Anne Francis  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Anne Lloyd Francis (September 16, 1930 - January 2, 2011) was an American actress, famous for her role in the science fiction film classic Forbidden Planet (1956), and as the female private detective in the television series Honey West (1965–1966). She won a Golden Globe and was nominated for an Emmy award for her role in Honey West. Francis holds the distinction of starring in the first TV series with a woman detective character's name in the title.

For her role in Honey West, Francis won the Golden Globe award as best actress in a TV series, and she was nominated for an Emmy award for the same role.

Francis entered show business at a young age, working as a model at age 5, to help her family make ends meet during the Great Depression, and making her Broadway debut at age 11. Over her career, Ms. Francis appeared in scores of TV shows and several movies, including several appearances on The Twilight Zone, including the title character in "Jess-Belle", and most notably as Marsha White in the episode titled "The After Hours". In it, Francis is gradually revealed as a department store mannequin who has enjoyed a brief vacation amongst the living. Francis was a mainstay of 1970s television movies, and she returned to TV to portray "Mama Jo" for the 1984-86 TV-detective series Riptide.

In 1956, Anne appeared as Altaira in Forbidden Planet, a quite literate and well-produced "A" picture (based upon William Shakespeare's The Tempest), released by Metro Goldwyn Mayer, co-starring Walter Pidgeon and Leslie Nielsen. Playing the naive daughter of Pidgeon's brilliant but conflicted Dr. Morbius (the "Prospero" character from "The Tempest"), she added a touch of budding sexuality. Her character's love interest was a serious starship captain played by Leslie Nielsen. The role garnered her a generation of baby-boomer sci-fi fans.

In 1965, Francis turned to series television and was cast as "Private Eyeful" Honey West, a sexy private detective with a pet ocelot. The character was initially introduced on the popular TV series Burke's Law. Although the half-hour Honey West lasted only one season, the role added lustre to the actress' reputation. Anne is still widely recognized, as indicated in the lyrics of the song Science Fiction Double Feature from The Rocky Horror Show. During the 1980-81 television season, she had a recurring role as Arliss Cooper on Dallas.

Francis was married to Bamlet L. Price, Jr., from May 1952 to April 1955, and to Dr. Robert Abeloff from 1960-1964. Abeloff and Francis had one daughter. She did not remarry after divorcing Dr. Abeloff. As of March 2006, she lives in Santa Barbara, California.

In 1953, Anne's measurements were a trim 34-22-34 as a starlet. By 1965, in time for her Honey West role, she was a more well-rounded 36-24-36.

She is currently battling lung cancer, and documenting her progress on her web site.

Filmography





Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Anne Francis" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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