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Janet Leigh

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stuart.uk
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Janet Leigh

Postby stuart.uk » March 6th, 2014, 11:51 am

Having watched Janet Leigh in the The Manchurian Candidate for the first time I wondered if one could split her career into 2 parts. In the early part of her career it appeared to me, though you may disagree, she was very much the girl next door in films like Little Women and That Forsyte Woman . She was also a sweet reliable leading lady in Swasbucklers Prince Valiant with Robert Wagner and with then husband Tony Curtis The Black Shield of Falworth and The Vikings. She and Tony also starred together in Houdini. She also impressed as a short haired tomboy in the classic western The Naked Spur with hero James Stewart and villain Robert Ryan.

However, I wonder if late on in her career she attempted, sucessfully I might add, to sex up her screen persona, while still remaining a brilliant actress in films like Touch Of Evil, Physico, TMC and Bye Bye Birdie. In some ways in TMC she reminded me of the maturing Marilyn Monroe and how the tragic actress might have developed had she not died at young at 36. I hope no-one takes offence at the comparison, as it's just a personal opinion.

Spoiler

The thing I picked up on in TMC was how the 2 women Janet and Lesley Parrish backed their emotionally distrubed men Frank Sinatra and Laurence Harvey with differing results. Army Intelligence Major Sinatra, who was thought to be having a nervous breakdown, after remembering being brainwashed in Korea yrs before, but nobody in the service believed he was behaving rationally. Parrish actually knew Harvey better having had a relationship with Him yrs before when he was thought to be a highly respected war hero, but it was ended by his nasty disapproving mother Angela Lansbury. However, he and Parrish got back together,only for him to kill both her and her political father, who Lansbury wanted assassinated, as he had been brainwashed in Korea to be a an Assassin for the Russians, but he had to respond to a trigger. However, Leigh's gamble in having a relationship with Sinatra, when at first many thought he was cracking up, paid off and they lived happily ever after.

I could be wrong, but I think she was the first actress to be used by Hitchcock in a bedroom scene, while making Physico, though Julie Andrews maybe took it a bit further in the director's other 60s film Torn Curtain.


Spoiler

I think Janet was the only murderer Columbo never arrested. In The Forgotten Lady she impressed as an athletic actress, who could do stunts. She killed her husband, because he turned down a plum stage role on her behalf. It turned out the reason he turned it down was because she was suffering from Altzimers and wouldn't have been able to do the role. Then when Columbo discovered her guilt, she couldn't even remember committing the murder.

As well as being a great actress, Janet appears to have been a brilliant mother, with both her daughters being a credit to her. In fact from an acting point of view I can't seperate who was best between her and daughter Jamie Lee Curtis, a great modern day star.

RedRiver
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Re: Janet Leigh

Postby RedRiver » March 6th, 2014, 1:33 pm

I didn't know about the COLUMBO episode. That's touching.

stuart.uk
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Location: Dundee, Scotland

Re: Janet Leigh

Postby stuart.uk » March 7th, 2014, 11:19 am

That Columbo episode just aired today in the UK. John Payne also co-starred alongside Janet

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rerun
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Re: Janet Leigh

Postby rerun » March 7th, 2014, 12:14 pm

I did not realize Janet was a dancer until I read the list of Donald O'Conner's best dancers: Peggy Ryan, Vera Ellen, Janet Leigh.
Avatar: John Cantarini (Martha's husband) on future world record holder Crazy Kid. He won six in a row
on him.

stuart.uk
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Location: Dundee, Scotland

Re: Janet Leigh

Postby stuart.uk » March 7th, 2014, 12:26 pm

In the Columbo episode I mentioned there was footage shown from Walking My Baby Back Home, a musical she had made with Donald O'Conner. This was to show her character as she was 20-yrs before, a major star

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Rita Hayworth
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Re: Janet Leigh

Postby Rita Hayworth » March 8th, 2014, 8:16 pm

Unusual Photograph of Janet Leigh


Strike the chic fashion here and I just dig the colors ...
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Janet Leigh.jpg
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stuart.uk
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Joined: January 21st, 2008, 12:25 pm
Location: Dundee, Scotland

Re: Janet Leigh

Postby stuart.uk » March 9th, 2014, 10:51 am

I've just found a link of Janet, which I think shows how she sexed up her image in the 1960s.Meg from Little Women was never like this................Its from The Man From UNCLE movie The Spy With The Green Hat. She's like a Bond villianess

http://youtu.be/h2HQVd0DEpE


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