acceptance of a job in California, the family relocated to California's San Fernando Valley and eventually Burbank. She spent her teen years taking piano lessons (at her mother's insistence) and grew interested in theater, joining the drama club at Van Nuys High School and taking part in productions there. Her plan to become a designer after graduation was dashed after the death of her father, when she instead found a job as a secretary and receptionist in order to help support her family. At her mother's urging, she continued to hone her skills with training at stage director Max Reinhart's School of the Theatre, and made additional money working as model.

Her dramatic studies, combined with good fortune -- she was reportedly discovered while working at her receptionist job -- brought Jane to the attention of Howard Hughes, who signed her to a seven-year contract in 1940 after a protracted search for a woman to star in his next project, The Outlaw. The movie, which completed filming in February of 1941, was denied release because it violated the Hayes Office production codes for decency (they were unhappy with the display of Russell's cleavage). While Hughes and the Hayes Office negotiated cuts to the film, Russell was sent on an extensive tour to promote the unreleased picture; her tour, combined with provocative ads and photos promoting the film, put her on the national radar, and a limited release of the trimmed down film in 1943 (along with a wider release in 1946) made her a star. Also in 1943, Jane married Bob Waterfield, her high school sweetheart, who was the UCLA quarterback at the time and who would go on to become a Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback for the Cleveland Rams/Los Angeles Rams.

Jane's next film appearance was five years later, in 1946 with RKO's The Young Widow, which was the first time that she would be seen by most filmgoers, since The Outlaw was still tied up in Hayes Code violations. Her following films found her cast with some of the most popular leading men of the time -- Bob Hope in 1948's The Paleface; two incendiary pairings with Robert Mitchum (His Kind of Woman, Macao); co-starring with Victor Mature and Vincent Price in The Las Vegas Story, with Frank Sinatra and Groucho Marx in 1951's Double Dynamite, and with Clark Gable and Robert Ryan in The Tall Men (1955).

However, it would be her co-starring role with another popular leading lady of time for which she would be most commonly remembered: as Dorothy Shaw in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, with rising star Marilyn Monroe. The pair, cast as two showgirl best friends sailing to Paris to find husbands, redefined the musical with their comedic, overtly sensual stylings and became real-life friends in the process.

As Jane continued to expand her film resume through the mid 1950s, she and her husband Bob continued to build their life together. Unable to have children of their own, they chose to adopt, bringing Tracy and Thomas in 1952, and Robert in 1956, into their family. The adoption struggles the couple faced inspired Jane to found the World Adoption International Fund, which assisted in simplifying the adoption process for over 50,000 families as well as lobbying for the passage of 1953's Federal Orphan Adoption Bill and 1980's Adoption Assistance and Child Welfare Act.

Jane's already-busy offscreen life included time spent building her musical career; beside her albums 'Let's Put Out the Lights' and 'Jane Russell' and singles recorded with the likes of Frank Sinatra, she would also appear in her own solo nightclub act that toured around the world, and later formed a gospel group with Connie Haines and Beryl Davis that released a single that reached number 27 on the Billboard chart.

As her film roles became less notable - her last being in 1970's Darker Than Amber - Jane returned to the stage, where she appeared in both Broadway and regional productions, and also appeared in TV series The Yellow Rose and Hunter. Her marriage to Bob Waterfield ended in divorce in 1968; she was married twice more, to Roger Barrett (August-November 1968) and to John Calvin Peoples (from 1974 until his death in 1999).

She is survived by her children Tracy, Thomas and Robert. »

- Heather Campbell

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Jane Russell, Star of 'Gentlemen Prefer Blondes,' Dead at 89

28 February 2011 12:19 PM, PST | Moviefone | See recent Moviefone news »

Filed under: Movie News, Cinematical

Jane Russell, one of Hollywood's most famous sex symbols of the 1940s and '50s, died Monday of respiratory failure at her home in Santa Maria, the AP has confirmed. She was 89.

Russell, who quickly rose to fame in the '40s thanks to her role in the Howard Hughes movie 'The Outlaw,' was perhaps best known for playing showgirl Dorothy Shaw, best friend to Marilyn Monroe, in the 1953 movie-musical 'Gentlemen Prefer Blondes.'

Though her career died down after the '50s, the brunette beauty acted opposite some of Hollywood's most famous men in her heydey -- among them Frank Sinatra, in 'Double Dynamite,' Clark Gable, in 'The Tall Men,' and Bob Hope, in 'The Paleface' and 'Son of Paleface.'

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- Moviefone Staff

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Jane Russell, Star of 'Gentlemen Prefer Blondes,' Dead at 89

28 February 2011 12:19 PM, PST | Cinematical | See recent Cinematical news »

Filed under: Movie News, Cinematical

Jane Russell, one of Hollywood's most famous sex symbols of the 1940s and '50s, died Monday of respiratory failure at her home in Santa Maria, the AP has confirmed. She was 89.

Russell, who quickly rose to fame in the '40s thanks to her role in the Howard Hughes movie 'The Outlaw,' was perhaps best known for playing showgirl Dorothy Shaw, best friend to Marilyn Monroe, in the 1953 movie-musical 'Gentlemen Prefer Blondes.'

Though her career died down after the '50s, the brunette beauty acted opposite some of Hollywood's most famous men in her heydey -- among them Frank Sinatra, in 'Double Dynamite,' Clark Gable, in 'The Tall Men,' and Bob Hope, in 'The Paleface' and 'Son of Paleface.'

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- Moviefone Staff

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Rip Jane Russell

28 February 2011 | Comingsoon.net | See recent Comingsoon.net news »

Jane Russell has passed away at age 89, Ksby is, sadly, reporting today. Russell, a major Hollywood star of the 1940's and 50's, began her career as a celebrity sex symbol, first appearing in Howard Hughes' The Outlaw . The 1943 release was famously the subject of a legal battle over exactly how much of Russell's cleavage could be displayed and not violate production code. From there, Russell's career blossomed with her turning in her most famous performance in Howard Hawk's Gentleman Prefer Blondes in 1953. Other notable roles of Russell's include Double Dynamite (with Groucho Marx and Frank Sinatra) and His Kind of Woman and Macao (both opposite Robert Mitchumm). Russell is survived by three children, six grandchildren and ten great-grandchildren. »

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13 items from 2011


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