Lana Turner, Talk:Lana Turner
– June 29
) was an Academy award nominee American film actress
and sex symbol
. On-screen, Turner was well-known for the glamor and sensuality she brought to almost all her movies. Off-screen, she led a stormy and colorful private life which included seven husbands, numerous lovers, and a famous murder scandal.
Lana Turner was born Julia Jean Mildred Frances Turner
in Wallace, Idaho
, the daughter of John Virgil Turner, a miner from Hohenwald, Tennessee
, and Mildred Frances Cowan, a 16-year-old Alabama girl.
Until her film career took off, she was known to family and friends as Judy. Hard times eventually forced the family to re-locate to San Francisco
, where John and Mildred soon separated.
On December 14
, John Turner won a bit of money at a traveling craps game, stuffed his winnings in his left sock, and headed for home. He was later found dead on a street corner, his left sock missing. The robbery and murder was never solved. Soon after, Mildred Turner developed health problems and was advised by her doctor to move to a dryer climate. She and her 10-year-old daughter moved to Los Angeles
Turner's discovery at Schwab's Drug Store
has become one of Hollywood
's most enduring show-business legends. The true story differs only slightly from that legend. As a 16-year-old student at Hollywood High, Turner decided to skip a typing class and buy a Coke at the Top Hat Cafe. There, she was spotted by William R. Wilkerson
, publisher of the Hollywood Reporter
. Wilkerson was struck by her beauty and physique, and referred her to the actor/comedian/talent
agent Zeppo Marx
. Marx's agency immediately signed her on and introduced her to film director Mervyn LeRoy
, who cast her in her first film They Won't Forget
(1937).thumb|left||180px|Turner in [They Won't Forget.
Turner earned the nickname "The Sweater Girl
" from her form-fitting attire in a scene in They Won't Forget
. She reached the height of her fame in the 1940s
. During World War II
, Turner became a popular pin-up girl
due to her popularity in such films such as Ziegfeld Girl
, Johnny Eager
, and four films with MGM's king of the lot: Clark Gable
(the films' success was only heightened by gossip column rumors about a relationship between the two).
After the war, Turner's career hit a new high with the classic 1946 film noir The Postman Always Rings Twice
, co-starring John Garfield
During the 1950s, Turner starred in a series of films that failed to succeed at the box office, a situation which MGM attempted to remedy by casting her in musicals. The first, 1951's Mr. Imperium
, was a flop, while 1952's The Merry Widow
was more successful. She gave a widely-praised performance in Vincente Minnelli
's The Bad and the Beautiful
, and later starred with John Wayne
in the adventure film The Sea Chase
. She was then cast in the epic The Prodigal
, but the film and her performance in general was not well received. After 1956's Diane
, MGM opted not to renew her contract.
Despite this, Turner's career recovered after her appearance in the hugely-successful big screen adaptation of Grace Metalious
's best-selling novel Peyton Place
, for which she was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress
. Douglas Sirk
's Imitation of Life
also proved to be a big commercial success, and since Turner had accepted a percentage of the box office receipts in lieu of salary, she was paid handsomely for the role. Critics and audiences couldn't help noticing that both Peyton
borrowed from Turner's private life -- a single mother coping with a troubled teenage daughter. In 1961, she made her last film appearance under her old contract with MGM, starring with Bob Hope
in Bachelor in Paradise
. Her last major starring role in a film was Madame X
made by Universal Artists in 1966.
Off-screen, Turner was married eight times to seven different husbands, and had many lovers, including Tyrone Power
(whom she calls the love of her life in her autobiography
), Howard Hughes
, and a minor gangster and abusive boyfriend named Johnny Stompanato
. Turner reportedly said of her many love affairs, "I liked the boys, and the boys liked me."
Turner later began living with Stompanato. Once he had stormed onto a movie set while Turner was filming Another Time, Another Place
, with costar Sean Connery
, later of James Bond
fame. Stompanato accused Connery of having an affair with Turner, and pointed a gun at him. Connery took the gun away from Stompanato, beat him, and threw him off the movie set (see http://www.granta.com/extracts/2144
). After a violent argument, Stompanato was fatally stabbed by Turner's daughter, Cheryl Crane
, and the case quickly became a media sensation. The killing was deemed a justifiable homicide at a coroner's inquest at which Turner provided dramatic testimony, and of which some observers have said was the acting performance of her life.
Her husbands were:
*Bandleader Artie Shaw
Josef Stephen Crane (1942-43, 1943-44);
**She married Crane a second time, after their first marriage was annulled because a previous divorce of his had not yet been finalized.
Henry J. Topping, Jr. (1948-52);
*Actor Lex Barker
(1953-57), whom she divorced after her daughter Cheryl claimed that he molested her;
Fred May (1960-62);
*Businessman Robert Eaton
*Nightclub hypnotist Ronald Peller
(a.k.a. Ronald Dante) (1969-72).
In the 1970s
, Turner appeared in several television
roles, most notably one season (1982-83) on the series Falcon Crest
, but the majority of her final decade was spent out of the public eye.
She died rather suddenly at the age of 74 in 1995 of complications from the throat cancer
which was diagnosed in 1992
, and which she had been battling ever since, at her home in Century City, Los Angeles, California
. She was, until her death, a very heavy smoker.
She was survived by her only child, her daughter, Cheryl Crane
, and Cheryl's female life partner
, whom she said she accepted "as a second daughter". They inherited some of Lana's sizeable estate
, built through shrewd real estate
holdings and investments
. However, the majority of her estate was left to her maid.
For her contribution to the motion picture industry, Lana Turner has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame
at 6241 Hollywood Blvd.
The eminent American poet Frank O'Hara
wrote a poem titled "Lana Turner Has Collapsed" inspired by Turner after seeing a headline about her soon after her lover Stompanato's murder. The Stompanato incident is also alluded to in a short scene in the film L.A. Confidential
The American singer Tom Russell
mentions Turner in his song "Tijuana Bible," which chronicles the death and (fictionalized?) secrets of Johnny Stompanato
. Specifically, the song opens with the lyric "Lana Turner's daughter killed Johnny Stompanato, because Johnny beat up Lana down on Fifth and Alvarado."
*A Star Is Born
*They Won't Forget
*The Great Garrick
*The Adventures of Marco Polo
*Love Finds Andy Hardy
(1938) (scenes deleted)
*Four's a Crowd
*Rich Man, Poor Girl
*Calling Dr. Kildare
*These Glamour Girls
*Two Girls on Broadway
*We Who Are Young
*Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
*Somewhere I'll Find You
(1943) (short subject)
*The Youngest Profession
*Show Business at War
(1943) (short subject)
*Du Barry Was a Lady
*Marriage Is a Private Affair
*Keep Your Powder Dry
*Week-End at the Waldorf
*The Postman Always Rings Twice
*Green Dolphin Street
*The Three Musketeers
*A Life of Her Own
*The Merry Widow
*The Bad and the Beautiful
*The Flame and the Flesh
*The Sea Chase
*The Rains of Ranchipur
*The Lady Takes a Flyer
*Another Time, Another Place
*Imitation of Life
*Portrait in Black
*By Love Possessed
*Bachelor in Paradise
*Who's Got the Action?
*Love Has Many Faces
*The Big Cube
*Her boyfriend when she attended Hollywood High was Joseph Wapner
, who would achieve fame on The People's Court
* imdb name|id=0001805|name=Lana
* tcmdb name|id=195162|name=Lana Turner, LanaTurner, LanaTurner, LanaTurner, LanaTurner, LanaTurner, LanaTurner, LanaTurner, LanaTurner, Lanaar:لانا تيرنرde:Lana Turneres:Lana Turnerfr:Lana Turnerit:Lana Turnernl:Lana Turnerja:ラナ・ターナーpt:Lana Turnerfi:Lana Turnersv:Lana Turner