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Friday, August 18, 2017

97 Groovy Things about Shelley Winters

Today would have been the 97th birthday of actress Shelley Winters, who left us in 2006 at age 85. So to celebrate the life and career of this talented lady, here are a "few" groovy things about her:

1. Shelley Winters was born Shirley Schrift on August 18, 1920, in St. Louis, Missouri. Her stage name came from the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley and from her mother, Rose Winter.

2. She made her film debut with one line as an uncredited secretary in the 1943 romantic comedy, What a Woman!, starring Rosalind Russell.

3. She received her first big break when director George Cukor cast her as a sexy waitress in the 1947 film, A Double Life.

4. From September 1947 to January 1948, she played Ado Annie in the Broadway production of Oklahoma!

5. She starred in the 1948 film noir crime film, Larceny, with John Payne.

6. She played William Powell's old flame in the 1949 film, Take One False Step.

7. In the late 1940s, she shared a Hollywood apartment with actress Marilyn Monroe.

8. In 1950, she starred in three films - Winchester '73 (with James Stewart), South Sea Sinner (with Macdonald Carey and Liberace) and Frenchie (as casino owner Frenchie Fontaine).

9. She received her first Academy Award nomination for Best Actress for the 1951 drama, A Place in the Sun.

10. She played Farley Granger's wife in the 1951 film, Behave Yourself!

11. She starred opposite Frank Sinatra in the 1952 film, Meet Danny Wilson.

12. She starred in the 1952 drama, Phone Call from a Stranger, with Bette Davis.

13. After the birth of her daughter Vittoria in 1953 and the end of her 1952-54 marriage to second husband, actor Vittorio Gassman, she returned to Hollywood to star in the 1954 drama, Tennessee Champ.

14. She starred in the 1954 drama, Executive Suite, with William Holden and Barbara Stanwyck.

15. She played a nightclub singer in the 1954 film noir drama, Playgirl.

16. She was the Mystery Guest on What's My Line? on January 30, 1955, and promoted her role as Crystal Allen in The Women on the NBC anthology series, Producers' Showcase, which aired on February 7.

17. She appeared in the 1955 British film, I Am a Camera, starring Julie Harris and Laurence Harvey.

18. She starred in the hit 1955 Broadway play, A Hatful of Rain, with Ben Gazzara and Anthony Franciosa (who became her third husband in 1957 until 1960).

19. She starred opposite Robert Mitchum in the 1955 film, The Night of the Hunter.

20. She was a guest on NBC's The Bob Hope Show on May 5, 1957.

21. She and her third husband, actor Tony Franciosa, were the Mystery Guests on What's My Line? on July 14, 1957, and his new film, A Hatful of Rain, and her recent Broadway flop, Girls of Summer, were both mentioned.

22. She won her first Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for the 1959 film, The Diary of Anne Frank (she later donated her Oscar to the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam, where it is now on display).

23. She received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on February 8, 1960.

24. She was the Mystery Guest on What's My Line? on March 27, 1960, and her new film, Reach for Tomorrow, was mentioned (it was released later that year as Let No Man Write My Epitaph).

25. She received a Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Actress in a Motion Picture Drama for the 1962 film, Lolita.

26. She starred in the 1962 drama, The Chapman Report, with Jane Fonda, Claire Bloom and Glynis Johns.

27. In 1962, she replaced Bette Davis in the Broadway production of Tennessee Williams' The Night of the Iguana.

28. She starred in the 1963 film adaptation of Jean Genet's play, The Balcony, with Peter Falk, Lee Grant and Leonard Nimoy.

29. She won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Single Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role for a 1964 episode of the NBC anthology series, Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre.

30. She played the madam of a bordello in the 1964 drama, A House Is Not a Home.

31. She played an unwed pregnant nurse in a 1964 episode of the ABC medical drama, Ben Casey.

32. She made a cameo appearance as a "Woman Who Is Healed" in the 1965 Biblical epic, The Greatest Story Ever Told.

33. She won her second Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for the 1965 drama, A Patch of Blue.

34. She starred in a 1965 U.S. tour of the Edward Albee play, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

35. She played Ma Parker in two 1966 episodes of ABC's Batman.

36. She appeared in the 1966 film, Harper, starring Paul Newman and Lauren Bacall.

37. She received a Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture for the 1966 British film, Alfie, starring Michael Caine.

38. She starred in Carl Reiner's 1967 directorial debut, Enter Laughing, with José Ferrer, Elaine May and Don Rickles.

39. She appeared in the 1968 film, Wild in the Streets, with Christopher Jones, Hal Holbrook and Richard Pryor.

40. She played Phil Silvers' wife in the 1968 comedy, Buona Sera, Mrs. Campbell, starring Gina Lollobrigida.

41. She played temperamental movie star Shelley Summers in a 1968 episode of CBS's Here's Lucy.

42. She starred in the 1969 film, The Mad Room, with Stella Stevens.

43. She played Ma Barker in Roger Corman's 1970 film, Bloody Mama.

44. She appeared in the 1970 film, How Do I Love Thee?, starring Jackie Gleason and Maureen O'Hara.

45. She played Minnie Marx, the mother of the Marx Brothers, in the 1970 Broadway musical, Minnie's Boys.

46. She wrote an Off-Broadway show of three one-act plays called One Night Stands of a Noisy Passenger, which was produced in December 1970 starring Sally Kirkland, Diane Ladd (she was the godmother of Ladd's daughter, actress Laura Dern) and Robert De Niro (her Bloody Mama co-star).

47. She starred opposite Debbie Reynolds in the 1971 film, What's the Matter With Helen?

48. She played a deranged mother in the ABC movie, Revenge!, which aired on November 6, 1971.

49. She starred in the 1971 British thriller, Whoever Slew Auntie Roo?

50. She won her first and only Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture for the 1972 disaster film, The Poseidon Adventure (she also received her fourth and final Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress).

51. She and Jonathan Frid starred in the ABC movie, The Devil's Daughter, which aired on January 9, 1973.

52. She appeared in the 1973 film, Blume in Love, with George Segal, Susan Anspach, Kris Kristofferson and Marsha Mason.

53. She played an evil drug lord named Mommy in the 1973 blaxploitation film, Cleopatra Jones.

54. She played private detective Rose Winters in the 1974 CBS pilot, Big Rose: Double Trouble.

55. She played a gossip columnist in the 1974 ABC movie, The Sex Symbol, starring Connie Stevens.

56. She received an Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Single Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Comedy or Drama Series for a 1974 episode of NBC's McCloud.

57. She played a widowed baker in a 1975 episode of the NBC sitcom, Chico and the Man, starring her Poseidon Adventure co-star, Jack Albertson.

58. She appeared in the 1975 Canadian thriller, Journey into Fear, with Sam Waterston, Zero Mostel, Yvette Mimieux and Vincent Price.

59. She and Oliver Reed were guests on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson on September 26, 1975 (she and Reed both later appeared in the 1983 British erotic comedy, Fanny Hill).

60. She received a Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture for the 1976 drama, Next Stop, Greenwich Village.

61. She starred in Roman Polanski's 1976 horror film, The Tenant.

62. In 1976, she and Farley Granger starred in the play, Kennedy's Children, at Chicago's Studebaker Theater.

63. She starred in the 1977 horror film, Tentacles, with John Huston, Bo Hopkins and Henry Fonda.

64. She starred in the 1977 Disney film, Pete's Dragon, with Helen Reddy and Mickey Rooney.

65. On June 3, 1977, she was a guest on Dinah Shore's talk show, Dinah!, with Olivia de Havilland, Shirley Jones, Eva Marie Saint and Robert Osborne.

66. She played Carol Kane's mother in the 1978 Broadway production of the play, The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds.

67. She played Brooke Shields' grandmother in the 1978 drama, King of the Gypsies.

68. She played a sorority den mother in the 1978 ABC movie, The Initiation of Sarah, starring Kay Lenz and Morgan Fairchild.

69. She played Elvis Presley's mother Gladys in the 1979 ABC movie, Elvis, starring Kurt Russell.

70. She and Elliot Gould were guests on Cher's NBC special, Cher... and Other Fantasies, on March 7, 1979.

71. In 1981, she promoted the paperback edition of her 1980 autobiography, Shelley: Also Known As Shirley, on WNBC's Live at Five with Jack Cafferty and Sue Simmons.

72. She was the guest host of ABC's Fridays on January 16, 1981.

73. She played Julie Andrews' Hollywood agent in Blake Edwards' 1981 comedy, S.O.B.

74. In 1981-82, she starred in the Neil Simon play, The Gingerbread Lady, at Drury Lane Water Tower in Chicago, Granny's Dinner Playhouse in Dallas and Tower Theater in Houston.

75. She played Ernest Borgnine's wife and Marie Osmond's mother in a 1982 two-part episode of ABC's The Love Boat.

76. She made her first appearance on Late Night with David Letterman on April 27, 1983.

77. She played Elliott Gould's mother in the 1984 comedy, Over the Brooklyn Bridge.

78. She and Annie Potts were guests on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson on June 20, 1984.

79. She appeared in the 1985 film, Déjà Vu, starring Jaclyn Smith.

80. She played The Dodo Bird in the 1985 CBS miniseries, Alice in Wonderland.

81. She played a deranged mental patient in the 1986 film, Witchfire (which she also produced).

82. She was a guest on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson on August 28, 1987.

83. She starred in the 1988 science-fiction comedy, Purple People Eater, with Neil Patrick Harris.

84. She promoted her second autobiography, Shelley II: The Middle of My Century, on Sally Jessy Raphael and Late Night with David Letterman (on September 8, 1989).

85. She and Patricia Neal played sisters in the 1989 film, An Unremarkable Life.

86. She played a dour rehearsal pianist in the 1991 film, Stepping Out, starring Liza Minnelli.

87. She played Roseanne's grandmother Nana Mary in 10 episodes of the ABC sitcom, Roseanne, from 1991 to 1996.

88. She made her final appearance on Late Night with David Letterman on May 12, 1992.

89. She was a guest on Vicki Lawrence's talk show, Vicki!, with Zsa Zsa Gabor, Sonny Bono, Sheila MacRae and Michael York on September 10, 1992.

90. She was a guest on Ruby Wax's BBC series, The Full Wax, on May 6, 1993.

91. She played Danny Aiello's mother in the 1993 comedy, The Pickle.

92. She appeared in the 1994 horror film parody, The Silence of the Hams, with Dom DeLuise, Charlene Tilton and Phyllis Diller.

93. She appeared in the 1995 independent drama, Heavy, with Liv Tyler, Pruitt Taylor Vince and Deborah Harry.

94. She played Pauly Shore's mother in the 1995 comedy, Jury Duty.

95. She was a guest on The Late Late Show with Tom Snyder on January 29, 1996.

96. She played John Gielgud's wife in the 1996 film, The Portrait of a Lady, starring Nicole Kidman, John Malkovich and Barbara Hershey.

97. On August 5, 1998, she discussed her career and her Lifetime Achievement Award from the Hollywood Film Awards on Charlie Rose (she appeared in three more films after this interview - Gideon (1998), La bomba (1999) and a cameo as herself in A-List (2006).

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