name: Norman Parkinson
original name: Ronald William Parkinson Smith
birth place: London, Englan
birth date: 21 April 1913
zodiac sign: Taurus
death place: Singapore
death date: 15 February 1990
Norman Parkinson is one of the foremost British portrait and fashion photographers. He was born in London, and educated at Westminster School. He began his career in 1931 as an apprentice to the court photographers, Speaight and Sons Ltd. In 1934 he opened his own studio together with Norman Kibblewhite, at 1,Dover Street off London's Piccadilly. From 1935 to 1940 he worked for Harper's Bazaar and Bystander magazines.
Once referring to himself as “The world’s most famous unknown photographer”, Norman Parkinson (1913-1990) left an indelible mark on the world of fashion photography.
Full of spirited wit, his "still, moving pictures" set the fashion world ablaze in the post-war years, where previously, according to Parkinson, “all the girls had their knees bolted together.”
His technique of "action realism", conjuring images out of the unexpected, was seen as a breath of fresh air to a world of fashion photography, and humour played a central role in many of his photographs which often included himself.
During the Second World War he served as a reconnaissance photographer over France for the Royal Air Force.
I like to make people look as good as they'd like to look, and with luck, a shade better,"
As well as magazine work he also created celebrated calendars featuring glamorous young women. His years as an official Royal Photographer began in 1969 when he took official photographs for Princess Anne’s 19th birthday and an Official photograph of Prince Charles investiture as Prince Of Wales. When previous royal photographer, Cecil Beaton, died in 1980, Parkinson took over.
In 1981, Norman Parkinson was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire.
In 1990, Norman Parkinson died whist on location in Singapore shooting for Town & Country.
Name: Alessandro Preziosi
Birth place: Naples, Italy
Birth date: 19 april 1973
Languages: Italian, English
2003-2004: TV series Elisa di Rivombrosa as Fabrizio Ristori.
2007 film I Vicerè as principle character Consalvo
In 1894, Italian Writer Federico de Roberto (Napoli, 16 gennaio 1861 – Catania, 26 luglio 1927) wrote the novel I Vicerè.It was the story about Uzeda, a Sicilian princely family in 19th century Sicily faithful to the Bourbon kings, begins to lose its power, with the Unification of Italy in 1861 and the rise to power of Giuseppe Garibaldi and Vittorio Emanuele II, ). In 2007 Italian director Roberto Faenza adapted it into a historical film with the same title, and Alessandro Preziosi played the principle character Consalvo.
María África Gracia Vidal conocida como María Montez (Barahona, República Dominicana, 1912 - Suresnes, Francia, 1951), La Reina Del Technicolor fue una cantautora dominicana que ganó fama y popularidad en la década de 1940 como una belleza exótica protagonizando una serie de películas de aventuras filmadas en Technicolor. Su imagen en la pantalla fue de la típica seductora que usaba vestidos con trajes de fantasía y joyas brillantes. Montez era conocida como "La Reina del Technicolor".
A lo largo de su carrera Maria Montez participó en alrededor de 26 películas, 21 de las cuales fueron rodadas en Estados Unidos y cinco en Europa. El apellido Montez lo tomó en homenaje a la bailarina Lola Montez.
María África Gracia Vidal nació en la provincia de Barahona, República Dominicana, siendo la segunda de diez hijos del español Isidoro Gracia y la dominicana Teresa Vidal. Su padre se dedicaba a la exportación de madera y a la venta de tejidos.
A temprana edad, Montez aprendió a hablar inglés y fue educada en un convento católico de Santa Cruz de Tenerife. A mediados de la década de 1930, su padre fue nombrado cónsul español en Belfast, Irlanda del Norte, adonde la familia se mudó. Fue allí donde Montez conoció a su primer marido, William G. McFeeters, con quien se casó a los 17 años.
En el libro Maria Montez, Su Vida de Margarita Vicens de Morales, edición de 2003, en la página 26, se puede ver una copia del certificado de nacimiento de María Montez, probando que su nombre original era María África Gracia Vidal.
El 28 de noviembre de 1932 se casó con el banquero irlandés William McFeeters, quien era el representante del First National City Bank of New York en la provincia de Barahona y con quien estuvo casada casi siete años, hasta su partida a Nueva York.
Su primer trabajo fue posar para la portada de una revista por la suma de US$50 en Nueva York.
Decidida a convertirse en una actriz de teatro, contrató a un agente y creó una hoja de vida que la hacía varios años más joven, poniendo en la fecha de nacimiento "1917" en algunos casos y "1918" en otros. Finalmente, aceptó una oferta de Universal Pictures, haciendo su debut cinematográfico en la película B Boss of Bullion City dirigida por Ray Taylor y protagonizada por Johnny Mack Brown.
Su belleza pronto la convirtió en la pieza central de las películas de aventuras en Technicolor de la Universal, en particular las seis películas en las que actuó junto a Jon Hall, como son Arabian Nights, White Savage, Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves, Cobra Woman, Gypsy Wildcat y Sudan. Montez además apareció en la película Western Pirates of Monterey junto a Rod Cameron y en The Exile, esta última dirigida por Max Ophüls y protagonizada por Douglas Fairbanks, Jr.
La identificación con esta imagen cinematográfica fue tal que María Montez era conocida como "The Queen of Technicolor" (La Reina del Technicolor).
Mientras trabajaba en Hollywood, conoció al actor francés Jean-Pierre Aumont, con quien se casó el 13 de julio de 1943, pero éste tuvo que marcharse unos días después de su boda para servir en las Fuerzas Francesas Libres y luchar contra la Alemania nazi en el teatro europeo en la Segunda Guerra Mundial. Al final de la Segunda Guerra Mundial, la pareja tuvo una hija, María Cristina (conocida como Tina Aumont). Luego se mudaron a una casa en Suresnes, en el suburbio oeste de París, durante la Cuarta República Francesa.
En enero de 1951, Montez apareció en la obra l'Ile Heureuse ( La isla feliz) escrita por su marido. También escribió tres libros: Forever Is A Long Time, Hollywood Wolves I Have Tamed y Reunion In Lilith. De estos libros, sólo fueron publicados los dos primeros. Asimismo se dedicó a escribir una serie de poesías, entre ellas Crepúsculo, la cual ganó el 'Asociación The Manuscriters.
Montez murió a los 39 años de edad, el 7 de septiembre de 1951, aparentemente debido a un ataque al corazón y fue encontrada ahogada en el baño de su residencia en Suresnes. Fue enterrada en el Cementerio de Montparnasse. En su tumba se muestra 1918 como su fecha de nacimiento, siendo 1912 la real.
María África Gracia Vidal (6 June 1912 – 7 September 1951), known as The Queen of Technicolor, was a Dominican motion picture actress who gained fame and popularity in the 1940s as an exotic beauty starring in a series of filmed-in-Technicolor costume adventure films. Her screen image was that of a hot-blooded Latin seductress, dressed in fanciful costumes and sparkling jewels. She became so identified with these adventure epics that she became known as "The Queen of Technicolor". Over her career, Montez appeared in 26 films, 21 of which were made in North America and the last five were made in Europe.
María Montez was born María Antonia García Vidal de Santo Silas (some sources cite María África Gracia Vidal or María África Antonia García Vidal de Santo Silas as her birth name) in Barahona, Dominican Republic.She was one of ten children born to Isidoro García, a Spaniard, and Teresa Vidal, a Dominican of Criollo descent. Montez was educated at the Sacred Heart Convent in Santa Cruz de Tenerife.
In the mid-1930s, her father was appointed to the Spanish consulship in Belfast, Northern Ireland where the family moved. It was there that Montez met her first husband, William G.
In 1932, María Montez married William G. McFeeters, a wealthy Irish banker.
Maria Montez was spotted by a talent scout while visiting New York. Her first film was Boss of Bullion City, a Johnny Mack Brown western produced by Universal Pictures. This was the first movie where she played a leading role and the only role where she speaks some Spanish
Her next film was The Invisible Woman (1940). It was made for Universal Pictures, who signed her to a long term contract starting at $150 a week.
Universal did not have a "glamour girl" like other studios - an equivalent to Hedy Lamarr (MGM), Dorothy Lamour (Paramount), Betty Grable (20th Century Fox), Rita Hayworth (Columbia) or Ann Sheridan (Warner Bros). They decided to groom Maria Montez to take this role and she received a lot of publicity. Montez was also a keen self-promoter. In the words of The Los Angeles Times "she borrowed an old but sure-fire technique to get ahead in the movies. She acted like a movie star. She leaned on the vampish tradition set up by Nazimova and Theda Bara... She went in heavily for astrology. Her name became synonymous with exotic enchantresses in sheer harem pantaloons." She took on a "star" pose in her private life. One newspaper called her "the best commissary actress in town... In the studio cafe, Maria puts on a real show. Always Maria makes an entrance."
In June 1941 Montez's contract with Universal was renewed. She graduated to leading parts with South of Tahiti, co-starring Brian Donlevy. She also replaced Peggy Moran in the title role of The Mystery of Marie Roget (1942). Public response to South of Tahiti was enthusiastic enough for the studio to cast Montez in her first starring part, Arabian Nights. She claimed in 1942 she was making $250 a week.
Arabian Nights was a prestigious production for Universal, its first shot in three-strip Technicolor, produced by Walter Wanger and starring Montez, Jon Hall and Sabu. The resulting movie was a big hit and established Montez as a star.
While working in Hollywood, Montez met French actor Jean-Pierre Aumont. Aumont later wrote "to say that between us it was love at first sight would be an understatement". They married on 14 July 1943 at Montez's home in Beverly Hills. Charles Boyer was Aumont's best man.
According to Aumont "it was a strange house. You didn't answer the phone or read the mail; the doors were always open. Diamonds were left around like ashtrays. Lives of the Saints lay between two issues of movie magazines. An astrologer, a physical culture expert, a priest, a Chinese cook, and two Hungarian masseurs were part of the furnishings. During her massage sessions, Montez granted audiences."
Aumont had to leave a few days after wedding Montez to serve in the Free French Forces which were fighting against Nazi Germany in the European Theatre of World War II.
At the end of World War II, the couple had a daughter, Maria Christina (also known as Tina Aumont), born in Hollywood on 14 February 1946.
Montez said she was "tired of being a fairy tale princess all the time" and wanted to learn to act. She fought with Universal for different parts. She was suspended for refusing the lead in Frontier Gal.
In 1946 Montez visited France with Aumont and both became excited about the prospect of making movies there. Aumont says they were determined to get out of their respective contracts in Hollywood and move.
In August 1947 Universal refused to pick up their option on Montez' services and she went freelance.
Montez and Aumont formed their own production company, Christina Productions.They moved to a home in Suresnes, Île-de-France in the western suburb of Paris under the French Fourth Republic. According to Aumont, they were going to star in Orpheus (1950) which Aumont says Jean Cocteau wrote for him and Montez. However the filmmaker decided to use other actors.
Instead, in July 1948 Montez and Aumont made Wicked City (1949) for Christina Productions with Villiers directing and Aumont contributing to the script. It was one of the first US-French co productions after the war.
In 1949 Aumont announced that they would get divorced but they remained together until Montez's death.
Aumont had begun writing plays and Montez appeared in a one-woman production, L'lle Heureuse ("The Happy Island"). Reviews were poor.
After that, Montez made several films, none of them successful. then she made a movie with her husband, Revenge of the Pirates (1951). It would be the last film she ever made.
Montez also wrote three books, two of which were published, as well as penning a number of poems.
The 39-year-old Montez died in Suresnes, France on 7 September 1951 after apparently suffering a heart attack and drowning while taking a hot bath.
She was buried in the Cimetière du Montparnasse in Paris where her tombstone gives her amended year of birth (1918), not the actual year of birth (1912).
In the book, Maria Montez, Su Vida by Margarita Vicens de Morales, there is a copy of Montez's birth certificate proving that her original name was Maria Africa Gracia Vidal.
There is also a copy of a fake biography made by Universal Pictures, where it says that Montez was educated in Tenerife and that she lived in Ireland, which was never true. Instead, it claims that Montez lived the first 27 years of her life in the Dominican Republic.
She left the bulk of her $200,000 estate ($2 million today) to her husband and their five-year-old daughter Tina Aumont.
Maria Montez fan site