Nostalgic Photos You Were Never Meant To See
By | February 22, 2023
Olivia Newton-John looking groovy in the 1970s.
When we see celebrities onscreen or hear their music it’s like we know them, but really, fans are just getting a piece of someone whenever they experience their work. These photos show the interior lives and moments when stars weren’t trying to be on.
Whether it’s a picture of a young Tom Cruise about to get dumped, or Princess Diana dancing at the White House, the stories behind these photos speak to fact that celebrities are never who we think they are. No matter which star of the groovy era you like, there’s something on here that’s going to blow your mind. Read on.
In the 1970s, Olivia Newton John was the poster girl for being good. With her classically attractive looks and blonde hair, she was a target for critics who wanted to find something to dislike about her specific brand of ear candy. When Rolling Stone interviewed her in 1978 they read her a quote from Randy Newman where he said, “For the life of me, I can’t understand the vast appeal of a song like ‘I Honestly Love You.’ I mean, it’s boring, even.”
After hearing the quote Newton-John didn’t bat an eye before responding:
Well, obviously if I thought there was some truth in that, it would upset me,” she said. “I actually believe ‘I Honestly Love You’ is a great song. Whether he likes the way I sing it or not, that’s his personal taste.
It annoys me when people think [that] because it’s commercial, it’s bad. It’s completely opposite: if it’s commercial, people like it, and that’s what it’s all supposed to be about.” At the same time, she is not a pop puppet or a showroom dummy. “I wouldn’t sing anything I hated. I have to like it, or I wouldn’t sing it.
Ginger On Gilligan's Island
The age old question, who would you rather be stuck on Gilligan’s Island with, Ginger or Mary Ann? At the moment we’re leaning more towards Ginger. Ginger was a far out character who was the life of the party on the island, especially when the professor got his coconut radio going. She was the actress of the group, which was easy for Louise to do because she’d been spending her time on Broadway before she was hired for the show.
In fact, her Broadway credentials garnered her special placement in the credits. She was listed last in the season one credits of the series, which was apparently a big deal for Louise.
Ann-Margret back in the day, she didn't let a nasty motorcycle accident stop her
The Swedish born, American temptress is most known for appearing in Viva Las Vegas with Elvis and even an episode of The Flintstones as Ann-Margrock, but her real passion is tearing up the asphalt on her motorcycle. She’s been riding motorcycles since the ‘60s when she first appeared on a motorcycle on screen in The Swinger, but she didn’t just ride in film.
Margret continued riding Triumphs and Harleys, she was even asked to leave her bike home while she was touring. As an experienced rider she’s had her fair share of falls. In 2000 she wound up in a motorcycle accident and suffered three broken ribs and a fractured left shoulder.
Jack Nicholson was terrified of running into Michelle Phillips' ex-boyfriend
Before Jack Nicholson was the most recognizable Lakers fan in the world, he was just a character actor doing his best to stay afloat in Los Angeles. Prior to 1969 he mostly appeared in B-movies by Roger Corman, but that year he took a supporting role in Easy Rider that quickly earned him the role that defined his career in Five Easy Pieces.
At the time he was seeing Michelle Phillips of the Mama’s and the Papas, and even though the two got on like gangbusters he was so afraid of her ex, Dennis Hopper, that he slept with a hammer under his pillow. It seems that even though the two men worked together on Easy Rider they weren’t good enough friends to date the same person.
Andre the Giant and Hulk Hogan smiling (out of the wrestling ring) in the 1980s.
The in ring rivalry between André the Giant and Hulk Hogan captivated audiences throughout the ‘80s. From 1980 to 1983 the two wrestled more than 20 times for the WWF and NJPW (New Japan Pro Wrestling), their feud reignited for Wrestlemania III in 1987. The entire time the two guys were palling around and making a ton of money along the way. However, Hogan was often worried that if he gave too many notes on the matches that he Andre would smush him in the ring. He explained:
I’d been on Andre’s bad side before, and I did not want Andre to know I wrote a bunch of notes about the match because that went against everything Andre believed in. That went against our art form. I wrote it down to give Vince an idea of what we’d do; we argue, he throws a punch, I block it, hit him with two, go for the slam, then he slams me once, slams me twice, stands on my back, and I’m thinking, ‘Holy sh*t, he’s doing exactly what I wrote down.’ It really caught me off-guard…
I never talk about the match like a lot of these guys do, because sometimes when they talk about the match, it doesn’t work but they keep doing what they talked about. I said to Vince, ‘I wrote this down simply to give you a base if you need to talk with Andre about anything. But if you show him what I wrote down, I’m dead.’ If Vince had showed Andre that I wrote the match out, he was going to have a red-and-yellow blood spot in the middle of the ring.
The one and only Elvis Aaron Presley.
Everyone has a favorite Elvis song, but do you have a favorite Elvis karate move? The King started studying karate in 1958 and even though he took his studies very seriously he was always Elvis when he was in the dojo. Master Kang Rhee of Memphis, who trained the King, said that Elvis often wore boots while he practiced, and that he insisted on using practicing with live weapons. He wrote:
When Elvis...practice[d] self-defense demonstrations, he insisted on using real firearms. Most everyone used wooden guns, but not Elvis.
In his book, Elvis’ Karate Legacy, he wrote that Elvis had a crisp technical ability and that the practitioners in Memphis were impressed with the amount of time he put into the art.
People waiting in line for the premiere of "Star Wars" in 1977.
Today it seems like a forgone conclusion that a new Star Wars movie will make the GDP of a small country over the course of its opening weekend, but in 1977 20th Century Fox had trouble getting the movie in theaters let alone worrying about how much money the movie would make. Before its release the studio behind Star Wars (Fox) had to strong arm theaters into running the picture. Essentially, if a theater wanted to show Other Side of Midnight they had to show Star Wars.
Even though theaters weren’t stoked about showing a kiddie movie like Star Wars, they were rewarded for their bravery when the movie took off like the Millennium Falcon into light speed. Chuck Viane, the former head of distribution at Disney, was working in Chicago at the time and he says that the theater’s decision to show Star Wars turned their business around:
Back then, movies played in exclusive runs in select cities. I bid for Star Wars and won it exclusively for the St. Park, a struggling theater we had just bought in Minneapolis. I don't recall whether it was the first week or weekend, but the St. Park grossed $250,000, more than it had made in the prior three months.
"Whoever controls the media, controls the mind." -Jim Morrison, 1967
Jim Morrison was only 23-years-old when The Doors played “Light My Fire” on the Ed Sullivan show. Even though they offended Sullivan and made sure they never played his show again by refusing to change the lyrics of their song, the band catapulted themselves to super stardom. Morrison was troubled by the song’s success, but the track afforded him an excuse to stay out and carouse every night.
Morrison didn’t handle stardom well. He tripped on LSD and and drank until he blacked out. Supposedly he was such a bad drinker that Janis Joplin got annoyed with him at a party and smashed a bottle of Southern Comfort over his head. As often as he misbehaved, Morrison loved to perform. He felt it was duty to take the audience on a trip with him. He told Albert Goldman from Life Magazine:
We’re really politicians. You could call us erotic politicians… a Doors concert is really a public meeting called by us for a special kind of dramatic discussion and entertainment. [The audience] go home and interact with their reality, then I get it all back by interacting with that reality.
Did someone say pink? This very groovy 1973 Volvo ad must have
For some strange reason, maybe a dare, the folks at Volvo decided to follow up the the P1800 coupe, a two-door coup made famous in Cold War era spy show The Saint, with a squat, weird little station-wagon type car. There’s nothing wrong with the 1800ES. If you had a small family that needed to be driven around in the early ‘70s this was the most stylish car you could do it in.
However, you probably only saw these bad boys in these ads because Volvo didn’t make very many of them. There were less than 8,100 manufactured and put on sale in Europe and North America. The car was phased out in 1973 and it was rarely seen on the road after that.
A young Don Rickles in his Navy whites. He enlisted in the United States Navy after graduating from high school and served during World War II.
While we tend to think of Don Rickles as one of the greatest entertainers of his life time, and a comedian who always had a zing at the ready, Rickles also served in the Navy during World War II. He enlisted as a Seaman First Class and served from 1944 - 1946 on the USS Cyrene in the Philippines.
During that time Mr. Warmth definitely kept his fellow troops entertained, but he notes that he wasn’t exactly excited to go away to the service. Rickles said:
I was in World War II; I cried when they took me in the Navy. That's the last time I cried.
Jimi Hendrix enlisted in the Army in 1961 and was assigned to the 101st Airborne Division where he was stationed at Fort Campbell in Kentucky.
Before he was drenched in purple haze, Jimi Hendrix was wearing all green while briefly serving in the Army. After running afoul of the law for bopping around in stolen cars Hendrix was given the option of going to jail or enrolling in the Army, he chose the latter. After spending a year with the 101st Airborne Division Hendrix was caught pleasuring himself by his superiors and was discharged.
It’s not clear if Hendrix was trying to get caught so he’d be kicked out, or if his superiors were strictly against self pleasure, but whatever the case on May 31 he was set free to unleash his raw guitar power on the world.
Marilyn Monroe on the balcony of the Ambassador Hotel in New York. (1955)
In 1955, Marilyn Monroe was on the top of the world. She’d just appeared in The Seven Year Itch, she was out of her rocky marriage with Joe DiMaggio and rather than go out and party or get up to trouble she decided to study her craft. At the time she was studying under Lee Strasberg at the Actor’s Studio and she took her studies very seriously.
Strasberg didn’t see Monroe as another blonde actor. In actuality he felt that her sensitivity helped her find something real in her roles that other actors couldn’t pinpoint. She studied with Strasberg privately for three years before she joined regular classes. Strasberg went onto say that Monroe and Marlon Brando were two of the greatest actors he ever taught.
Leon Russell and a beardless Willie Nelson, 1979.
After restarting his career in Texas, Willie Nelson started touring non-stop with his band the Rolling Smoke Revue. According to Rolling Stone, Nelson and his crew all traveled under pseudonyms - Nelson was known as “Fast Eddie,” and his manager was “Poodie,” and his bodyguard was “Snake.” Even though Willie is most often thought of as a bearded, long hair stoner, he admitted in the late ‘70s that he shaved in the summers because the weather was too darn hot.
Russell and Nelson toured together and ended up recording the album “One for the Road” in 1979 that featured classics like “I Saw The Light” and “Don’t Fence Me In.” It's a snapshot of life on tour with these two country dynamos.
Clint Eastwood reading to Manis the orangutan on the set of "Every Which Way But Loose" (1978)
What a strange career Clint Eastwood has had. After playing a cowboy for decades he reinvented himself as a tough guy who took out bad guys and tossed off one-liners, and then he filmed a movie with an orangutang - but that almost didn’t happen. Burt Reynolds was set to star in the film, which totally makes sense, but when he changed his mind about the role Eastwood took it on and added new depth to his career. He discussed how no one expected him to make his bare knuckle boxing monkey movie:
It was not quite the thing people were expecting. No one was particularly excited about it. It had nothing to do with Dirty Harry. I saw it as some camp deal. There was something about the screenplay that was unusual. I mean, it was about this fringe society where there was bare-knuckle fighting… It turned out to be this PG kind of movie one that could reach down to an audience I hadn't been appealing to with the tougher pictures.
'Aunt Esther' purse ad from the 1970s
Have you ever needed to just smack someone upside the head? Are you constantly confronted with suckers and turkeys who won’t get out of your way? Or are you getting mugged all the time? If so you need to pick up an Aunt Esther purse that has enough space to hold your personal belongings and enough extra leather to knock out anyone who gets in your face.
Aunt Esther was most well known for telling it like it is on Sanford and Son and for having a contentious relationship with Fred. It’s not clear how many of these purses were sold or how many concussions came from these purses, but there hopefully the actress LaWanda Page got some kind of kickback.
Tanya Tucker standing in the dugout during a Kenny Rogers celebrity softball game in 1977.
Maybe Tanya Tucker doesn’t immediately come to mind when you think of outlaw country, but when someone was slingin’ country hits before they could drive they’re more than qualified to be counted among folks like Willie and Waylon. Taken before she was 20 years old, this photo definitely shows Tucker leaning into the outlaw lifestyle.
Not only is she rocking a cold beer and throwing some serious shade, but she looks so cool with her Farrah Fawcett hair and the knee-high socks. Who cares how she was on the field as long as she looked cool while she was out there?
High wasted hip hugging bell bottoms of the '70s.
Bell bottoms got started in the Navy, but by the 1970s these pants were no longer just for guys in the military. Made from denim and flared at the calf, these jeans were somehow both form fitting and loose at the calf. They may have been far out and weird in the ‘60s, but by the next century they were just a way of life.
While bell bottoms were being turned out in every style and fabric imaginable, denim bell bottoms were the coolest. Figuratively speaking that is, these denim babies definitely didn’t breathe. But hey, they looked great.
Heather Locklear and Tom Cruise dated each other for six months in 1982.
In 1982 Tom Cruise wasn’t yet the biggest star in the world, he’d only appeared in a couple of movies at the time, but he was still a major babe. After meeting Locklear at an audition the two went out for a few months, but according to the Melrose Place actress Cruise was super embarrassing to hang out with. She said:
You know in 'Risky Business' where he does that dance in his underwear and does the splits? We were dancing at a club and he went into that! He starting doing the splits… You just kind of stand there and don't know what to do. Do you dance around him? So, I was like, 'I'll just sit down…’
John Ritter in a groovy shirt and flashing his pearly whites, 1970s.
It was always nice to watch John Ritter on television; no matter what he was doing there was always a mischievous smile on his face that let the audience know that he was having fun in front of the camera. Even though he was just on Three’s Company he didn’t act like he was unhappy to be on a sitcom. Instead, he actually knew how good he had it. Ritter once joked:
Most people don't know that I am an accomplished dramatic actor... But I've performed in several Shakespeare productions including Hamlet, except in this version, Hamlet lives in an apartment with two women, and has to pretend he's gay so that the landlord won't evict him.
Marilyn Monroe sitting in the shade on the set of the film "Some Like It Hot" (1959)
Some Like It Hot is one of those movies that couldn’t be made today. Two jazz musicians on the run from the mob posing as women - and one of the musicians uses his misbegotten friendship with blonde bombshell Marilyn Monroe to sleep with her. Yeah have fun trying to get that into the theaters in the 21st century. Despite its less than PC themes the movie is one of the funniest comedies of all time.
Jack Lemmon is on fire in the movie, and Marilyn Monroe has never been more fascinating to watch on screen. According to co-star Tony Curtis, he and Monroe had a fling while on set. Although he doesn’t think she was all that into him. He wrote:
When I was in bed with Marilyn, I was never sure, before, during or after, where her mind was. She was an actress. She could play a part. She could give the part what she thought a man wanted. I never asked for more. What I experienced with her was unforgettable.
Lee Van Cleef and Clint Eastwood on the set of "For a Few Dollars More, " Van Cleef's character was almost played by Charles Bronson
While we think of Clint Eastwood’s spaghetti western trilogy as the pinnacle of the western genre, it was almost just a one and done thing. Eastwood filmed A Fistful of Dollars in Italy in order to get out of TV, but the whole thing was a gamble, he didn’t know what was going to happen. Initially the producers wanted Charles Bronson (and about 20 other actors) for the part, but Eastwood took it on.
Producers asked him to film a sequel almost immediately after they wrapped production but he balked because he didn’t know how the film would be received. When he saw a rough cut of the Italian language version of the film he called director Sergio Leone and said he was in. Once again, Leone reached out to Bronson to appear in the sequel but the actor turned it down. The director called up Lee Van Cleef and the history was made.
Maxwell Smart (Don Adams) and Agent 99 (Barbara Feldon) with their shoe phones on "Get Smart"
There was a glut of super spy content in the 1960s, and while you could go to a myriad of places for taut action and suspense, Get Smart was the spy show that you could throw on with your family and crack up for 30 minutes. According to executive producer Leonard B. Stern, star Don Adams loved to shoot action sequences, it’s just that they were always edited out of the final product. He explained:
I personally tried to avoid any display of violence especially where it concerned Don [Adams]. He loved to be in action sequences and very often we filmed it, but edited out, so he was gratified he did it and by the time it was put together and on the air he had forgotten about it. I didn’t want him to be exploiting an aggressive attitude and I think it does a disservice to comedy if you sense the reality. You gotta believe the heavies are real and can be dangerous but you don’t have to constantly display it.
If you've seen one 40 foot tall purple gorilla you've seen them all. Grape Ape appeared on the Saturday morning cartoon "The Great Grape Ape Show " in 1975.
When it comes to weird cartoon characters Hanna-Barbera really runs the game. Not only do they have a team of groovy teens that solve mysteries with a dog, but they threw a 40 foot purple ape on screen on Saturday mornings and made it work. The series followed Grape Ape while he hung out with his normal sized dog buddy Beegle Beagle.
Beegle drove a small yellow van around while Grape Ape sat on top and somehow didn’t crush his little buddy. The series only ran for one season, but Grape Ape continued to appear on shows like the Tom and Jerry/Grape Ape Show and Scooby's All-Star Laff-A-Lympics / Scooby's All-Stars. No matter where you saw Grape Ape you have to admit that he did a grape job.
The Monkees with their award for outstanding comedy at the 1967 Emmys.
Even if they were regarded as a passing fad at the time, The Monkees have proved that they’re the real deal and that they staying power. They started their reign at the 1967 Emmys when they took home a couple of those gold boys, not for acting or music, but for direction and one for “outstanding comedy.” Critics may not have understood what The Monkees were doing at the time, but the series had some of the most surreal comedy this side of the pond. Creator Bob Rafelson explained his idea to the Hollywood Reporter:
I wanted the show to be radical for the time with super-fast editing, cuts and balloons with dialogue coming out of people's mouths. From my point of view, we were taking what Truffaut and Godard were doing and applying that to TV. But it had to be madcap like my original inspiration, the Marx Brothers.
Natalie Wood poses for the camera at an amusement park during her brief retirement in the 1970s
After her career highs as a young woman in the 1940s, ‘50s, and ‘60s Natalie Wood took a much deserved break in the ‘70s. She rekindled her relationship with Robert Wagner and the two had a child in 1974. Her sister, Lana, says that this period of Natalie’s life was the most relaxed she’d ever seen her. She wrote about this period in her memoir about Natalie:
Her marriage was considered to be one of the best in Hollywood, and there is no question that she was a devoted, loving—even adoring—mother and stepmother. She and R. J. had begun with love and built from there. They had overcome each other's problems and had reached an accommodation with time and the changes time brings. As with anybody else who has settled into making a long marriage work, they were far more determined than most people to make it work.
Princess Diana dances with an uncomfortable Clint Eastwood at the White House in 1985.
What could these two be talking about? The don’t have much in common aside from the fact that they’re both in the White House. According to People Magazine, Nancy Reagan specially invited Tom Selleck, Neil Diamond, Clint Eastwood and John Travolta specifically so they would dance with the princess. John Travolta said that he was told to ask Diana to dance when the band kicked into the Saturday Night Fever hit “You Should Be Dancing.”
When it came to Eastwood, the two mostly made conversation while they danced. According to Tom Selleck, Clint Eastwood was uncomfortable dancing with the princess and he told her that at 24 she was too old for him. However, Eastwood later said of the dance, “She made my day.”
Who remembers this ad from the 1970s? Columbia Records introduced The Columbia House brand in the early 1970s. Did you buy them too?
Ah, Columbia House Records, that great scheme that kept young people in 8-tracks, cassettes, and even CDs well into the 2000s. In the ‘70s Columbia house offered more than a dozen albums for dollar, which seems like a crazy deal, and while they didn’t make any money off the single dollar, they made bank from something called “negative billing.”
The whole thing with negative billing is that once you sign up for Columbia House (or another service that uses this option) they keep sending you stuff and charging you for it until you cancel your membership. Smart subscribers knew how to cancel their subscription the moment they had that sweet, sweet Boston LP in their hands. Or, they knew how to subscribe under a different name. Not that we’d know anything about that.
Ozzy, Sharon, Aimee, Jack and Kelly Osbourne in a sweet family photo, 1986.
By 1986, Ozzy had fully cemented his legacy as the finest madman of rock n’ roll. He bit the head off a dove and a bat, he might have had rabies, and he was four years removed from peeing on the Alamo. Life was good. At the time he was doing his best to live a semi-clean life. He was working out, taking vitamins, and even visiting a chiropractor. However, while speaking with Spin in ’86 he admitted that the overhaul in his life affected the kind of songs he sang:
I suddenly realized that when I was a drug addict, I used to write things like ‘flying high again,’ ‘snowblind,’ all this ****. And the other night, I thought, ‘F*ckin’ ‘ell, I sing one song for it and then straight after I sing one song against it.’ But the thing is, that’s OK. Because that was where I was when I wrote that, so why shouldn’t I do it? It’s part of my life. It’s part of what I am and what I will be. I might start singing ******* religious songs. I don’t think so, but if I choose to, why not?
Punk Rock blondie Debbie Harry back in the '70s.
New York City in the 1970s was full of characters. Glammed out guitar players and weirdo poets and painters all walked the streets looking for inspiration, but Debby Harry was the one performer who was always a rock star. As the singer for Blondie she captivated audiences with her stark good lucks and siren call of a voice, but the songwriting was there too. When the band broke big in 1978 with “Parallel Lines” it’s as if the group was just waiting for it to happen, like it was an inevitability. Even though they’re known for tracks like “Dreaming” and “Heart of Glass,” Harry describes Blondie’s early shows as chaotic at best. She told Interview Magazine:
We had a date at CB’s before we left, as our kick-off before we went on this amazing tour. The fire department came and then the bomb squad came. [Moody laughs] It was real chaotic. It was wonderful. I mean, the place was overcrowded, so they shut us down twice but we managed to keep on playing.
Robert Fuller, Julie London and Bobby Troup in "Emergency!"
Before there was Cops, and definitely before Rescue 911 there was Emergency! One of the first TV shows that took a realistic look at what it takes for paramedics, police, and firefighters to save lives on an every day basis. This tense series jumpstarted the “municipal services” genre of television that we still have today, and after six seasons the show went on to make six made for TV movies.
Weirdly enough, the series had a Saturday morning cartoon spin off called Emergency +4, which was about a group of kids who drove around in an ambulance with their pet to assist the paramedics Gage and DeSoto from the main show. Surprisingly this series ran for two seasons. As rough as that cartoon sounds, at least the show it was spun off from is still an exciting watch.
Sharon Stone showing some leg in 1983.
Believe it or not, but there was brief period in time when Sharon Stone wasn’t one of the most sought after actresses on the planet. In the early ‘80s she mostly worked in television with appearances on Remington Steele, The New Mike Hammer and Magnum, P.I. She played a lot of damsels in distress and femme fatales. How did she go from being a bit player to starring in huge movies? She used her brain. Stone told the Independent:
I decided because I was a very bookworm person that I had to use my intelligence of how to be sexy. So I was very good friends with the woman who was photo-editor of the magazine and she was always saying that Hugh Hefner wanted me to be in[it]. I thought, ‘you know what, this would be an intelligent step for me because if I tell people that I’m sexy, they’ll think I’m sexy’. So I showed her some black and white pictures that Man Ray had taken of his wife and said, ‘something like this’. And I got Basic Instinct, like five minutes later.
Soundgarden's singer/rhythm guitarist Chris Cornell, 1989.
When Chris Cornell passed away in 2017 it was like a punch in the gut to music fans everywhere. His soulful voice and twisting lyrics were such a respite to fans it’s terrible that he’s gone. In 1989 Soundgarden was just exploding onto the music scene, and Spin believed they were about to hit the big time if they could get over being compared to Led Zeppelin. As annoying as it can be to hear the same comparison over and over again, Cornell had a sense of humor about it. He told Spin:
When we first got stuck with that Led Zep tag three years ago, I thought it was O.K. Back then, everyone in Seattle was into the Smiths and the Cure and Led Zeppelin was very ‘70s, very uncool. We were outcasts from the goofy art rock scene, which was fine by me. I just figured, it could be worse, they could’ve compared me to Jim Morrison.
A young Steven Seagal a 7th-dan black belt in aikido.
Wow, who knew Steven Seagal had such great hair? Before he was an action star or a lawman, Seagal was a sought after martial artist who studied and taught akido in North Hollywood and West Hollywood, California. He grew up in Lansing, Michigan, but after his family moved to Fullerton, California when he was five-years-old he blossomed. His mother told People that as soon as Seagal was old enough all he did was listen to ear splitting rock music and train at a local dojo.
When Seagal was old enough he traveled to Japan to further his studies, although the year this actually happened is murky. He went back and forth from Los Angeles to Japan a few times and even opened a dojo in Osaka with his then wife and her family. Seagal says that at this time he was recruited by the CIA for special training. In 1988 he told the Los Angeles Times:
These guys were my students. They saw my abilities both with martial arts and with the language. You can say that I became an adviser to several CIA agents in the field, and. through my friends in the CIA, met many powerful people and did special works and special favors.
Who knows if the story is true? Even if it’s not it’s a lot of fun.
Burt Reynolds wasn't confident with his acting abilities when he filmed "The Longest Yard" (1974)
To a lot of cinephiles from the groovy era, Burt Reynolds is one of the finest and most fun actors of the day. He had an ease and a charisma around him that let the audience know that everything was going to be alright, and that they were in for a fun ride. Reynolds knew that he was good at setting people at ease, but he didn’t think he was a very good actor.
When it came time to film the more dialog heavy scenes in the film, Reynolds says that he was nervous, so director Robert Aldrich allowed him to do one take as written, and another “schtick take” just in case he came up with some magic. Reynolds says that more than half of his scenes are “schtick takes.”
Clint Eastwood and 'Clyde' (Manis) the orangutan staying busy on the set of “Every Which Way But Loose” (1978)
To paraphrase a wise man, don’t work with children or animals. Clint Eastwood didn’t really have a choice when he signed on to star in the comedy Every Which Way But Loose where he shared to screen with Manis the beer drinking orangutan. The pair make a great comedy duo on screen and it’s likely because their takes are so immediate. This is because if the takes went on too long Manis got bored.
We’ve never been around a bored orangutan, but it doesn’t sound pretty. Whatever he did, it couldn’t have been that bad because Eastwood agreed to come back for the sequel.
Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz outside of Desilu Studios in 1960, the year of their divorce
Founded in 1950, Desilu Studios served as a place for Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz to create shows they wanted to create them while making sure they got a cut of the money they thought they should be making. Even though the two divorced in 1960 the remained partners with the studio for nearly three more years.
In 1962 Ball bought out Arnaz’s stake in the company when he drinking began to get in the way of his business decisions. After Arnaz left Ball helped develop shows like Mission: Impossible and Star Trek. She sold the studio in 1967.
There was no script for "Viva Las Vegas" when Ann-Margret and Elvis got started (1964)
Even though Viva Las Vegas is regarded as one of Elvis’ classic films, it could have gone completely the other way. According to the film’s director, George Sidney, there wasn’t even a story when Elvis and Ann-Margret agreed to appear in the film. Initially the film was meant to take place in the Middle East, but after some brainstorming they decided to move the action to Sin City. He said:
That was one of those cases where we had no script and we had a commitment. Originally it was something about an Arabian or something... But we turned it around and we wrote the script in about eleven days... We changed the whole thing and decided to do it in Las Vegas.
Even Angelina Jolie felt out of place in high school
It’s nice to know that even Angelina Jolie, easily one of the sexiest women alive, made strange clothing choices when she was in high school. Initially she went to school at Beverly Hills High School where she felt uncomfortable around the children of vast wealth that surrounded her. Jolie says that it’s not until she transferred to Moreno High School, an alternative school, that she could finally be herself. She told Parade:
[Moreno High School is] where the bad kids go. I chose it. I was the punk outsider who nobody messed with. I was fearless. At 16, I graduated and moved out.
Eric Burdon, Stu Leathwood, Keith Ellis, Roy Wood, Jimi Hendrix, Noel Redding, Carl Wayne, John Mayall, Steve Winwood, Trevor Burton and Roy Morris hanging out in Zurich, Switzerland. (1968)
Do you think anyone is sober in this picture? Chances are that not a one of them could pass a field sobriety test and that’s okay when you’re a rock star, especially if you’re Jimi Hendrix. The guitarist and his band was in Zurich for a two night stand at the Hallenstadion opening for John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers, The New Animals, Traffic, and more. What a wild sounding show.
Following the concert a riot broke out among the fans as the moved towards the Zurich train station. Police fired rubber bullets and water cannons at the crowd to disperse them, but that was only the beginning - in four weeks the Globus riots occurred, which established a heavy anti-establishment tenor in Zurich.
Stevie Ray Vaughan was still figuring things out in 1979
1979 was a tumultuous year for Stevie Ray Vaughn. He was still putting together the trio that would back him up for the rest of his life, playing around Austin to critical acclaim, and he was arrested for drug possession at the end of the year. That night Vaughn and his band were opening for Muddy Waters, who said that the arrest disheartened him. In a biography of Vaughn, Waters said:
Stevie could perhaps be the greatest guitar player that ever lived, but he won't live to get 40 years old if he doesn't leave that white powder alone.
The arrest followed Vaughn for the rest of his life, and for a while it kept the band from touring overseas.
Tim Conway, Flip Wilson and Burt Reynolds doing a skit on "The Flip Wilson Show" in 1971.
The Flip Wilson Show was one of the most groundbreaking television shows of the groovy era. Not only was it one of the first shows featuring a black person in the title role, but it was a seriously weird and funny show, something that Wilson doesn’t get enough credit for. Wilson had a ton of sketches on the show, but he also had the clout to get a ton of stars to join him on screen, and he never made bones about having to flex his popularity to get what he wanted.
During its first two seasons The Flip Wilson Show was the highest rated show in America according to Nielsen, and it won a series of awards during its four seasons on the air including two Emmy awards.
Be My Baby! The Ronettes back in 1965.
In 1965, The Ronettes were one of the most popular girl groups of the era. The group featured lead singer Veronica Bennett, her sister Estelle, and their cousin Nedra Talley. They were known for their classic hits like “Be My Baby” and “Baby, I Love You.”
The Ronettes had a unique sound, combining elements of doo-wop, girl group pop, and soul. The Ronettes had a classic 1960s look with their bouffant hairstyles and colorful outfits. They significantly influenced the sound of the 1960s, and their songs remain popular today.
A 29 year-old Johnny Cash, 1961
In 1961, Johnny Cash was a 29-year-old rising star in country music. At this time, Johnny began making a name for himself with his unique blend of country, rock, and gospel music. Johnny was born in 1932, and he rose to fame in the late 1950s after signing with the legendary label Sun Records. He released classic albums throughout the 1960s, including At Folsom Prison and At San Quentin.
In 1961, Johnny was at the height of his powers. He was an iconic figure in country music, and his performances were a potent mix of emotion and sincerity. His voice was unmistakable, and his influence can still be felt today.
17 year-old Elizabeth Taylor and her co-star Montgomery Clift chatting on a studio backlot while filming A Place in the Sun -1950
In 1950, Elizabeth Taylor and Montgomery Clift starred in A Place in the Sun classic drama. The movie was a critical and commercial success and a defining moment in both actors’ careers. At the time, Elizabeth was just 17 years old. Still, she already had an impressive resume, having starred in films like National Velvet and Little Women. Montgomery Clift was a rising star, having already starred in films such as Red River and The Heiress.
In this photograph, the two stars were captured chatting on a studio back lot while filming A Place in the Sun. Elizabeth was dressed in a simple white dress. She had her signature dark hair, while Montgomery wore a classic suit and tie.
Tommy Lee Jones back in the 1960s
Tommy Lee Jones is an iconic actor known for his roles in films such as The Fugitive, Men in Black, and No Country for Old Men. But long before he was a Hollywood star, he was a student at Harvard in the 1960s. Tommy was born in 1946 and attended Harvard University in the early 1960s. At this time, he was an aspiring actor studying English and American Literature. He was also an active member of the Harvard Dramatic Club and starred in several plays during his time at Harvard.
Tommy Lee Jones had a very different look in the 1960s. He had a full head of dark hair, and he often wore a suit and tie. His look starkly contrasted with the rugged and weathered look he is known for today.
John and Yoko pedaling around Greenwich Village and stopping for a hot dog, 1972.
In 1972, John Lennon and Yoko Ono took a leisurely bike ride around Greenwich Village in New York. The two were seen pedaling around the city and stopping for a hot dog at a local stand. John and Yoko's leisurely bike ride was a reminder of a simpler time when the two were just a couple living in the city. It was a rare glimpse at the couple's everyday life and a reminder of their love for each other and the city.
Clint Eastwood, 1960
Clint Eastwood is an American actor, filmmaker, and musician with a successful career spanning several decades. He is known for his roles in iconic films such as Dirty Harry, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, Unforgiven, and Gran Torino, among many others.
This photo captures Clint Eastwood in 1960, at the start of his acting career. During the 1960s, Eastwood rose to fame through his role as the "Man with No Name" in Sergio Leone's "Spaghetti Westerns," and later, he played the role of "Dirty Harry" Callahan in a series of films that were big box office hits. These roles established him as a leading man in Hollywood, and he had a successful career both in front of and behind the camera.
Jack Nicholson with daughter Jennifer and then-girlfriend Anjelica Huston in the 70s
In the 1970s, Jack Nicholson was one of the most recognizable figures in Hollywood. He was also a devoted father to his daughter Jennifer, who he had with his then-girlfriend Anjelica Huston. Jack was born in 1937 and quickly became one of Hollywood's most sought-after actors. He appeared in numerous films throughout the 1960s and 70s, including Easy Rider, Chinatown, and The Shining. He also had a long-running relationship with Anjelica Huston, with whom he had a daughter in 1970. Jack was a devoted father to his daughter Jennifer, and the three of them often made public appearances together.
Too cool for the pool- Yul Brynner and Frank Sinatra sitting by Sinatra's pool.
Yul Brynner and Frank Sinatra were two of the most iconic figures of the mid-20th century. In the mid-1960s, the two stars were photographed together sitting by Sinatra's pool in Palm Springs. The photo captured the two stars in a relaxed and jovial mood, and they were an iconic duo of the era.
Yul Brynner was an actor, director, and producer, and he was best known for his role in the classic film The King and I. Frank Sinatra was a legendary singer and actor and a defining figure of the era.
John Travolta sporting the winged hairstyle that was so popular in the 70s.
In the 1970s, John Travolta was one of the most popular actors of the era. He starred in a series of hit films, including Saturday Night Fever and Grease, and he was known for his iconic winged hairstyle.
John's hairstyle was a defining feature of the era and a reminder of the excess and glamour of the 1970s. The hairstyle was long and feathered, with a deep side part and lots of volume. It was a stylish and daring look, and it was a favorite of many young men of the era.
Olivia Newton-John as Sandy in the 1978 movie, Grease (the most successful movie musical of all time).
In 1978, the musical Grease hit theaters and quickly became a classic. The movie starred Olivia Newton-John as Sandy, a good girl who falls for bad boy Danny, played by John Travolta. Olivia Newton-John was already a beloved star before Grease, with a string of hit singles like "Have You Never Been Mellow" and "Physical."
In Grease, her character Sandy transformed from a good girl to a bad girl, and her performance was a film highlight. The movie was a critical and financial success, quickly becoming the most successful musical of all time. Olivia Newton-John's performance as Sandy was a significant part of its success, cementing her status as one of the most beloved stars of the era.
Marilyn Monroe up to bat in 1951.
Marilyn Monroe was a beloved figure of the mid-20th century and was known for her beauty, charm, and unique style. In 1951, she was captured in a memorable photo up at bat with a baseball bat. The photo was taken at the iconic Wrigley Field and is a reminder of Marilyn's playful, fun-loving side. Marilyn arrived at the field to cheer from the crowd and was greeted with a standing ovation. She was in good spirits and said to be enjoying the experience. After the photo was taken, she went on to sign autographs and meet with fans.
Penny Marshall and Carrie Fisher were two of the most beloved celebrities of the late 1970s. The two became fast friends after being introduced by the songwriting duo Paul Simon and Lorne Michaels. The two women had much in common and quickly became close friends. Penny was dating singer Art Garfunkel at the time, while Carrie was married to Paul Simon. Despite the differences in their relationships, the two women bonded over their love of music and comedy, and they quickly became inseparable.
In 1984, Princess Diana attended the Royal Variety Performance, a theatrical event, held to raise funds for the Royal Variety Charity. As she greeted the cast and crew, she spotted the beloved British comedian Rowan Atkinson and recognized him as Mr. Bean. Rowan Atkinson was already a well-known figure in the UK, starring in the popular Blackadder and the Mr. Bean sketch show. Princess Diana was a huge fan of his work and was delighted to meet him in person. Photographers captured the moment, and it quickly became iconic. It was a rare moment of levity on the otherwise formal occasion.
Betty White has been one of the most beloved actresses of the past several decades. But long before she was a special sitcom star, she was already a star in her own right. In the 1950s, Betty was one of the most recognizable faces in Hollywood, appearing in films, television shows, and game shows.
Betty was born in 1922 and began her career in 1939, appearing in several movies. In 1951, she starred in her first television show, the sitcom Life with Elizabeth. The show was a hit with audiences and featured Betty's signature wit and charm.
Who remembers when John Astin played The Riddler on the Batman series in 1966 ❓❔
In 1966, John Astin played the iconic role of The Riddler in the classic Batman television series. The Riddler was a criminal mastermind who would challenge Batman and Robin with his intricate puzzles and riddles.
John Astin was born in 1930 and had been a successful actor for several years before being cast as The Riddler. He was already well-known for his role in the classic cult sitcom The Addams Family, and he was a perfect fit for the role. John Astin's portrayal of The Riddler was a highlight of the series, and his performance was praised by fans and critics alike.
In 1967, teen model Cheryl Tiegs was one of the most recognizable faces of the era. She was a popular fashion model and a spokeswoman for CoverGirl cosmetics.
Cheryl was born in 1947, and began modeling at the age of 15. She quickly became a fashion photographer's favorite and soon appeared in magazines such as Vogue, Harper's Bazaar, and Elle. In 1967, she was featured on the cover of the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue.
In the 1970s, Bruce Lee was an icon of cool. The martial arts actor and philosopher was a beloved figure worldwide, renowned for his skill, charisma, and style. Bruce was born in 1940, and he quickly rose to fame in the early 1970s with his leading roles in films such as Enter the Dragon and Way of the Dragon. His movies were wildly popular and showcased his incredible martial arts skills and charisma.
Bruce was also known for his style, often wearing sleek, stylish suits and sunglasses. He was a trendsetter, and others soon adopted his coolness.
Girls with curls! Nancy and Ann Wilson with Stevie Nicks, sporting matching curly hairdo's in 1979.
In the late 1970s, the musical trio of Nancy, Ann Wilson of the band Heart, and Stevie Nicks of Fleetwood Mac were a force to be reckoned with. The three had unique styles and were often seen sporting matching curly hairdos. The three women were all born in the 1950s and rose to fame in the late 1970s with their respective bands. They had a strong bond, and their style and music reflected their friendship. In 1979, the trio was photographed together, with all three sporting matching curly hairdos. The image was an iconic one, and it captured the spirit of the late 1970s.
Annette Funicello in The Mickey Mouse Club, 1950s.
Annette Funicello was an American actress and singer best known for her role as a Mouseketeer on the popular television series The Mickey Mouse Club in the 1950s.
This photo captures Annette Funicello on set in the 1950s. She wears the classic Mouseketeer outfit, a white t-shirt with the iconic mouse ears, and a red skirt.
The Mickey Mouse Club was a popular American television series from 1955 to 1959. It featured a cast of child performers, known as the Mouseketeers, who sang, danced, and acted in various musical and comedy segments. Annette Funicello was one of the most popular Mouseketeers and was known for her singing and dancing abilities. The show helped to launch her career as a child star, and she went on to have a successful career as an actress and singer.
The pretty girl next door, Susan Dey in the '70s.
Susan Dey is an American actress best known for her role as Laurie Partridge in the 1970s television series The Partridge Family.
Susan Dey played the role of Laurie Partridge, the eldest daughter, in the show, which ran from 1970 to 1974. The show followed the lives of a fictional family band that sang and performed together. Susan Dey's character was known for her wholesome and relatable personality and her singing and dancing abilities. She became a teenage heartthrob and a role model for many young girls during the show's run.