Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Esther Williams, R.I.P.

Howard Keel as Hannibal and Esther Williams as Amytis in JUPITER'S DARLING.

Famous competitive swimmer Esther Williams, who became a movie star in the 1940s and 50s, died last week when I was away on break. Her films had elaborate musical numbers with Esther and cast mates swimming to music. She starred in JUPITER'S DARLING, an unlikely musical about Hannibal which became an enormous financial failure. But most of her films were hits, set in contemporary times, and often included Greek or Roman themes or imagery of Williams swimming in pools like a Greek goddess. She was set to star in ATHENA but was away on maternity leave and all of the swimming sequences were replaced by dance numbers and Jane Powell took over the role in the film which also starred Steve Reeves. 

Can you imagine if Esther and Steve Reeves had made ATHENA together? Now that would have been cool. RIP to a one of a kind star.

1 comment:

Michael O'Sullivan said...

I just wrote about Jupiter's Darling too, I saw it as a kid and loved it, its a jolly good peplum too, Keel's Hannibal is terrific and it all looks good. Love those dancing elephants !