Sunday, 20 September 2009

all the king's women #9 - hope lange

born in 1933, Hope Lange acted on television and Broadway before making her film debut alongside Marilyn Monroe and Don Murray in Bus Stop (1956). she married Murray in April of that year, and the couple had two children together, before divorcing in 1961. favourable reviews led to a major role in the then 'risque' film Peyton Place with Lana Turner. the film, which was nominated for 9 Oscars, was almost a box office bomb, performing poorly in its first few weeks of release. it wasn't until news broke of star Lana Turner's infamous scandal [her affair with mobster Johnny Stompanato, and his death at the hands of her daughter] and national coverage of the subsequent murder trial, that the film's box office began to soar. this steamy film is often hailed as the spark that led to television soap operas.

in the next few years, Lange made films with Robert Wagner, Montgomery Clift and Joan Crawford, among others. in 1961, she starred in Wild in the Country, Elvis' seventh film, and one of my personal favourites (for its melodrama and its unforgettable moments - both good and bad). Lange plays Irene Sperry, a psychologist who councels the young and troubled Glenn Tyler (Elvis), encouraging him to pursue a literary career.

Hope's next project was Pocketful of Miracles alongside Glenn Ford, for whom she left her first husband. the two had a very public long term relationship, but never married. Hope would marry twice more - in 1963 to producer-director Alan J. Pakula, whom she divorced in 1971, and again in 1986, to theatrical producer Charles Hollerith, with whom she would remain for the rest of her life. her career would take her back to television and Broadway, with highlights including 3 years on the tv series The Ghost & Mrs. Muir, 3 seasons on The New Dick Van Dyke Show, and 12 television movies. Lange's later career included roles in Blue Velvet(1986) and Clear and Present Danger (1994).

Hope died in December 2003 in Santa Monica, California of an ischemic colitis infection, at the age of 70.


Alicia @ boylerpf said...

I do so remember watching her in The Ghost & Mrs Muir (I've aged myself I know). I thought she was so elegant and beautiful...which she clearly was!

Ms. B said...

She's so gorgeous! I love all the photos!!