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Ona Munson

ONA MUNSON (American actress, b. 1903, d. 1955) Ona Munson was an improbable choice to play the whiskey-voiced prostitute with a heart of gold, Belle Watling, in "Gone With the Wind." Born Ona Wolcott in Portland, Oregon in 1903, she first came to fame on Broadway as the singing and dancing ingenue in the original production of "No, No, Nanette." She had a very successful stage and radio career in the 1930’s in New York. She introduced the song "You're the Cream In My Coffee," to New York audiences. She was the antithesis of the voluptuous Belle: tall, freckled, and of slight build. But her skills as an actress electrified her screen test: it was all in the voice. She spoke deep and throaty in her test, and her voice conveyed sexiness and worldliness. The needed look for Belle could be created in the wardrobe and makeup departments. Early on, Selznick had announced Mae West was to play Belle, but this was of course a publicity stunt. Tallulah Bankhead refused the role as too small. Ona Munson’s career was stalemated by the acclaim of GWTW. She was typecast in similar roles, and in 1955, plagued by ill health, she committed suicide with an overdose of barbiturates in her apartment in New York.


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She was typecast in similar roles, and in 1955, plagued by ill health, she committed suicide with an overdose of barbiturates in her apartment in New York. She contiued to accept occasional film roles until her death in Athens in 1973. Ona Munson’s career was stalemated by the acclaim of GWTW. She formed the Royal Theater of Athens with Alexis Minotis, her principal director and her husband since 1940. Tallulah Bankhead refused the role as too small. Returning to Greece in 1950, Paxinou resumed her stage career. Early on, Selznick had announced Mae West was to play Belle, but this was of course a publicity stunt. She continued appearing in Hollywood films until 1949.

The needed look for Belle could be created in the wardrobe and makeup departments. She was selected to play Pilar in the 1943 film of For Whom the Bell Tolls, winning a Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress and a Golden Globe. She spoke deep and throaty in her test, and her voice conveyed sexiness and worldliness. When World War II broke out she was performing in London and unable to return to Greece she emigrated to the US. But her skills as an actress electrified her screen test: it was all in the voice. Paxinou distinguished herself on the stage. She was the antithesis of the voluptuous Belle: tall, freckled, and of slight build. Trained as an opera singer but changed career and joined the Greek Royal Theater in 1929.

She introduced the song "You're the Cream In My Coffee," to New York audiences. Born Katina Constantopoulos in Pireas. 1955) Ona Munson was an improbable choice to play the whiskey-voiced prostitute with a heart of gold, Belle Watling, in "Gone With the Wind." Born Ona Wolcott in Portland, Oregon in 1903, she first came to fame on Broadway as the singing and dancing ingenue in the original production of "No, No, Nanette." She had a very successful stage and radio career in the 1930’s in New York. Katina Paxinou (December 17, 1900 - February 22, 1973) was a Greek film and theatre actress. 1903, d. Un Été Sauvage (1970). ONA MUNSON (American actress, b. Tante Zita (1968),.

Rocco e i Suoi Fratelli (1960),. Arkadin (1955),. Mr. Prince of Foxes (1949),.

Uncle Silas (1947),. Mourning Becomes Electra (1947),. The Confidential Agent (1945),. Hostages (1943),.

For Whom the Bell Tolls (1943),.

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