Jane Russell
Actress, Model
Jane Russell
Ernestine Jane Geraldine Russell was an American film actress and was one of Hollywood's leading sex symbols in the 1940s and 1950s. Russell moved from the Midwest to California, where she had her first film role in 1943 with The Outlaw. In 1947, Russell delved into music before returning to films. After starring in multiple films in the 1950s, Russell again returned to music while completing several other films in the 1960s. She starred in more than 20 films throughout her career.
Biography
Jane Russell's personal information overview.
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News
News abour Jane Russell from around the web
5 Things To Retire From Your Closet When YOU Retire
Huffington Post - 6 months
No, this isn’t going to be one of those lists that tells you what you are too old to wear. Our feeling is, if you like something, wear it. If anyone calls it not age appropriate, just tell them you are actually only 24 but haven’t aged all that well. But there are some things that should retire from your closet along with you. Feel free to add any other items you can think of in the comments below. 1. Bras that you ripped off the minute you got home from work. We’re not sure why you were wearing them all day anyway, but if you begin unhooking them on the car ride home, they are definitely candidates for the thrift store.  Underwire bras were invented by a misogynist. Actually they were invented by Howard Hughes for sweater girl-actress Jane Russell to wear in the movie, “The Outlaw.” Hughes’ previous experience ― and perhaps only qualification for the creation of the push-up bra ― was that he designed airplanes. Steel and breasts are the oil-and-water of fashion. Upon ...
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Huffington Post article
8 Oscar Movies Based On True Stories That Forgot MAJOR Details
Huffington Post - almost 1 year
"Harry Potter" is probably more true-to-life than some of the riddikulus movies that are supposedly "based on a true story." And we solemnly swear that anyone who says different is up to no good. But every once in a while, even Hollywood exaggeration doesn't live up to what really happened. In honor of the 88th Academy Awards, here are eight true stories that were more intense than the Oscar-nominated films they inspired. 1. After getting attacked by the bear, the real Hugh Glass had maggots eat his dead, rotting flesh.  Leonardo DiCaprio had a tough time filming "The Revenant." (We get it, bro. It was cold.) No offense to Leo, but the real Hugh Glass had it a little tougher. In addition to getting mauled by a real bear, making a 200-mile journey after being left for dead and setting his own broken leg, Glass reportedly used maggots to eat his dead flesh to prevent gangrene from spreading. 2. The "Lone Survivor" goat herders were probably sent on purpose.  ...
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Huffington Post article
Hollywood on the Hudson
Huffington Post - about 3 years
I suppose you could say that I slept with Jane Russell, but that wouldn't be entirely accurate. I did sleep in the Jane Russell Suite at the Warwick hotel in midtown Manhattan, but that's as close as I got to the real thing. Still, it was quite an experience as I tried to conjure up what it would have been like to be in the presence of the 1940s and 1950s movie icon, the voluptuous, raven-haired actress who was often portrayed as a rival to Marilyn Monroe's blonde bombshell. The fact that there was never a real rivalry except what was cooked up in the tabloid press didn't matter. It was good copy. The Jane Russell Suite is seemingly part of a plan by the Warwick to create a kind of Hollywood-on-the-Hudson, a hotel theme park for nostalgia buffs who want a feel for what it might have been like to live like one of those old time Hollywood stars when they stopped over in New York. Even the old black dial-up telephones (nonworking) on tables in the hallways add to the mood. The hotel wa ...
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Huffington Post article
Hostess Secrets Inspired By Marilyn Monroe, Jayne Mansfield & More Bombshells
The Huffington Post - over 3 years
Some of us were graced with culinary chops, and others...less so. And now that the holiday and entertaining season is upon us, those of us without much prowess in the kitchen may be feeling a little performance anxiety. Sometimes it seems no matter how many food blogs we peruse or how precisely we follow every pie recipe, something just isn't quite right. Never fear. Take a tip from some of the most (outwardly) confident and capable women in history--Jayne Mansfield, Marilyn Monroe, Brigitte Bardot, Jane Russell. That is, it's all about assembly, not cooking (and keeping the drinks flowing, of course). As Laren Stover asserts in The Bombshell Manual of Style, "The most beloved of Bombshell party recipes involve not cooking, but assembly, which may take time. (Many bombshells have never used their own oven.) Someone always offers to run out and buy the eggs and other miscellaneous ingredients. The Bombshell keeps serving drinks until the small food is prepared. That is, unti ...
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The Huffington Post article
The 1950s Screen Sirens Whose Coiffed Curls We Still Love
Huffington Post - over 3 years
The 1950s was defined by tremendous social and political change, as women challenged nonsensical ideas about their role in society and African-Americans spoke out against inequality. Factor in the introduction of more television sets into households and the widespread of rock 'n roll, and it's no wonder we refer to this decade as the "Booming '50s." While photos and films portray both the chaos and calm of the '50s, one thing that stands out to us in all the imagery are the perfectly coiffed curls. Call it superficial, but women of this era looked mighty damn fine in spite of all the disarray. Above-the-shoulder curls were popular among Hollywood stars like Elizabeth Taylor, Marilyn Monroe and Dorothy Dandridge. And housewives sported the polished 'do while working up a sweat in their patterned aprons and fit-and-flare dresses. We've seen retro-loving celebrities of today such as Dita von Teese and Katy Perry put their own spin on perfectly coiffed curls, but we'd like to take a mo ...
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Huffington Post article
Vicky Tiel: The Sexual Revolution Started in the Late Fifties in Paris with Two Movies and Two Big Movie Stars
Huffington Post - over 3 years
The sexual revolution started in the late fifties in Paris with two movies and two big movie stars: Brigitte Bardot in And God Created a Woman in 1956 and Jean Paul Belmondo in Breathless in 1959. Brigitte had real sex (to completion) on camera with her co star and later lover, Jean Louis Trintignant, while her husband Roger Vadim directed the scene. Free love was born. The Queen of the Sexual Revolution was Brigitte and women everywhere copied her hair, her makeup and her first bikini that she barely wore at Cannes and the hot pants she wore with boots on the streets of Paris. Jean Paul Belmondo had casual sex with nice girl, an American in Paris, Jean Seberg and at last America's puritanical image ETAIT FINI ! Earlier in America, Jane Russell had showed her bra-less big breasts in The Outlaw and Marilyn Monroe had brought naive sexuality to the screen in How to Marry a Millionaire and Some like it Hot both stars breaking grounds in Hollywood but it ...
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Huffington Post article
Why being blonde might not be so fun after all (Telegraph)
Wesmirch.com - almost 4 years
Telegraph: Why being blonde might not be so fun after all  —  Gentlemen no longer prefer blondes - with most believing brunettes make better wives and girlfriends, research has revealed.  —  Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell.  Gentlemen may no longer prefer blondes - according to research.
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Wesmirch.com article
Does Creativity Have An Expiration Date?
Psych Central - over 4 years
The late Jane Russell famously starred in “The Outlaw” in 1943. In 2006, at 84, she was singing Cole Porter songs in a review she helped create called “The Swinging Forties.” Other examples of mature creators include these: At 96 Martha Graham premiered her choreographed work The Maple Leaf Rag. Sidney Sheldon wrote his last novel at about age 87. Edward Albee won a Tony award for a new play in 2002, at age 75. At 97, architect Oscar Niemeyer was developing one of his most ambitious projects. On the other end of the age range, the photo shows Zoe Yin (left) and Victoria Yin, age 11 and 14, who have shown their work at expos, galleries, and art shows internationally, and “selling paintings for tens of thousands of dollars,” according to a new Creativity Post article: At What Age Will Your Creativity Peak? The article mentions that psychologist Dean Keith Simonton “proposes in his book Origins of Genius: Darwinian Perspectives on Creativity that the age of the creative p ...
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Psych Central article
Bognor’s big day shows golf can be fun
Bognor Regis Observer - over 4 years
BOGNOR A great family fun day was held at Bognor, with 51 playing a 16-hole Texas scramble in twelve teams, with a mix of mums, dads, grandparents, uncles, juniors and academy players taking part. The winning team was Olly, Megan and Mark Tinson and Mark Littleboy with a 11-under gross for 16 holes. Runners-up were Richard and Tom Hendrick with Shaun and Charlie McGuiness. The putting competition for juniors was won by Megan Tinson. Mitchell Kane was second. Tom Hendrick was the top academy member with Charlie McGuiness runner-up. Nearest the tenth pin was Richard Hendrick, John Wadley won it at the 15th. Junior member Katie Field qualified for the Wee Wonders grand final, a tournament which encourages boys and girls aged five to 12 to take part in competitive golf. At St Andrews, Katie’s age group - the nine-to-tens - played three rounds on the nine-hole Balgove course. Her score led to a very creditable eighth place in her group. She now looks forward to the next finals la ...
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Bognor Regis Observer article
Intense pain, confusing diagnosis mark meningitis
The Brownsville Herald - over 4 years
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- A week after her annual steroid shot for back pain, Janet Russell began getting unbearable headaches. A fever followed. Doctors admitted her to the hospital, but couldn't say what was wrong....
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The Brownsville Herald article
'Gentlemen Prefer Blondes' a luxe example of '50s cinema
Chicago Times - over 4 years
The teaming of Jane Russell and Marilyn Monroe in "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes" was a combination so potent it can only be described with an inappropriately long wolf whistle, so much so that even a fussbudget such as New York Times film critic Bosley Crowther couldn't resist devoting a few lines in his 1953 review to the pair's physical attributes. He actually backdoors his way into the observation, couching it in a line of dialogue from the film ("Those girls couldn't drown!") before arriving at the conclusion that "there is not much class in this picture." It seems you can't have your cheesecake and eat it too.
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Chicago Times article
Ladies and professionals team up for great day of golf at Cowdray
Bognor Regis Observer - over 4 years
Another successful ladies’ pro am was played at Cowdray Park in glorious weather. Forty-eight ladies and their professionals played an 18-hole medal round in teams of four, with two best scores to count. The winning score of 17 under par was produced by a team led by pro Marcus Groombridge from Singing Hills. His ladies were Pat Wallace (ladies’ vice-captain at Cowdray), Iona McKean and Penny Gaunt from Cottesmore. Runners-up were Sylvia Darnell, Fiona Sapsworth and Cathy Downey from Slinfold and their pro Neil Darnell from Mannings Heath with 12 under par. Third were Cowdray Park pro Scott Brown and Ann Tyrrell (Cowdray), Valeria Taylor from Chiddingfold and Freddie Hughes from West Sussex with 11 under. The winning professional score was posted by Giles Velvick from Horam Park with gross 69. Cowdray Park ladies played in their autumn meeting on a hot day. The format was a Stableford over 18 holes. This was followed by a quiz, lunch and prizegiving. The day was organized by Sally ...
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Bognor Regis Observer article
Lonely Planet: Top Marilyn Monroe Sights Across The US
Huffington Post - over 4 years
What a story. Born Norma Jean Baker as the illegitimate daughter of a poor woman with mental illness, passing her youth in foster homes and orphanages, then marrying a future-cop neighbor at age 16 who frowned on her modelling, leaving him and becoming Playboy's first centerfold in 1953, then making 29 movies (and these sad poems), all turning her, Marilyn Monroe, into the world's greatest star. And then she was gone, at age 36. "I never knew Marilyn Monroe," her first husband James Dougherty said after her death. "I knew Norma Jean. They were two different people." Marilyn, and Norma Jean, died 50 years ago on August 5. Marilyn fan clubs are hosting plenty of events around LA in early August, including a pool party, bus tours of her sites and a 50th anniversary memorial ceremony. The biggie though is the August 4 luncheon at 20th Century Fox, where many of her films were made. The $75 luncheon gives you the rare opportunity of a lot tour too. If you're interested ...
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Huffington Post article
5 most memorable Marilyn Monroe performances
Seattle Pi - over 4 years
5 most memorable Marilyn Monroe performances LOS ANGELES (AP) — There is the well-honed Marilyn Monroe screen persona — the breathy, girlish voice, the glamorous curves and the flirty sex appeal — and then there are the films that allowed her to stretch, or at least allowed her to try. A devout Method actress, Monroe took her craft seriously, dug deep in search of motivation and worked harder than her effortless screen presence would suggest. Monroe actually gets second billing behind Jane Russell in Howard Hawks' musical comedy, based on the Broadway show about a couple of showgirls and best friends who travel to Paris, run into misadventures and revel in all the attention thrown their way. — "The Seven Year Itch" (1955): Here's Monroe again at the center of one of film's most famous images: standing over a New York City subway grate, letting the wind from a passing train send her ivory, pleated halter dress billowing all around her. Yes, her Arkansas accent ...
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Seattle Pi article
Western Costume Co. and the battle for accuracy
LATimes - over 4 years
As part of my research for this Sunday's Image section story about Western Costume Co. -- which turns 100 this year -- I took a tour of the costume house's cavernous 120,000-square-foot headquarters in North Hollywood. I had expected to see the miles of hanging racks crammed with period clothes and get an up-close look at some priceless Hollywood costumes once worn by the likes of Jane Russell, Rudolph Valentino, Vivien Leigh and Christopher Plummer. But what truly surprised me was Western's uniform department -- a collection of military and police uniforms (with a handful of bellhop and hospital outfits here and there) that occupies one of the three hangar-like rooms. It's a collection that, over the years, has provided Civil War uniforms for D.W. Griffith's "The Birth of a Nation" (1915), outfit the fighting men of both the 1960 and 2004 versions of "The Alamo," and costumed police forces from TV shows like "Southland" and "Castle" to the '70s cops of Collinsport, Maine, in Tim B ...
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LATimes article
‘24-hour celebration of life’ wants your support
Advertiser & Review - over 4 years
AFTER months of preparation, Buckingham’s Relay For Life event is taking place this weekend at Bourton Meadow School, in aid of Cancer Research UK. The 24-hour celebration of life takes place from noon tomorrow, Saturday, to noon on Sunday. Nineteen teams are taking part in this year’s relay, with members dressed to theme with their team names. During the relay, team members take it in turns to walk round a track while the rest of the team have the chance to rest or sample a range of therapies. Treatments and demonstrations on offer include physiotherapy, reiki, Indian head massage, tai chi, Pilates and reflexology. There will also be a full programme of entertainment including MK Dons mascot Donny, Zumba, the Marsh Gibbon Silver Band Irish Dancing and the Milton Keynes Rock Chorus. Warm-up is at 11.30am. All cancer survivors are invited to join in with the special first lap, which is a Survivors’ Lap. The relay continues through the night, with members taking it in turns to e ...
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Advertiser & Review article
Science's Long—and Successful—Search for Where Memory Lives
Discover Magazine - over 4 years
Marilyn 
Monroe and Jane Russell appeared 
outside Grauman’s Chinese Theatre 
to write their names and leave imprints 
of their hands and high heels in the 
wet concrete. Down on their knees, 
supported by a velvet-covered pillow for their elbows, they wrote “Gentlemen 
Prefer Blondes” in looping script, followed by their signatures and the date, 6-26-53. But how did those watching the 
events of that day manage to imprint a memory trace of it, etching the details with neurons and synapses in the soft cement of the brain? Where and how are those memories written, and what is the molecular alphabet that spells out the 
rich recollections of color, smell, and sound? After more than a century of searching, an answer was recently found, strangely enough, just eight miles from Grauman’s. Although not located on any tourist map, the scene of the discovery can be reached easily from Hollywood Boulevard by heading west on Sunset to the campus of UCLA. There, amid one of the densest clusters ...
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Discover Magazine article
The bust
Business World - over 4 years
I remember how shocked the movie audiences were in the Philippines when Jane Russell displayed her big boobs to the admiring public in a much-publicized film The Outlaw. The title so fitted the controversial film. However, it made a superstar of Jane even before her film was shown. She became the symbol of the opulent woman.
Article Link:
Business World article
Golf: Cowdray get the better of Chichester - but only just
Midhurst And Petworth Observer - almost 5 years
The Cowdray Park course was in excellent condition for the visit of Chichester seniors. It was a close-run affair, with the home side running out 4½-3½ winners. The lead match, involving match manager Tony Castley and Peter Laws, ended closer than seemed probable at one stage. Having gone four up after four holes, the Cowdray duo eventually won 3&2. Match two went the way of the home side by 4&3 thanks mainly to superb putting from Peter Burton. The third match, featuring the best player on each side, Dave Hirons and Harry Harper, went to the wire, with a superb chip on the 18th from the home side’s Alan Godfree securing the win by one up. The visitors made inroads into the lead but the home side had enough in hand to hold on. Results (Cowdray names first): Tony Castley & Peter Laws beat Brendan Sharpe & David Blythe 3&2; Mike Hancock & Peter Burton beat Ken Jackson & Peter Green 4& 3; Dave Hirons & Alan Godfree beat Harry Harper & Robert ...
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Midhurst And Petworth Observer article
Cannes and the magic of Marilyn Monroe
Guardian (UK) - almost 5 years
The Cannes film festival kicks off next week, and this shot of Marilyn Monroe will feature on all its official posters. Does it matter that she never went? She is a perennially fascinating screen actress, the incidental subject of new TV drama Smash – and from next week she will be pouting down at us from every street corner in Cannes, the face of the official film festival poster. The photograph shows the beautiful, beguiling, funny leading lady of such pictures as Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and Some Like It Hot blowing out the candle on her 30th birthday cake, giving a seductive air-kiss to the lens. In a press release, the festival organisers explain: "The poster captures Marilyn by surprise in an intimate moment where myth meets reality – a moving tribute to the anniversary of her passing, which coincides with the festival anniversary [Cannes turns 65 this year] … Their coming together symbolises the ideal of simplicity and elegance." Ah yes, her "passing". Fifty years ago, in Aug ...
Article Link:
Guardian (UK) article
Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Jane Russell
    LATE_ADULTHOOD
  • 2011
    Age 89
    Also in the 1970s, she started appearing in television commercials as a spokeswoman for Playtex "'Cross-Your-Heart Bras' for us full-figured gals", featuring the "18-Hour Bra", still one of International Playtex's best-known products even as of early March 2011.
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    Her funeral was held on March 12, 2011, at Pacific Christian Church, Santa Maria.
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  • 2003
    Age 81
    She was a recovering alcoholic who had gone into rehab at the age of 79 and described herself in a 2003 interview as "These days I am a teetotal, mean-spirited, right-wing, narrow-minded, conservative Christian bigot, but not a racist."
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  • 2001
    Age 79
    Russell was portrayed by Renee Henderson in the 2001 CBS miniseries Blonde, based on the novel by Joyce Carol Oates and portrayed leaving her imprints at Grauman's along with Marilyn Monroe in the HBO film Norma Jean & Marilyn, starring Ashley Judd and Mira Sorvino.
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  • 1989
    Age 67
    In 1989, she received the Women's International Center Living Legacy Award.
    More Details Hide Details Russell's hand- and footprints are immortalized at Grauman's Chinese Theatre and she has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6850 Hollywood Boulevard. Russell was voted one of the 40 Most Iconic Movie Goddesses of all time in 2009 by Glamour (UK edition). Russell was referenced in a 1956 episode of the Honeymooners. Ralph Kramden (played by Jackie Gleason) arrives home "dead" tired, vowing to go straight to bed after dinner, quipping "If Jane Russell were throwing a party upstairs, I wouldn't go!" Later, Kramden becomes aware that his best friend and neighbor, Ed Norton, is in fact throwing a party upstairs and did not invite him. After being reminded by his wife, Alice, of his reluctance to attend even a party that Jane Russell were throwing, an insulted Kramden rants, "I was talking about Jane Russell: I said nothing about any party that Norton's running!"
  • 1985
    Age 63
    She wrote an autobiography in 1985, Jane Russell: My Path and My Detours.
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  • FIFTIES
  • 1974
    Age 52
    She married real estate broker John Calvin Peoples on January 31, 1974, living with him until his death from heart failure April 9, 1999.
    More Details Hide Details Russell and Peoples lived in Sedona, Arizona, for a few years, but spent the majority of their married life residing in Montecito, California.
  • FORTIES
  • 1971
    Age 49
    In 1971, she starred in the musical drama Company, making her debut on Broadway in the role of Joanne, succeeding Elaine Stritch.
    More Details Hide Details Russell performed the role of Joanne for almost six months.
  • THIRTIES
  • 1959
    Age 37
    In 1959, she debuted with a tour of Janus in New England, performed in Skylark and also starred in Bells Are Ringing at the Westchester Town House in Yonkers, New York.
    More Details Hide Details Her next movie appearance came in Fate Is the Hunter (1964), in which she was seen as herself performing for the USO in a flashback sequence. She made only four more movies after that, playing character parts in the final two. In 1999, she remarked, "Why did I quit movies? Because I was getting too old! You couldn't go on acting in those years if you were an actress over 30."
  • 1957
    Age 35
    In October 1957, she debuted in a successful solo nightclub act at the Sands Hotel in Las Vegas.
    More Details Hide Details She also fulfilled later engagements in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, South America, and Europe. A self-titled solo LP was issued on MGM Records in 1959. It was reissued on CD in 2009 under the title Fine and Dandy, and the CD included some demo and soundtrack recordings, as well. "I finally got to make a record the way I wanted to make it," she said of the MGM album in the liner notes to the CD reissue.
  • 1955
    Age 33
    Russell married three times, adopted three children, and in 1955 founded Waif, the first international adoption program.
    More Details Hide Details She received several accolades for her achievements in films, including having her hand- and footprints immortalized in the forecourt of Grauman's Chinese Theatre, and having a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
  • 1954
    Age 32
    On the musical front, Russell formed a gospel quartet in 1954, with three other members of a faith-sharing group called the Hollywood Christian Group.
    More Details Hide Details The other original members were Connie Haines, Beryl Davis, and Della Russell. Haines was a former vocalist in the Harry James and Tommy Dorsey orchestras, while Davis was a British emigrant who had moved to the U.S. after success entertaining American troops stationed in England during World War II. Della Russell was the wife of crooner Andy Russell. Backed by an orchestra conducted by Lyn Murray, their Coral single "Do Lord" reached number 27 on the Billboard singles chart in May 1954, selling two million copies. Della Russell, no relation to Jane, soon left the group, but Jane, Haines, and Davis followed up with a trio LP for Capitol Records, The Magic of Believing. Later, another Hollywood bombshell, Rhonda Fleming, joined them for more gospel recordings. The Capitol LP was issued on CD in 2008, in a package that also included the Coral singles by the original quartet and two tracks with Fleming replacing Della Russell. A collection of some of Russell's gospel and secular recordings was issued on CD in Britain in 2005, and it includes more secular recordings, including Russell's spoken-word performances of Hollywood Riding Hood and Hollywood Cinderella backed by a jazz group that featured Terry Gibbs and Tony Scott.
    In her autobiography, Russell said that the revealing outfit was an alternative to Hughes' original suggestion of a bikini, a very racy choice for a movie costume in 1954.
    More Details Hide Details Russell said that she initially wore the bikini in front of her "horrified" movie crew while "feeling very naked." In 1955, Russell and her first husband, former Los Angeles Rams quarterback Bob Waterfield, formed Russ-Field Productions. They produced Gentlemen Marry Brunettes (1955) in which she starred alongside Jeanne Crain, The King and Four Queens (1956) starring Clark Gable and Eleanor Parker, Run for the Sun (1956) starring Richard Widmark and The Fuzzy Pink Nightgown (1957), which was a box-office failure. She also starred in The Revolt of Mamie Stover (1956).
  • 1952
    Age 30
    In December 1952, they adopted a 15-month-old boy, Thomas, whose birth mother, Hannah McDermott, had moved to London to escape poverty in Northern Ireland, and, in 1956, they adopted a nine-month-old boy, Robert John.
    More Details Hide Details In 1955, she founded Waif, an organization to place children with adoptive families and which pioneered adoptions from foreign countries by Americans. At the height of her career, Russell started the "Hollywood Christian Group", a weekly Bible study at her home which was attended by many of the leading names in the film industry. In the 2013 film Philomena, Russell's photograph appears on a wall; a character states that Russell bought a child for £1000 from the tainted Sean Ross Abbey in Ireland featured in this true-life movie, but this claim is countered in at least one recent British report, which states that in the mid-1950s, Russell and her husband "rather informally adopted a son from a woman living in London, but originating in Derry, Northern Ireland. There was a major scandal and a court case, after which Russell was allowed to formalise the adoption."
  • TWENTIES
  • 1950
    Age 28
    In 1950, she recorded a single, "Kisses and Tears," with Frank Sinatra and The Modernaires for Columbia.
    More Details Hide Details She performed in an assortment of movie roles. She played Calamity Jane opposite Bob Hope in The Paleface (1948) on loan out to Paramount, and Mike "the Torch" Delroy opposite Hope in another western comedy, Son of Paleface (1952), again at Paramount. Russell played Dorothy Shaw in the hit film Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953) opposite Marilyn Monroe for 20th Century Fox. She appeared in two movies opposite Robert Mitchum: His Kind of Woman (1951) and Macao (1952). Other co-stars include Frank Sinatra and Groucho Marx in the comedy Double Dynamite (1951); Victor Mature, Vincent Price and Hoagy Carmichael in The Las Vegas Story (1952); Jeff Chandler in Foxfire (1955); and Clark Gable and Robert Ryan in The Tall Men (1955). In Howard Hughes's RKO production The French Line (1954), the movie's penultimate moment showed Russell in a form-fitting one-piece bathing suit with strategic cutouts, performing a then-provocative musical number titled "Lookin' for Trouble".
  • 1947
    Age 25
    In 1947, Russell attempted to launch a musical career.
    More Details Hide Details She sang with the Kay Kyser Orchestra on radio and recorded two singles with his band, "As Long As I Live" and "Boin-n-n-ng!" She also cut a 78 rpm album that year for Columbia Records, Let's Put Out the Lights, which included eight torch ballads and cover art that included a diaphanous gown that for once put the focus more on her legs than on her breasts. In a 2009 interview for the liner notes to another CD, Fine and Dandy, Russell denounced the Columbia album as "horrible and boring to listen to." It was reissued on CD in 2002, in a package that also included the Kyser singles and two songs she recorded for Columbia in 1949 that had gone unreleased at the time.
  • 1946
    Age 24
    She did not appear in another movie until 1946, when she played Joan Kenwood in Young Widow for RKO.
    More Details Hide Details Speaking about her sex appeal, Russell said, "Sex appeal is good—but not in bad taste. Then it's ugly. I don't think a star has any business posing in a vulgar way. I've seen plenty of pin-up pictures that have sex appeal, interest, and allure, but they're not vulgar. They have a little art to them. Marilyn's calendar was artistic."
  • 1943
    Age 21
    At age 18, she became pregnant while dating Waterfield, who in 1943 became her first husband.
    More Details Hide Details Russell went to a back-street abortionist. "I had a botched abortion and it was terrible. Afterwards, my own doctor said: 'What butcher did this to you?' I had to be taken to the hospital. I was so ill I nearly died." The abortion left her infertile and for the remainder of her life she believed that abortion was wrong under any circumstances, even rape or incest. She described herself as "vigorously pro-life". In February 1952, Waterfield and she adopted a baby girl, Tracy.
    Russell married three times. Her first husband was her high school sweetheart, Bob Waterfield, whom she married April 24, 1943, and divorced July 1968.
    More Details Hide Details He was a UCLA All-America, Cleveland Rams quarterback, Los Angeles Rams quarterback, Los Angeles Rams head coach, and member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame. She was then married to actor Roger Barrett from August 25, 1968, until he died of a heart attack November 18, 1968.
  • TEENAGE
  • 1940
    Age 18
    In 1940, Russell was signed to a seven-year contract by film mogul Howard Hughes, and made her motion-picture debut in The Outlaw (1943), a story about Billy the Kid that went to great lengths to showcase her voluptuous figure.
    More Details Hide Details The movie was completed in 1941, but it was not released until 1943 in a limited release. Problems occurred with the censorship of the production code over the way her ample cleavage was displayed. When the movie was finally passed, it had a general release in 1946. During that time, she was kept busy doing publicity and became known nationally. Contrary to countless incorrect reports in the media since the release of The Outlaw, Russell did not wear the specially designed underwire bra that Howard Hughes had designed and made for her to wear during filming. According to Jane's 1985 autobiography, she said that the bra was so uncomfortable that she secretly discarded it and wore her own bra with the cups padded with tissue and the straps pulled up to elevate her breasts. Russell's measurements were 38D-24-36, and she stood 5 ft 7 in (97-61-91 cm and 1.7 m), making her more statuesque than most of her contemporaries. Her favorite co-star Bob Hope once introduced her as "the two and only Jane Russell". He joked, "Culture is the ability to describe Jane Russell without moving your hands." Howard Hughes said, "There are two good reasons why men go to see her. Those are enough." A publicity still for the movie showed her lying on a pile of straw, her blouse stretched tight across her voluptuous breasts. Her right hand was behind her head of black hair and her left hand held a revolver.
  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1921
    Born
    Born on June 21, 1921, in Bemidji, Minnesota, Russell was the eldest child and only daughter of the five children of Geraldine (née Jacobi; January 2, 1891 – December 26, 1986) and Roy William Russell (January 5, 1890July 18, 1937).
    More Details Hide Details Her brothers are Thomas (born 1924), Kenneth (born 1925), Jamie (born 1927), and Wallace (born 1929). Her father had been a first lieutenant in the U.S. Army, and her mother an actress with a road troupe. Later, the family moved to Southern California and her father worked as an office manager. Russell's mother arranged for her to take piano lessons. In addition to music, she was interested in drama and participated in stage productions at Van Nuys High School. Her early ambition was to be a designer of some kind, until the death of her father in his mid-40s, when she decided to work as a receptionist after graduation. She also modeled for photographers, and, at the urging of her mother, studied drama and acting with Max Reinhardt's Theatrical Workshop and with acting coach Maria Ouspenskaya.
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