Saturday, May 23, 2009

Happy Birthday, Joan Collins (1933-)



Joan Collins was born in Paddington, London, the daughter of Elsa (née Bessant), a dance teacher and nightclub hostess, and Joseph William Collins, an agent whose clients would later include Shirley Bassey, The Beatles and Tom Jones. Collins's South African-born father was Jewish and her British mother was Anglican. Collins was educated at the Francis Holland School and then trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA).

At the age of 17 Collins was signed to the J. Arthur Rank Film Company, a highly profitable British studio.


Joan Collins at home in London, ca. 1952


The Slasher (1952)


The Slasher (1952)


with James Kenney in The Slasher (1952)


with George Cole in The Adventures of Sadie (1953)


The Adventures of Sadie (1953)


The Adventures of Sadie (1953)


The Good Die Young (1954) with Richard Basehart


Joan Collins 1954

In 1951, she made her feature debut as a beauty contest entrant in Lady Godiva Rides Again and in 1952 she starred in the film I Believe in You based on the book Court Circular by Sewell Stokes. She was next signed by 20th Century Fox in 1954 as their answer to MGM's Elizabeth Taylor.
Collins was popular as a magazine pin-up in the UK throughout the 1950s and into the 1960s, with cover appearances on titles such as Span and 66.
Her notable guest appearances on American television during the 1960s included Batman, Mission: Impossible, Police Woman, and the Star Trek episode "The City on the Edge of Forever."


Land of the Pharaohs (1955)


Land of the Pharaohs (1955)


Land of the Pharaohs (1955)


Land of the Pharaohs (1955) with Jack Hawkins


Land of the Pharaohs (1955)


The Virgin Queen (1955)


The Girl in the Red Velvet Swing (1955)


Director Richard Fleischer, Joan Collins and Ray Milland
on the set of The Girl in the Red Velvet Swing (1955)


The Girl in the Red Velvet Swing (1955)


The Girl in the Red Velvet Swing (1955) with Farley Granger


on the set of The Girl in the Red Velvet Swing (1955)


The Girl in the Red Velvet Swing (1955)


The Opposite Sex (1956)


The Opposite Sex (1956)


with Carolyn Jones on the set of The Opposite Sex (1956)


on the set of The Opposite Sex (1956)


The Wayward Bus (1957) with Jayne Mansfield


on the set of The Wayward Bus (1957)


The Wayward Bus (1957)


with Ronald Squire in Island in the Sun (1957)


Joan at home, ca. 1957


Sea Wife (1957) with Richard Burton


The Bravados (1958) with Gregory Peck


The Bravados (1958) with George Voskovec, Ken Scott and Barry Coe


Rally 'Round the Flag, Boys! (1958)


Rally 'Round the Flag, Boys! (1958)


Rally 'Round the Flag, Boys! (1958) with Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward


Rally 'Round the Flag, Boys! (1958)
with Jack Carson, Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward


Seven Thieves (1960)


Seven Thieves (1960) with Rod Steiger


Seven Thieves (1960) with Eli Wallach Alexander Scourby
(with thanks to Jason Phillip Reeser for the correction)


Seven Thieves (1960)


Esther and the King (1960)


Esther and the King (1960) with Richard Egan


Esther and the King (1960)


Esther and the King (1960)


The Road to Hong Kong (1962)


The Road to Hong Kong (1962)


The Road to Hong Kong (1962) with Bing Crosby and Bob Hope


The Road to Hong Kong (1962) with Bing Crosby and Bob Hope


The Road to Hong Kong (1962)


The Road to Hong Kong (1962)


Can Hieronymus Merkin Ever Forget Mercy Humppe and Find True Happiness? (1969)
with Anthony Newly


The Executioner (1970) with George Peppard


The Executioner (1970)

The Executioner (1970) with George Peppard


on the set of The Executioner (1970)


Tales from the Crypt (1972) with Richard Greene, Ian Hendry and Robin Phillips


Tales from the Crypt (1972)


Tales That Witness Madness (1973)


Empire of the Ants (1977)


Empire of the Ants (1977) with Robert Lansing, Albert Salmi, and Jacqueline Scott


with Richard Harris in Game for Vultures (1979)


"Sins" (1986) TV mini-series


"Dynasty" TV series, (1981-1989)

In the 1981, Collins' was offered a role in the then-struggling new prime time soap operaDynasty (1981-1989) playing Alexis, the vengeful ex-wife of tycoon Blake Carrington (John Forsythe). The role successfully relaunched Collins as a powerful sex symbol and icon of independence. Her performance is generally credited as one factor in the fledgling show's subsequent rise in the Nielsen Ratings to a hit rivaling Dallas.
In 1985, Dynasty was the #1 show in the U.S., and Collins also went on to become the highest-paid actress on television at the time, and remained with the series until its 1989 cancellation. As Alexis, Collins was nominated six times for a Golden Globe Award (every year from 1982 to 1987), winning once in 1983. Delighting the audience in attendance at the ceremony, Joan thanked Sophia Loren for turning down the part of Alexis. She arguably became the most celebrated television star of the 1980s and her character, Alexis, perhaps the most infamous clotheshorse and villainess of the decade. Dynasty was shown in more than 80 countries and is still internationally syndicated. TV Guide selected Collins' portrayal of Alexis as the fourth greatest villain in television history.


In the Bleak Midwinter (1995) with Jennifer Saunders




Collins was awarded the OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) in the 1997 Queen's New Years Honours List for her services to Drama.





The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas (2000)


These Old Broads (2001) (TV) with
Shirley MacLaine, Debbie Reynolds and Elizabeth Taylor


Joan Collins in 2001



8 comments:

  1. Oh! Many, many great pictures! Thanks!

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  2. Feliz Cumpleanos Joan! Superb collection of pictures for sure.

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  3. Holy Wow! What a tremendous collection of photographs. I have always thought Joan Collins was one of the most sexy and beautiful women ever to walk the earth. I love that photo of her by the fireplace at 20. Damn and double damn! - easily the most interesting young lady I have ever seen. If I had one wish, it would be to be twenty again, standing in that room with her back in 1952.

    Your collection here is a great tribute to her beauty and originality. -- Mykal

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  4. wooooooooooooooo that joan is a bad girl!!


    and you know what, i always saw so many pictures of her, i had no clue she was a big star so early in the 50s. she just looks so divine!

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  5. I think she is an institution of love, what a gentle character,.... I admire everything in her. New generations of actors must go back and learn basics from her legacy.
    mefkar

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  6. I love this website. Thanks for all your work. It is greatly appreciated. BTW, your photo of Joan and Eli Wallach is not correct. That is Alexander Scourby, in the role of Raymond, the Casino executive who helps them pull off the caper.
    Keep up the exceptional work!
    Jason

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  7. Sexy and smouldering - the last vamp!

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