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Farrah Fawcett in Charlie’s Angels

Farrah Fawcett in Charlie’s Angels

Farrah Fawcett in Charlie’s Angels

Farrah Fawcett in Charlie’s Angels

By Roberto Rocheta

Farrah Fawcett was a famous actor and model who was born February 2, 1947, and passed away June 25, 2009 at the age of 62.

She was probably best known for her role in “Charlie’s Angel’s”, a popular show that aired in the 1970’s.

Farrah Fawcett was originally from Corpus Christi, Texas. Her parent’s names were James Fawcett and Pauline Evans.

Farrah Fawcett attended high school in the early 1960’s, and concentrated her studies in the arts. She was involved with athletics due to her father’s influence, and her classmates voted her as the “Beautiful Woman.”

Farrah Fawcett attended the University of Texas in Austin. Although her ambitions were to become an actor someday, she majored in and graduated with a degree in Microbiology.

However, while she was in college, Farrah Fawcett’s dreams of acting started to become a reality. She won a beauty contest on campus. When this happened, a talent agent noticed her and thought her beautiful looks would land her a carreer in show business. Farrah Fawcett’s new agent was right.

When Farrah Fawcett graduated, she moved to Los Angeles in the late 1960’s. Her blond hair, attractive face and athletic physique helped her land acting jobs in TV commercials, advertising products such as Ultra-Brite toothpaste, Noxzema, and Wella Balsam shampoo.

In 1965, Farrah Fawcett began to guest-star in various roles in TV shows. She appeared in “I Dream of Jeannie”, and in 1967 she appeared in “The Flying Nun.”

When she met and began dating (and later married) actor Lee Majors in 1968, who was the star of the popular 1965 show “The Big Valley”, Farrah Fawcett’s career took off even more. Lee Majors’ influence in the industry helped Farrah to appear in “The Partridge Family” in 1970. That same year, Farrah Fawcett had a large role in the movie “Myra Breckinridge,” which was based on the Gore Vidal novel. However, there was as much drama behind the scenes as there was on the set. There were many arguments amongst the cast and crew, and Farrah described the experience as being “very unpleasant”. In the end, the movie was a box office blunder, and Farrah Fawcett was ultimately ashamed of the release.

The reason that the all-American boy prefers beauty to brains is that he can see better than he can think. – Farrah Fawcett

In 1973, Farrah Fawcett got a role in “Harry O” — a crime series in 1973.

Also in 1973, July 28, Farrah Fawcett and Lee Majors were married. It was then that Farrah Fawcett began to use the name Farrah Fawcett Majors.

Farrah Fawcett’s new husband Lee Majors began to star in his own popular TV series, “The Six Million Dollar Man” in 1974.

Farrah Fawcett’s famous 1976 poster in a red bathing suit. It sold over 8 million copies.

Farrah Fawcett Poster

Farrah Fawcett Poster

About this time, Farrah Fawcett Majors posed for the famous red bathing suit poster — which sold more than 8 million copies.

Farrah Fawcett Majors was cast in a supporting role in a science-fiction film, “Logan’s Run” in 1976.

It was in 1976 that Aaron Spelling and Leonard Goldberg put Farrah Fawcett Majors landed the legendary, leading role in “Charlie’s Angels”. The show first aired on September 22 that year.

About this time, Farrah Fawcett Majors posed for the famous red bathing suit poster — which sold more than 8 million copies.

“Charlie’s Angels” was a crime / drama show, which Farrah Fawcett Majors played a female private detective named Jill Monroe for a wealthy and mysterious businessman, Charlie (whose face was not shown). She starred alongside two other detectives, played by Kate Jackson and Jaclyn Smith.

“Charlie’s Angels” had a huge following, setting new records in its ratings. It became the most popular show on television. Farrah Fawcett Majors earned $10,000 for every episode. Though this figure isn’t nearly as much as what TV stars earn today, it was a large amount in the 1970’s.

Farrah Fawcett Majors won a People’s Choice Award for “Favorite Performer in a New TV Program.”

Despite Farrah Fawcett Majors’ success on the show, she experienced relationship troubles with Lee Majors at home. He insisted that she should be home by 6:30 PM every evening to have dinner ready on the table.

Marriages that last are with people who do not live in Los Angeles. – Farrah Fawcett

Farrah Fawcett Majors became the most widely known amongst her co-stars, though they all shared rising fame due to the popularity of “Charlie’s Angels.” However, in 1977, she left the show after only one season, stating that she was no longer satisfied with the weak content and storylines of the show. She also complained that she had to work many long hours on the show, which she said was taking a toll on her marriage with Lee Majors.

Farrah Fawcett Majors was sued by the producers of “Charlie’s Angels”, who claimed her departure was a breach of contract. However, the contract was never officially signed to begin with. As a result of the legal battles, both parties agreed that Farrah Fawcett Majors would make guest appearances in subsequent years of the show, in six separate episodes from 1978-1980.

She turned her attention to pursue acting in more films. In 1978 she starred in “Somebody Killed Her Husband,” and in 1979 she starred in “Sunburn.”

Farrah Fawcett Majors’ popularity started to take a downward turn. Her once-loyal fans felt disappointed over her decision to leave “Charlie’s Angels.” Her films during these years had failed financially.

Farrah and Lee Majors separated in 1979.

In 1980, Farrah Fawcett starred in “Saturn 3″ — and appeared topless in one scene.

God gave women intuition and femininity. Used properly, the combination easily jumbles the brain of any man I’ve ever met. – Farrah Fawcett

She appeared in the comedy film, “The Cannonball Run” in 1981, which starred Burt Reynolds. The movie was a financial success, but did little to boost her career.

In 1981, she befriended Ryan O’Neal, a friend of Lee Majors.

Farrah Fawcett and Lee Majors officially divorced over irreconcilable differences in 1982, which she filed for and Lee Majors agreed to. Farrah then went back to using her original name, Farrah Fawcett.

Farrah Fawcett began dating actor Ryan O’Neal in 1982, and they started living together.

When Farrah Fawcett starred in the television movie, “The Burning Bed” in 1984, her career started to make a comeback. Based on a true story, the movie was a huge success and she garnered the praise of critics, and nominations for a Golden Globe and an Emmy. This spawned her interest in promoting organizations that raise awareness about the issues of battered women.

Farrah Fawcett gave birth to a son, Redmond O’Neal in 1985, fathered by Ryan O’Neal.

Farrah had a starring role in “Extremities” in 1986, which was met with both positive and negative reviews.

Once again, Farrah Fawcett was nominated for another Emmy in 1989 for her appearance in “Small Sacrifices” — another television movie, which was based on a true crime story.

Farrah Fawcett and her boyfriend Ryan O’Neal appeared together in a television show, “Good Sports” in 1991. Unfortunately, the show only ran for nine episodes, which critics blamed on Ryan O’Neal’s poor performances.

To the world’s suprise, at the age of 48, Farrah Fawcett appeared semi-nude in an issue of Playboy in 1995. It was Playboy’s best-selling issue of the 1990’s.

In 1997, Farrah Fawcett and Ryan O’Neal ended their romantic relationship, although they continued to remain close friends.

On June 5, 1997, Farrah Fawcett appeared on “Late Show with David Letterman”, where she gave Letterman what was said to be a “rambling interview.” Though she claimed that her appearance of looking “distracted” was all in fun and joking with audience members, rumors were being circulated that it was due to possible drug abuse.

Despite the bad press about her appearance with David Letterman, her career rose even higher as a result of her role in the successful movie “The Apostle” in 1997, in which she played opposite of actor Robert Duvall. The movie was about a Pentecostal preacher (Duvall), and Farrah Fawcett played his wife.

Also in 1997, Farrah began to date producer and film maker James Orr. However, their relationship took a nasty turn the following year. In 1998, James Orr asked Farrah Fawcett to marry him. When she declined, in a fit of rage James Orr physically beat her, severely injuring her. She disassociated herself with him, and James Orr was charged and sentenced for assault. She tried to keep a low profile because the bad press from the incident had become an embarrassment. In spite of this, she continued to work in show business.

In 2003, Farrah Fawcett appeared in “The Guardian.” Because of her outstanding performance, she received yet another honor — her third nomination for an Emmy.

Sadly, Farrah Fawcett’s mother passed away in 2006. But this wasn’t the only bad news she would receive that year. Not long afterwards, Farrah Fawcett was diagnosed with anal cancer, and her friend Ryan O’Neal was diagnosed with leukemia. Farrah Fawcett began to undergo treatments of chemotherapy and surgery.

On her birthday, February 2, 2007 when she turned 60, it was announced to the world that Farrah Fawcett was free of cancer. However, in the next two following years, her health deteriorated once again.

In April of 2009, it was revealed that her cancer was back again and had spread to her liver.

Farrah Fawcett co-produced her own documentary of her battle with cancer, which was called “Farrah’s Story”. It was aired on May 15, 2009, on ABC. Although it was met with mixed reviews and criticism of detailing her own harsh battle with the disease, the ratings were overwhelming with roughly 9 million viewers.

Finally, Farrah Fawcett passed away on June 25, 2009.

Sources:  http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000396/bio [Retrieved on May 30, 2010]. And http://www.people.com/people/archive/article/0,,20060821,00.html [Retrieved on May 30, 2010]. Reduced-resolution pictures retrieved from http://beta.images.theglobeandmail.com/archive/00024/Farrah_Fawcett_po_24263gm-b.jpg [Retrieved on May 30, 2010], and http://img2.timeinc.net/people/i/2008/gallery/farrah_fawcett/farrah_fawcett400.jpg[Retrieved on May 31, 2010], and complies with fair use under US copyright law.

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