Monday, 13 February 2012

The Novak-McGuire conundrum

It's been a while since I played the "connections" game!

So what possible connection could there be between today's birthday girls the fantabulosa Miss Kim Novak (79 today) and Dorothy McGuire of the wonderful McGuire Sisters (84 today)?

Miss Novak, ultra-cool and glamorous screen presence that she was (and is), played the ditzy chorus girl in Pal Joey, the dual-role mysterious blonde in Hitchcock's Vertigo, the witch in Bell, Book and Candle, and many other movie roles before her star faded. She later played upon her position as a cult camp icon by hamming it up in one of my favourite roles of hers, in The Mirror Crack'd, and indeed she is a new "exhibit" in the Dolores Delargo Towers - Museum of Camp for very good reason:

The McGuire Sisters (all three of them still alive) were the darlings of the American variety show circuit in the 1950s - as well as their numerous live performances for presidents and dignitaries, they appeared on the Ed Sullivan, Dean Martin, Danny Kaye, Milton Berle, Andy Williams, Perry Como and Red Skelton shows. They officially retired in 1968, and their own "cult" status was thus assured. Here's one of their classic TV moments:

And the connection? One of the McGuire Sisters' biggest hits was the theme song of the movie that catapulted Miss Novak to fame, Picnic. Given this sultry scene (opposite a very gorgeous William Holden), I am not surprised people sat up and took notice of her:

And here's the song that completes the circle:


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