DCS: venus ramey

Venus Ramey, a pretty 20-year-old from the northern Kentucky town of Asheville, was crowned Miss America on September 9, 1944. She was the first Miss America to be photographed in color, no doubt because she was also the first Miss America with red hair. Riding on her pageant fame, Venus was wooed by Hollywood, but …

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DCS: josephine baker

15 year-old Josephine Baker began her career dancing on the streets of St. Louis. She was recruited to perform in the vaudeville circuit and eventually traveled to New York. She was a chorus girl during the Harlem Renaissance and was featured in Broadway revues alongside the great Adelaide Hall. Josephine, along with most African-American performers …

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DCS: mark frechette

Sally Dennison, a Hollywood casting director, saw Mark Frehette, a Boston carpenter, yelling at a woman on the street. The angered Mark hurled a flowerpot at the woman from his third-floor vantage point and continued his vicious shouting. Sally was captivated. She quickly brought the young hothead to her director, Michelangelo Antonioni. She explained, “He’s …

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DCS: lynne frederick

Lynne Frederick aspired to be a math teacher, but her delicate, “fairy tale princess” looks pointed her towards a career as an actress. As a teenager, she was featured in numerous films in her native England, including the historical drama Nicholas and Alexandra in 1971 and  Henry VIII and His Six Wives a year later. She was named “Best …

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DCS: george a. romero

A graduate of Carnegie Mellon University, budding filmmaker George Romero was making commercials and shooting segments for the popular children’s show Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood. He teamed up with writer John Russo and wrote a script for a comedy-horror film called Monster Flick. The pair raised $114,000 and shot the film in and around their native Pittsburgh with …

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DCS: albert salmi

Albert Salmi loved the stage and believed that film and television roles paled in comparison to the legitimate theater. In 1955, Albert starred as “Bo Decker” in the Broadway production of William Inge’s Bus Stop. He was offered to reprise the role in the 1956 film opposite Marilyn Monroe, but declined. Don Murray took the …

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DCS: pepi lederer

Young Josephine Lederer was a welcome and frequent guest at Hearst Castle, the guest of publishing magnate William Randolph Hearst and her aunt, Hearst’s lover, actress Marion Davies. Hearst was fond of Marion’s niece, as well as Josephine’s brother, future screenwriter Charlie Lederer. The energetic and vivacious Josephine earned herself the nickname “Peppy.” She altered …

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DCS: stephen furst

“Flounder, you can’t spend your whole life worrying about your mistakes! You fucked up! You trusted us!” Stephen Furst was delivering pizzas to supplement his struggling acting career. Ever the innovator, he included his head shot with every pie he delivered. One day, he made a delivery to producer Matty Simmons, who was getting ready …

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