Best photos ( Jean Simmons )

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Birth information

31 January 1929 Crouch Hill, London, England, UK

Death information

22 January 2010 Santa Monica, California, USA

Given Name

Jean Merilyn Simmons

How tall is Jean Simmons?

1.63 m

Who is(are) his/her spouse(s)?

Richard Brooks
Stewart Granger

Life Story of Jean Simmons

Demure British beauty Jean Simmons was born January 31, 1929 in Crouch End, London. As a 14-year-old dance student, she was plucked from her school to play Margaret Lockwood's precocious sister in Give Us the Moon (1944), and she went on to make a name for herself in such major British productions as Caesar and Cleopatra (1945), Great Expectations (1946) (as the spoiled, selfish Estella), Black Narcissus (1947) (as a sultry native beauty), Hamlet (1948) (playing Ophelia to Laurence Olivier's great Dane and earning a Best Supporting Actress Oscar nomination), The Blue Lagoon (1949) and So Long at the Fair (1950), among others.

In 1950, she married actor Stewart Granger, and that same year, starred in the Frank Sinatra/Marlon Brando musical Guys and Dolls (1955); she used her own singing voice and earned her first Golden Globe Award. Simmons divorced Granger in 1960 and almost immediately married writer-director Richard Brooks, who cast her as Sister Sharon opposite Burt Lancaster in Elmer Gantry (1960), a memorable adaptation of the Sinclair Lewis novel. That same year, she co-starred with Kirk Douglas in Stanley Kubrick's Spartacus (1960) and played a would-be...

Significant features of Jean Simmons

Often played mildly rebellious characters
Her captivating beauty
Natural brunette hair
Sparkling green eyes
Demure demeanor
Rich, formal voice

Publications and Magazines about Jean Simmons

Jean Simmons Jean Simmons' "Blue Lagoon" Diary. 1949

Biographical movies about Jean Simmons

Jean Simmons: Rose of England 2004

What movies did Jean Simmons play or participate?

Actors Filmography
Shadows in the Sun (2009) Hannah, Thru the Moebius Strip (2005) Shepway, Howl's Moving Castle (2004) Grandma Sophie, Winter Solstice (2003) Countess Lucinda Rhives, Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within (2001) Council Member #2, American Masters (2000) Narrator, Mysteries of the Bible III (1998) Narrator, Her Own Rules (1998) Katherine Stratton, Daisies in December (1995) Katherine Palmer, How to Make an American Quilt (1995) Em, One More Mountain (1994) Sarah Keyes, In the Heat of the Night (1994) Cordelia Woodlin, Angel Falls (1993) Irene Larson, Agatha...

Birth information

31 January 1929 Crouch Hill, London, England, UK

Death information

22 January 2010 Santa Monica, California, USA

Given Name

Jean Merilyn Simmons

How tall is Jean Simmons?

1.63 m

Who is(are) his/her spouse(s)?

Richard Brooks
Stewart Granger

Life Story of Jean Simmons

Demure British beauty Jean Simmons was born January 31, 1929 in Crouch End, London. As a 14-year-old dance student, she was plucked from her school to play Margaret Lockwood's precocious sister in Give Us the Moon (1944), and she went on to make a name for herself in such major British productions as Caesar and Cleopatra (1945), Great Expectations (1946) (as the spoiled, selfish Estella), Black Narcissus (1947) (as a sultry native beauty), Hamlet (1948) (playing Ophelia to Laurence Olivier's great Dane and earning a Best Supporting Actress Oscar nomination), The Blue Lagoon (1949) and So Long at the Fair (1950), among others.

In 1950, she married actor Stewart Granger, and that same year, starred in the Frank Sinatra/Marlon Brando musical Guys and Dolls (1955); she used her own singing voice and earned her first Golden Globe Award. Simmons divorced Granger in 1960 and almost immediately married writer-director Richard Brooks, who cast her as Sister Sharon opposite Burt Lancaster in Elmer Gantry (1960), a memorable adaptation of the Sinclair Lewis novel. That same year, she co-starred with Kirk Douglas in Stanley Kubrick's Spartacus (1960) and played a would-be...

Significant features of Jean Simmons

Often played mildly rebellious characters
Her captivating beauty
Natural brunette hair
Sparkling green eyes
Demure demeanor
Rich, formal voice

Publications and Magazines about Jean Simmons

Jean Simmons Jean Simmons' "Blue Lagoon" Diary. 1949

Biographical movies about Jean Simmons

Jean Simmons: Rose of England 2004

What movies did Jean Simmons play or participate?

Actors Filmography
Shadows in the Sun (2009) Hannah, Thru the Moebius Strip (2005) Shepway, Howl's Moving Castle (2004) Grandma Sophie, Winter Solstice (2003) Countess Lucinda Rhives, Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within (2001) Council Member #2, American Masters (2000) Narrator, Mysteries of the Bible III (1998) Narrator, Her Own Rules (1998) Katherine Stratton, Daisies in December (1995) Katherine Palmer, How to Make an American Quilt (1995) Em, One More Mountain (1994) Sarah Keyes, In the Heat of the Night (1994) Cordelia Woodlin, Angel Falls (1993) Irene Larson, Agatha...

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Jean Simmons in Sinuhe der Ägypter (1954)

She has appeared in one film that has been selected for the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically or aesthetically" significant: Spartacus (1960).

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Robert Mitchum and Jean Simmons in She Couldn't Say No (1953)

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Jean Simmons in Elmer Gantry (1960)

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Burt Lancaster and Jean Simmons in Elmer Gantry (1960)

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Burt Lancaster and Jean Simmons in Elmer Gantry (1960)

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Burt Lancaster, Jean Simmons, Dean Jagger, and Patti Page in Elmer Gantry (1960)

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Burt Lancaster, Jean Simmons, and Dean Jagger in Elmer Gantry (1960)

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Burt Lancaster and Jean Simmons in Elmer Gantry (1960)

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Jean Simmons in Elmer Gantry (1960)

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Jean Simmons in Elmer Gantry (1960)

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Jean Simmons and Patti Page in Elmer Gantry (1960)

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Jean Simmons in Elmer Gantry (1960)

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Burt Lancaster and Jean Simmons in Elmer Gantry (1960)

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Jean Simmons in Elmer Gantry (1960)

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Burt Lancaster, Jean Simmons, and Dean Jagger in Elmer Gantry (1960)

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Burt Lancaster and Jean Simmons in Elmer Gantry (1960)

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Burt Lancaster and Jean Simmons in Elmer Gantry (1960)

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Jean Simmons in Elmer Gantry (1960)

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Joan Fontaine, Sandra Dee, Piper Laurie, and Jean Simmons in Land ohne Männer (1957)

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Joan Fontaine, Sandra Dee, Piper Laurie, and Jean Simmons in Land ohne Männer (1957)

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Marlon Brando and Jean Simmons in Desirée (1954)

Simmons had two daughters: Kate Brooks (by Richard Brooks) and Tracy Granger (by Stewart Granger). Both daughters survived their mother, along with a grandson, Ty Saville..

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Marlon Brando and Jean Simmons in Desirée (1954)

Turned down the role of Jean Pargetter on the British television series As Time Goes By (1992), which went to Judi Dench.

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Marlon Brando and Jean Simmons in Desirée (1954)

Becoming depressed at the lack of quality parts being offered her, Jean became addicted to alcohol. In 1986, she sought professional treatment.

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Marlon Brando and Jean Simmons in Desirée (1954)

She was awarded the OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) in the 2003 Queen's New Year Honours List for her services to drama.

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Marlon Brando and Jean Simmons in Desirée (1954)

In America from the early 1950s, Jean found out that RKO head Howard Hughes had purchased the remaining six months of her Rank Studio contract. When Hughes claimed that an oral agreement with Rank precluded her from being loaned out to any other studio, she sued RKO. The legal battle raged for over a year. When the suit was finally settled, RKO had a three-year contract for Jean's services, but was obligated to pay her $250,000 in addition to her legal fees. Furthermore, she won the right to work on loan to other studios at a substantial salary.

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Marlon Brando, Jean Simmons, and Cameron Mitchell in Desirée (1954)

In 1958, she accepted the Oscar for Best Actor in a Leading Role on behalf of Alec Guinness, who was not present at the awards ceremony.

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Marlon Brando and Jean Simmons in Schwere Jungen, leichte Mädchen (1955)

Even before her American debut, she was revered and beloved by both the British critics and filmgoers. By the end of 1950, she was the #4 box office attraction, American or British, in British cinema.

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Marlon Brando and Jean Simmons in Schwere Jungen, leichte Mädchen (1955)

In the late 1970s, she and daughter Kate Brooks lived in the Litchfield County town of New Milford, Connecticut. They later returned to their longtime California home in Santa Monica.

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Marlon Brando, Jean Simmons, and Regis Toomey in Schwere Jungen, etc.

As of 2013, she is one of six women who has received a Best Actress Oscar nomination for a performance directed by her spouse, namely for The Happy Ending (1969) directed by Richard Brooks. The other five are Elisabeth Bergner for Escape Me Never (1935) (directed by Paul Czinner), Joanne Woodward for Rachel, Rachel (1968) (directed by Paul Newman), Gena Rowlands for A Woman Under the Influence (1974) and Gloria (1980) (both directed by John Cassavetes), Julie Andrews for Victor Victoria (1982) (directed by Blake Edwards), and Frances McDormand for Fargo (1996) (directed by Joel Coen). Jules Dassin also directed his future wife Melina Mercouri in a Best Actress Oscar nominated performance (Never on Sunday (1960)), but they were not married yet at the time of the nomination.

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Marlon Brando and Jean Simmons in Schwere Jungen, leichte Mädchen (1955)

In Italy, most of her films were dubbed by Fiorella Betti. She was occasionally dubbed by Dhia Cristiani during the mid-1950s, most notably in The Robe (1953). Other actresses like Miranda Bonansea, Rosetta Calavetta and Rina Morelli also lent their voice to Simmons at some point. From the 1960s onwards, Maria Pia Di Meo became her official Italian voice.

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Marlon Brando and Jean Simmons in Schwere Jungen, leichte Mädchen (1955)

She was made a Fellow of the British Film Institute in recognition of her outstanding contribution to film culture.

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Marlon Brando and Jean Simmons in Schwere Jungen, leichte Mädchen (1955)

Was William Wyler's first choice for the role of Princess Ann in Roman Holiday (1953), but Howard Hughes, who owned her contract, would not loan her out to Paramount to do the film.

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Marlon Brando and Jean Simmons in Schwere Jungen, leichte Mädchen (1955)

Her mother was Winifred Aida Loveland. Her father, Charles Simmons, won a bronze medal in the Olympics for Great Britain in artistic gymnastics and died of an ulcer when Jean was age 16.

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Marlon Brando and Jean Simmons in Schwere Jungen, leichte Mädchen (1955)

Became a United States citizen in 1956.

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Marlon Brando and Jean Simmons in Schwere Jungen, leichte Mädchen (1955)

Director Richard Brooks claimed that he wrote The Happy Ending (1969), the filmed story of an alcoholic wife (played by Simmons) as a way to tell his wife that she herself had a problem. The marriage eventually broke up due to Simmons' drinking and Brooks' workaholic tendencies.

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Marlon Brando and Jean Simmons in Schwere Jungen, leichte Mädchen (1955)

She and Marlon Brando were originally supposed to lip-sync their songs in the musical film Guys and Dolls (1955). Samuel Goldwyn heard them during rehearsal and decided the untrained stars should do their own singing for authenticity.

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Marlon Brando and Jean Simmons in Schwere Jungen, leichte Mädchen (1955)

Her Hamlet (1948) co-star Laurence Olivier urged the young actress to perfect her craft on the stage; instead, she decided to follow her future husband Stewart Granger to Hollywood.

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Marlon Brando and Jean Simmons in Schwere Jungen, leichte Mädchen (1955)

She is survived by her daughters, Tracy Granger and Kate Brooks, and one grandson, Ty Saville.

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Jean Simmons and Edmund Purdom in Sinuhe der Ägypter (1954)

According to Richard Burton's biography "And God Created Burton", Simmons had an affair with the actor when they were filming The Robe (1953) together.

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Jean Simmons and Edmund Purdom in Sinuhe der Ägypter (1954)

She was the only guest star on the television series Murder, She Wrote (1984) to receive an Emmy Award nomination (1989).

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Jean Simmons, Peter Ustinov, Edmund Purdom, etc.

Gave birth to her 1st child at age 27, a daughter Tracy Stewart Granger, aka Tracy Granger, on September 10, 1956. Child's father is her 1st ex-husband, Stewart Granger.

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Jean Simmons, Peter Ustinov, and Edmund Purdom in Sinuhe der Ägypter (1954)

Is one of 20 actresses who did not receive an Oscar nomination for their Best Actress in a Comedy/Musical Golden Globe-winning performance; hers being for Guys and Dolls (1955). The others, in chronological order, are: June Allyson for Too Young to Kiss (1951), Ethel Merman for Call Me Madam (1953), Taina Elg and Kay Kendall for Les Girls (1957), Marilyn Monroe for Some Like It Hot (1959), Rosalind Russell for A Majority of One (1961) and Gypsy (1962), Patty Duke for Me, Natalie (1969), Twiggy for The Boy Friend (1971), Raquel Welch for The Three Musketeers (1973), Barbra Streisand for A Star Is Born (1976), Bernadette Peters for Pennies from Heaven (1981), Kathleen Turner for Romancing the Stone (1984) and Prizzi's Honor (1985), Miranda Richardson for Enchanted April (1991), Jamie Lee Curtis for True Lies (1994), Nicole Kidman for To Die For (1995), Madonna for Evita (1996), Renée Zellweger for Nurse Betty (2000), Sally Hawkins for Happy-Go-Lucky (2008), and Amy Adams for Big Eyes (2014).

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Jean Simmons, Peter Ustinov, and Edmund Purdom in Sinuhe der Ägypter (1954)

She has two roles in common with Helena Bonham Carter: (1) Simmons played Ophelia in Hamlet (1948) while Bonham Carter played her in Hamlet (1990) and (2) Simmons played Miss Havisham in Great Expectations (1989) while Bonham Carter played her in Great Expectations (2012). Simmons actually starred in two adaptations of Great Expectations: Great Expectations (1946) and Great Expectations (1989). She played Estella in the former and Miss Havisham in the latter.

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Jean Simmons and Edmund Purdom in Sinuhe der Ägypter (1954)

Received her first on-screen kiss from Tony Wager in Great Expectations (1946).

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Jean Simmons in Sinuhe der Ägypter (1954)

Quit smoking while filming Shadows in the Sun (2009).

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Jean Simmons and Edmund Purdom in Sinuhe der Ägypter (1954)

Was just 11 years younger than Teresa Wright, who played her mother in The Actress (1953) and The Happy Ending (1969).

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Jean Simmons, Peter Ustinov, and Edmund Purdom in Sinuhe der Ägypter (1954)

Appears in four Oscar Best Picture nominees: Great Expectations (1946), Hamlet (1948), The Robe (1953) and Elmer Gantry (1960). Hamlet won Best Picture in 1948.

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