Thursday, December 11, 2008

R.I.P. Betty Page

As a follow up to my post last week, here is news of betty's passing:

LOS ANGELES – Bettie Page, the 1950s secretary-turned-model whose controverisal photographs in skimpy attire or none at all helped set the stage for the 1960s sexual revolution, died Thursday. She was 85.

Page suffered a heart attack last week in Los Angeles and never regained consciousness, her agent Mark Roesler said. Before the heart attack, Page had been hospitalized for three weeks with pneumonia.

"She captured the imagination of a generation of men and women with her free spirit and unabashed sensuality," Roesler said. "She is the embodiment of beauty.
Page, who was also known as Betty, attracted national attention with magazine photographs of her sensuous figure in bikinis and see-through lingerie that were quickly tacked up on walls in military barracks, garages and elsewhere, where they remained for years.

Her photos included a centerfold in the January 1955 issue of then-fledgling Playboy magazine, as well as controversial sadomasochistic poses.

The latter helped contribute to her mysterious disappearance from the public eye, which lasted decades and included years during which she battled mental illness and became a born-again Christian.

After resurfacing in the 1990s, she occasionally granted interviews but refused to allow her picture to be taken.

"I don't want to be photographed in my old age," she told an interviewer in 1998. "I feel the same way with old movie stars. ... It makes me sad. We want to remember them when they were young.

The 21st century indeed had people remembering her just as she was. She became the subject of songs, biographies, Web sites, comic books, movies and documentaries. A new generation of fans bought thousands of copies of her photos, and some feminists hailed her as a pioneer of women's liberation.

Gretchen Mol portrayed her in 2005's "The Notorious Bettie Page" and Paige Richards had the role in 2004's "Bettie Page: Dark Angel." Page herself took part in the 1998 documentary "Betty Page: Pinup Queen.

Her career began one day in October 1950 when she took a respite from her job as a secretary in a New York office for a walk along the beach at Coney Island. An amateur photographer named Jerry Tibbs admired the 27-year-old's firm, curvy body and asked her to pose.

Looking back on the career that followed, she told Playboy in 1998, "I never thought it was shameful. I felt normal. It's just that it was much better than pounding a typewriter eight hours a day, which gets monotonous.

Nudity didn't bother her, she said, explaining: "God approves of nudity. Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, they were naked as jaybirds.

In 1951, Page fell under the influence of a photographer and his sister who specialized in S&M. They cut her hair into the dark bangs that became her signature and posed her in spiked heels and little else. She was photographed with a whip in her hand, and in one session she was spread-eagled between two trees, her feet dangling.

"I thought my arms and legs would come out of their sockets," she said later.

Moralists denounced the photos as perversion, and Sen. Estes Kefauver of Tennessee, Page's home state, launched a congressional investigation.

Page quickly retreated from public view, later saying she was hounded by federal agents who waved her nude photos in her face. She also said she believed that, at age 34, her days as "the girl with the perfect figure" were nearly over.

She moved to Florida in 1957 and married a much younger man, as an early marriage to her high school sweetheart had ended in divorce.

Her second marriage also failed, as did a third, and she suffered a nervous breakdown.

In 1959, she was lying on a sea wall in Key West when she saw a church with a white neon cross on top. She walked inside and became a born-again Christian.

After attending Bible school, she wanted to serve as a missionary but was turned down because she had been divorced. Instead, she worked full-time for evangelist Billy Graham's ministry.

A move to Southern California in 1979 brought more troubles.

She was arrested after an altercation with her landlady, and doctors who examined her determined she had acute schizophrenia. She spent 20 months in a state mental hospital in San Bernardino.

A fight with another landlord resulted in her arrest, but she was found not guilty because of insanity. She was placed under state supervision for eight years.

"She had a very turbulent life," Todd Mueller, a family friend and autograph seller, told The Associated Press on Thursday. "She had a temper to her.

Mueller said he first met Page after tracking her down in the 1990s and persuaded her to do an autograph signing event.

He said she was a hit and sold about 3,000 autographs, usually for $200 to $300 each.

"Eleanor Roosevelt, we got $40 to $50. ... Bettie Page outsells them all," he told The AP last week.

Born April 22, 1923, in Nashville, Tenn., Page said she grew up in a family so poor "we were lucky to get an orange in our Christmas stockings.

The family included three boys and three girls, and Page said her father molested all of the girls.

After the Pages moved to Houston, her father decided to return to Tennessee and stole a police car for the trip. He was sent to prison, and for a time Betty lived in an orphanage.

In her teens she acted in high school plays, going on to study drama in New York and win a screen test from 20th Century Fox before her modeling career took off.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

And the hits just keep coming...

After being in the hospital for pneumonia the past couple weeks, Pinup Queen Betty Page has had a heart attack and is currently comatose and listed as in critical condition. Please include her in your prayers tonight.

Friday, December 5, 2008

R.I.P. Uncle Forry

Forrest J. Ackerman, the creator of Famous Monsters Of Filmland Magazine, collector and archivist of the history of fantastic films, creator of the comics character Vampirella, inspiration to such people as Steven Spielberg, George Lucas, and Stephen King, and a personal friend to every fan of horror and science fiction whether you have met him or not, has passed away. He has spent his last few weeks bedridden at home, refusing pain medication so he could be lucid enough to respond to fan emails, and to be able to say goodbye to as many of his "nieces and nephews" as he could. No one can ever replace him, and he will always be missed.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Previews of coming attractions 12-2-08

Here's a listing of genre related titles coming out on DVD for December 2nd!
My personal pick of the week is Wanted, extremely loosely based on the incredible comic series by mark Millar, this movie takes the story in a much different direction (not a mention of superheroes or supervillains) yet maintains the same level of thought provoking originality. This was a must see on the big screen and if you've waited till now to see it you'll be kicking yourself that you didn't go.

Also coming out Tuesday:

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Hello, boils and ghouls!!

I just wanted to post SOMETHING on here tonight after spending the last couple hours playing around with the various widgets and fonts and other blog programming thingamajiggers.

Hopefully this will be something I really get into and will be adding to all the time. My goal is to make this a place for friends to come and read reviews and thoughts on B-movies and to contribute with similar ideas and thoughts.

I also will be partnering with in their associates program. What's that mean you ask? Well over to your, your other right. ye- uh back...THERE on your right is an example of a handy Amazon widgit that will have reccomended titles and such. Any time you click on any of my links to the page, I get a small cut of everything that is purchased on the website that day. That being said, if anyone that regularly comes here and enjoys my page, would be kind enough to use it I would be greatly pleased.

I will be playing around with things here for a little while until I get the hang of how to operate everything and then hopefully start adding material soon.

Have fun, fiends!