Fashion and Film
Jean Simmons: A Fond Farewell
I was saddened to read of the passing of Jean Simmons in the Los Angeles Times on Sunday. After all the fun and glitz of the SAG Awards, it was sobering to read of the loss of a great, versatile actress and a classic style icon. Jean died here in Santa Monica of lung cancer last Friday. As as kid, I remembering watch her in the movie Spartacus, and thinking how absolutely gorgeous she was. She was soft spoken with a gentle style. There was never anything over powering about Jean when I saw her on the screen. She was frequently mistaken for other classic beauties like Vivien Leigh and Elizabeth Taylor. Unlike them, she later moved into playing character roles like the mother in the Thornbirds mini-series. My favorite movie of hers was Young Bess, where she played the young Queen Elizabeth I of England. When I think of her style, I think of simplicity. Hair worn short, or pulled back from her face, little makeup except for her striking eyes, beautifully shaped brows, a little black dress and a string of pearls. It doesn’t take a million dollars to replicate Jean Simmons’ look. In many ways, Nicole Kidman reminds me of Jean Simmons with her grace of movement, soft voice and poise.