Deborah Kerr  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Deborah Kerr, (September 30, 1921October 16, 2007) Scottish actress, best known for her perfomances in Bonjour Tristesse and The Innocents.


Her debut was in the British film Contraband in 1940; her scenes were left on the cutting room floor. She followed that with a series of other films, including Hatter's Castle (1942), in which she starred opposite Robert Newton and James Mason. The following year, she played the triple role of the hero's loves in Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger's The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp. It was her role as a troubled nun in Black Narcissus in 1947 which brought her to the attention of Hollywood producers.

Kerr played Karen in From Here to Eternity (1953) for which she received an Oscar nomination for Best Actress.

The American Film Institute acknowledged the iconic status of the scene from that film in which she and Burt Lancaster make love on a Hawaii beach amidst the crashing waves. The organization named it one of "AFI's top 100 Most Romantic Films" of all time.

From then on Kerr's career choices afforded her one of the most versatile screen personas in Hollywood, ranging from nuns (Heaven Knows, Mr. Allison) and mamas' girls (Separate Tables) to an earthy Australian sheep-herder's wife (The Sundowners) to lustful and beautiful screen enchantresses (Beloved Infidel, Bonjour tristesse) and comedy (The Grass is Greener).

Her roles include Anna Leonowens in the film version of the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical The King and I and opposite Cary Grant in An Affair to Remember. In 1966, the producers of Carry on Screaming offered her a fee comparable to that paid to the rest of the cast combined to appear in the film, but she turned it down in favour of appearing in an aborted stage version of Flowers for Algernon.

In 1967, at the age of 46, she appeared as a Bond Girl in Casino Royale.

She abandoned film work in the late 1960s in favour of television and theatre work.

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Deborah Kerr" 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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