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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. By 1990, she had quietly retired from acting. Ona Munson’s career was stalemated by the acclaim of GWTW. She also guest-starred four times on the classic Rod Serling anthology series "Night Gallery" and was a frequent visitor of "The Love Boat" and "Fantasy Island." After playing an LAPD homicide detective investigating the murder of singer Ciji Dunne (Lisa Hartman) on "Knots Landing" in 1983, Pettet's career slowed down in the mid-1980s. Tallulah Bankhead refused the role as too small. Her feature film appearance became sporadic in the 1970s, but Pettet re-emerged as the star of over a dozen made-for-television movies during that decade, including "The Delphi Bureau" (1972), "The Weekend Nun" (1972), "Pioneer Woman" (1973), "A Cry in the Wilderness" (1974), "The Desperate Miles" (1975), "The Hancocks" (1976), "Sex and the Married Woman" (1977), and "The Return of Frank Cannon" (1980). Early on, Selznick had announced Mae West was to play Belle, but this was of course a publicity stunt. During that time, she married American actor Alex Cord and gave birth to a son in 1968.

The needed look for Belle could be created in the wardrobe and makeup departments. Pettet got her start on Broadway in such plays as "Take Her, She's Mine," "The Chinese Prime Minister" and "Poor Richard" with Alan Bates and Gene Hackman before she was discovered by director Sidney Lumet for his sumptuous 1966 film adaptation of Mary McCarthy's novel, "The Group." The success of that film launched a film career that included roles in "Night of the General" (1967), the James Bond spoof "Casino Royale" (1967), "Blue" (1968) with Terence Stamp, and the Victorian period comedy "The Best House in London" (1969). She spoke deep and throaty in her test, and her voice conveyed sexiness and worldliness. Her mother remarried and settled in Canada, where she was adopted by her stepfather and assumed "Pettet" as her last name. But her skills as an actress electrified her screen test: it was all in the voice. Her father, Harold Nigel Edgerton Salmon, was a British RAF pilot killed in the war. She was the antithesis of the voluptuous Belle: tall, freckled, and of slight build. Talented, blonde Joanna Pettet was born Joanna Jane Salmon on November 16, 1944 in London, England.

She introduced the song "You're the Cream In My Coffee," to New York audiences. For help, see How to Edit a Page and the style and How-to Directory . 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. After the article has been cleaned up, you may remove this message. 1903, d. This article needs cleanup.
This article needs to be edited to conform to a higher standard of article quality. ONA MUNSON (American actress, b.

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