RIP Jean Simmons

I don’t really feel qualified to do obits like this one but two-time Oscar nominee Simmons passed away nearly a week ago at age 80 and I thought it somebody should mention it in Café Society. (As I’ve said before on other similar occasions, it’s times like this that I really miss Eve.)

Here’s David Thomson’s obituary in The Guardian.

As for my take, although she continued acting until very recently, her heyday (the 50’s and 60’s) was just slightly before my time. That being said, from the movies I’ve seen her in, I thought Simmons was a very underrated actress. Also, on a purely superficial note, when she was in her prime, I would’ve picked her over any of her contemporaries (i.e, Monroe, Taylor, Hepburn, etc.) if given the choice (although she would’ve just edged out Hepburn).

(What can I say? I have a thing for brunettes with cheekbones, big prominent eyes, and accents.)
(Oh, and I save you the trouble and pre-emptively say, “This is really going to put a crink in the next KISS reunion tour.”)

Damn, I was going to start this thread lat week, but forgot.

I had a good time telling people “Jean Simmons died,” then waiting a few seconds before saying “Not the KISS singer.”

Yes, I am very warped.

She was a lovely lady. I’ve liked her since Spartacus. Rest in peace Jean.

Guys and Dolls as Sgt Sarah Brown.

AND as Admiral Norah Satie in ST:TNG! The button tugging thing gave her away.

Damn. Just…damn. I’ve adored her ever since I saw Spartacus back when I was a freshman in high school. One of my first big Hollywood crushes.

Requiescat in pacem.

I haven’t seen the episode but I’ve noticed her guest shot on ST:TNG has been mentioned a surprising number of times (especially on the FARK message board). I think because of that, Simmons’ passing got a lot more attention then I’d figure for an actress who was a star more than 50 years ago.

On a different point, I don’t know if she would’ve warranted inclusion in this recent thread about actors and actresses who should’ve been bigger stars (there was some dispute within the thread about who would qualify) but David Thomson’s obituary on Simmons (which I linked in the OP) could certainly be cited as a supporting argument.

Considering **Spartacus **was 50 years ago, that fact might also make you feel a little old.

I fell in love with her about the same time Sky Masterson* did**.

CMC fnord!
*Much to my embarrassment it was only this year that I finally got around to actually watching Guys and Dolls.
**That I was negative 8 years old at the time the movie was made prolly gave Sky an edge. :frowning:

TCM did ran several of her movies last night. It’s the first time I’d seen Great Expectations. Simmons was only 17. I didn’t stay up to watch the next Simmons movie. She was pursued by Howard Hughes

I need to rent Hamlet with Simmons and Laurence Olivier.

all are office safe

JeanSimmons1.jpg This is my favorite of Jean.

Annex-SimmonsJeanHamletDr.Macro.jpg another nice photo of Jean



She also ended up suing Hughes (see third paragraph) after his heavy-handed mismanagement almost killed her career in the US.

The suit settled out of court but, from a legal standpoint, the fact the agreement between Hughes/RKO and Rank was made without Simmons’ knowledge–let alone input–more than likely would’ve resulted in a trial that saw Hughes taking a big hit in terms of money and bad publicity at a time RKO was already taking in water.

In any case, one notable result of Simmons’ stormy relationship with Hughes and RKO was that it was a notable step in the erosion of the Hollywood studio system. Another was the career of Audrey Hepburn. One of the movies Hughes blocked Simmons from doing was Roman Holiday for which she was the first choice. As a replacement, an unknown Hepburn was cast. She of course won an Oscar for the role that ended up launching her hugely successful career.

Nah. I was a freshman in high school in 1985, so she was already 56 at the time. If I want to feel old, I just calculate the number of times per day I feel the urge to order the damned neighborhood kids off of my lawn.

I double checked that it was who I thought. I’ve seen in her in TV movies/miniseries and the like. But the first thing I thought of was her voice in voiceovers. I love older movies, so I’ll have to go check some of hers out.

Sorry. Didn’t mean to age you. (For the record, I’m only a few years older than you.) I don’t know about you but I feel rather awkward when I’m watching an old movie and find myself crushing on an actress who I realize in real life is within my parents’ or grandparents’ age bracket.

As for Simmons’ later work, did anybody see those documentaries on (I think) A&E about the Bible? Simmons read the Biblical passages on the show and I have to say made me think that if there is a God and She’s female, She’d probably sound a lot like her.

This past weekend I caught Howl’s Moving Castle on a cable channel. Watching the credits at the end I was surprised to learn that Simmons did the voice for the elder Sophie in the English language version. Very cool.