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Fay Wray, 1907-2004

 
 
Reply Tue 10 Aug, 2004 06:52 pm
From Internet Movie Database:
    Actress [url=http://amazon.imdb.com/name/nm0942039/]Fay Wray[/url], best known for her role in 1933 movie [url=http://amazon.imdb.com/title/tt0024216/]King Kong[/url], died on Sunday. She was 96. Born Vina Fay Wray in Alberta, Canada, on September 15, 1907, she was one of six children. Her family moved to the United States when she was three years old. Wray was barely in her teens when she began her silver-screen career as a extra. She went on to be regularly cast as a heroine in silent movies, scoring her breakthrough in 1928's The Wedding March. In the early 1930s she made a number of horror movies, including Doctor X and The Vampire Bat, and became known as Hollywood's first "scream queen". After those movies, Wray won praise for her King Kong character's combination of sex appeal, vulnerability and lung capacity as she was stalked by the beast to the top of New York's Empire State Building. But her career fell into decline following King Kong and she retired from movies in 1942 after her second marriage. In 1953, she made a comeback in character roles and made movies until 1958 and worked in television into the 1960s. Wray had a daughter, Susan, by her first marriage to John Monk Saunders, and two children, Robert and Vicky, with Robert Riskin.
I have mentioned elsewhere, King Kong is one of my favorite movies. Wray's performance may not have been an artistic triumph, but she looked damned good in that rather flimsy shift while being ape-handled by that big monkey. The pity is that, although King Kong was released onto the streets of New York, it hasn't been released on DVD.

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Letty
 
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Reply Tue 10 Aug, 2004 06:57 pm
Beat 'ya, Jo Razz
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joefromchicago
 
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Reply Tue 10 Aug, 2004 07:02 pm
Sorry, Letty, did I miss your thread in this forum? I don't see it.
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Letty
 
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Reply Tue 10 Aug, 2004 08:49 pm
I put it in general news, Joe. Hey, There's room for two.
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Lightwizard
 
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Reply Wed 11 Aug, 2004 09:50 am
Her death is historic as far as the film annals. She became as important in the film as Kong himself. It certainly does have a place in the film discussions. I'm apprehensive after the triumph of LOTR that Peter Jackson won't be able to pull of a remake. The remake of "Mighty Joe Young" was superflous and didn't do much of a box office.
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Setanta
 
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Reply Wed 11 Aug, 2004 09:54 am
I had read, and cannot verifty this, that Miss Wray was initially rather chary of taking the part, but that the head of RKO convinced her by telling her: "I will give you the tallest, darkest leading man in Hollywood." Maybe apocryphal, but a great story, nonetheless . . .
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Letty
 
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Reply Wed 11 Aug, 2004 10:30 am
Laughing
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Lightwizard
 
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Reply Wed 11 Aug, 2004 11:01 am
That's a true anecdote, Setanta.
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Setanta
 
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Reply Wed 11 Aug, 2004 11:05 am
That's a good story, LW, and it is redolent of Hollywood in the "golden age."
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Acquiunk
 
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Reply Wed 11 Aug, 2004 11:09 am
As I mentioned on Letty's thread, I met her as an undergraduate at a film festival. She was a fabulous lady.
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