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Joan Collins, OBE (born May 23, 1933), is an critically acclaimed veteran British actress, author, and columnist.
Joan Collins Early life
Joan was born Joan Henrietta Collins in Paddington, London, England, 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. She has one sister, the author Jackie Collins, and a brother, Bill Collins. Collins was educated at the Francis Holland School and then trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA).
Collins' childhood was spent in and around Maida Vale and was, according to Collins, an idyllic one with plenty of love, comfort and security. Her father, however, was also a strict disciplinarian and exerted a strong hold over her gentle mother, an attitude which came to irritate her daughters who sought to rebel against it. Collins has said of her father that "He was detached, cold, hard, critical, difficult, acerbic and everyone had to please him." He said himself in his 1986 autobiography, A Touch of Collins: "I love my daughters but I am not the kind of parent who deludes himself that his children are superior to everyone else's. I did not think of them as particularly outstanding in any way."
Joan Collins Early Career
In 1951, eighteen-year old Joan 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. According to a September 11, 1954 article in Picture Post, Collins was frustrated by her time at Rank. Collins told the popular Hulton Press Weekly, "They’re always carrying on about there being no women of star material in England. They don’t bother to build us up. They concentrate on building the men." She appeared in Island in the Sun (1957).
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."
In the 1970s, Collins made several movies and then starred in the film versions of her sister Jackie Collins' racy novels The Stud and The Bitch. The films were smash hits in England, becoming the most profitable films since the James Bond series. Collins has worked with some of the biggest names and movie legends in Hollywood, including Richard Burton, Bing Crosby, Bette Davis, Kirk Douglas, Gene Kelly, Laurence Harvey, Bob Hope, James Mason, Robert Mitchum, Paul Newman, Gregory Peck, Sir Laurence Olivier, Edward G. Robinson, Sir Ralph Richardson, Rod Steiger, James Stewart, Joanne Woodward, Jayne Mansfield, Sir John Gielgud and Sir Nigel Hawthorne.
Dynasty TV series (1981-1989)
In 1981, Joan was offered a role in the then-fledling new prime time ABC-TV soap opera series Dynasty 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 1983, Collins starred in Making of a Male Model with young model-actor Jon-Erik Hexum, and in 1984 played a soap star in The Cartier Affair with David Hasselhoff. With Dynasty at the height of its success, Collins began producing and starred in two 1986 CBS miniseries, Sins and Monte Carlo.She also appeared on the cover of and in a twelve-page layout shot by George Hurrell for Playboy magazine at the age of 49, and was often referred to as "the world's No.1 sex symbol" and "the most beautiful woman on Television."
E! True Hollywood Story (2001)
In the 2001 E! True Hollywood Story episode featuring Dynasty, former ABC executive Ted Harbert stated, "The truth is we didn't really believe that we had this thing done as a hit until Joan Collins walked down that courtroom aisle." Co-star Al Corley noted that Collins "just flew" in the role that was "tailor made...just spot on." In Dynasty producer Aaron Spelling's final press interview he said of Collins: "We didn't write Joan Collins. She played Joan Collins. Am I right? We wrote a character, but the character could have been played by 50 people and 49 of them would have failed. She made it work."
1990's career highlights
After ABC-TV's cancellation of Dynasty in 1989, Collins took time off to be with her family. She rejoined her costars for Dynasty: The Reunion, a 1991 miniseries that concluded the series, left with a cliffhanger ending with its abrupt cancellation. In the 1990s Collins made several guest star appearances on series such as Roseanne, The Nanny and Will & Grace while dabbling in films like Decadence and A Midwinter's Tale. She also appeared as the main characters of films such as Mama's Back and Annie: A Royal Adventure! during this period. In 1994, She launched her first and the only exercise video, titled as Joan Collins Personal Workout at the age of 60.
In 1990, Collins played Amanda in a revival of Noël Coward's Private Lives in the West end. In 1991, Collins appeared in Noël Coward's Tonight at 8:30 and played eight different women in a series of one-act plays written by Noël Coward, including an elderly Victorian spinster. In 1992, Collins made her Broadway debut in an adaptation of Coward's Private Lives. She also guest starred in six episodes of Aaron Spelling's prime time soap opera Pacific Palisades in 1997. Collins was chosen as the cover model for the relaunch of the popular celebrity magazine OK! when it changed from being a monthly to a weekly. In the spring of 2000, she completed an American tour of Love Letters with the likes of George Hamilton and Stacey Keach. Additionally, she appeared in a West End production of Over the Moon with Frank Langella in 2000.
In 1999, Collins was casted in the video version of musical theatre show Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. She played two roles in this video: a pianist and Mrs. Potiphar, the wife of Egyptian millionaire Potiphar.
2000's career highlights-present
In 2000, Collins joined the cast of hollywood film The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas, prequel of the 1994 Universal Studios film The Flintstones. She played the supporting role Pearl Slaghoople.
In 2001 Collins starred in TV movie These Old Broads with Debbie Reynolds, Shirley MacLaine and Elizabeth Taylor.
In 2002 Collins appeared in a limited run on the American daytime soap opera Guiding Light. She also appeared on South African television, depicting the role of South African journalist Jani Allan in a comedic spoof. In 2004, she appeared on a Dutch comedy film Alice in Glamourland (Dutch: Ellis in Glamourland) as a successful writer. Several Months later, she toured the United Kingdom with a revival of the play Full Circle. In 2005 she served as guest host of the popular British quiz show Have I Got News For You.
In 2005, actress Alice Krige portrayed Collins in Dynasty: The Making of a Guilty Pleasure, a fictionalized television movie based on the creation and behind the scenes production of Dynasty.
In early 2006, Collins toured the United Kingdom in A Evening With Joan Collins, a one-woman show in which she detailed the highs and lows of her roller coaster career and life, directed by her husband Percy Gibson. In late 2006 she began a tour of North America in the play Legends! with former Dynasty co-star Linda Evans, which concluded in May 2007 after a 30-week, multi-city tour. Collins wrote about her experience on the road with the show in her column in the U.K. Daily Mail; the article was entitled, "Why I'll Never Work With Linda Evans Again."
Collins joined the cast of the hit British television series Footballer's Wives for a limited run as a glamorous magazine mogul, named Eva de Wolffe. She also guest-starred in the BBC series Hotel Babylon in 2006 as a lonely aristocrat desperate for romance.
Collins will appear in an hour-long episode ("They Do It with Mirrors") of the murder-mystery drama Marple in 2009. She'll play Ruth Van Rydock, an old friend of detective Miss Marple.
Joan Collins Personal life
Collins married Irish actor Maxwell Reed on 24 May 24, 1952, and the couple divorced in 1956. She next dated Sydney Chaplin, son of Charlie Chaplin, and later Arthur Loew, Jr. At 26, she embarked on a serious affair with an as-then-unknown Warren Beatty, four years her junior, which would last for two years. They became engaged, Collins being the only woman to whom Beatty would ever propose until Annette Bening in the early 1990s.
Collins married award-winning singer, actor and film composer Anthony Newley on 27 May 1963. She and Newley had two children, a daughter Tara Cynara Newley and a son, Alexander Anthony "Sacha" Newley. Collins and Newley divorced in 1970.
In March 1972 Collins married her third husband Ron Kass who had been the president of Apple Records during the reign of The Beatles. During their marriage Collins had her third and final child, a daughter, Katyana Kennedy "Katie" Kass. In 1980 Katy was struck by a car in a country lane and even though it was being driven carefully at only 27mph she went into a coma. Collins and her husband bought a trailer and parked it in the hospital parking lot in order to sit beside their daughter day and night. Katyana emerged from her coma a few months later, although it would take years for her to fully recover.
Collins' marriage to Kass ended in divorce in 1983, although they remained very close until his death from cancer in 1986. At the height of Dynasty's popularity on 3 November 1985, Collins married Swedish singer Peter Holm in a ceremony in Las Vegas. They were divorced on 25 August 1987, with the lengthy divorce proceedings garnering significant media attention. Collins left Los Angeles and returned to London where she lived with art dealer Robin Hurlstone for over a decade.
In 2001, Collins met theatrical company manager Percy Gibson, a man 32 years her junior. They married on 17 February 2002 at Claridge's Hotel in London. They have now renewed their vows 8 years after they married.
Joan Collins on the Web
THE JOAN COLLINS ARCHIVE: PHOTO OF THE DAY : WAYWARD ... SUBSCRIBE VIA EMAIL FOR THE LATEST ON JOAN! Subscribe to JOAN COLLINS ARCHIVE by Email ENTER EMAIL ADDRESS FOR THE LATEST AND MORE ON JOAN. ...
Autograph Collctor Of Oz: Joan Collins Joan Collins. IN PERSON. Sunday 6th November 2011 A Night With Joan then Meet n Greet. I love Joan Collins, she is an icon and have admired for as long as I can remember. I entered a competition to win VIP tix & a meet n ...