Friday, January 26, 2007

Happy Birthday Joan Leslie!

We don't usually do birthday shout-outs here, but Joan's a girl from D-Town, and we like to celebrate the hometown stars. Born January 26, 1925, in Detroit, Joan's celebrating her 82nd birthday. She worked opposite Humphrey Bogart and Gary Cooper when she was sixteen, James Cagney when she was seventeen, and Fred Astaire when she was eighteen -- not a bad resume for a teenager! This website devoted to her is a nice resource with some great pictures (including magazine covers from the 40s), as well as several interviews and news items.

Joan's mostly known for her ingenue roles at Warner Bros., but I rather liked her performance in Nicholas Ray's campy Born to Be Bad (RKO, 1950), a film that showed she could have been more than the pretty, spunky girl-next-door.

What's kinda crazy (to me at least) is that Joan Leslie and Paul Newman were born on the exact same day (Jan. 26, 1925), and yet they seem to be from two different movie eras entirely -- Joan, the essence of war-time studio system Hollywood, and Newman, the rebellious modern actor from the new Hollywood of the 50s and 60s. Happy birthday to both!

1 comment:

Chris F. said...

I've been a fan of Joan's for almost 20 years now. I hear that she is doing well.