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TCM Remembers 'Sound of Music' Actress Eleanor Parker with Marathon Programming December 17 (OBIT ROUNDUP)

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by Beth Hanna
December 10, 2013 12:26 PM
2 Comments
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Eleanor Parker

Most people probably know versatile character actress Eleanor Parker, who died on December 9 at age 91, from classic big-screen musical "The Sound of Music." She played the platinum blonde Baroness, who isn't slow to pick up on Christopher Plummer's Captain Von Trapp's true feelings for governess Maria (Julie Andrews). TCM is rolling out an entire Parker retrospective to celebrate her career on December 17, so viewers can become better acquainted, or reacquainted, with her body of work. Check out the lineup, below, plus an obit roundup.

The following is a complete schedule of TCM's tribute to Eleanor Parker:

Tuesday, Dec. 17

6 a.m. – The Very Thought of You (1944)

7:45 a.m. – Of Human Bondage (1946)

9:45 a.m – The Woman in White (1948)

11:45 p.m. – Caged (1950)

1:30 p.m. – Scaramouche (1952)

3:30 p.m. – Interrupted Melody (1955)

5:15 p.m. – Home from the Hill (1960)

Here's TCM's obit:

A remarkably versatile leading lady of the 1940s and '50s, Eleanor Parker signed a contract with Warner Bros. on her 18th birthday after gaining experience on stage in Cleveland, in summer stock and at the Pasadena Playhouse. She made her debut in Raoul Walsh's They Died with Their Boots On (1941) before graduating to starring status in distinguished films like Pride of the Marines (1945), her third movie with director Delmer Daves, and Voice of the Turtle (1947), opposite Ronald Reagan and adapted from John van Druten's Broadway hit.

Parker reached the zenith of her popularity and acclaim in the early '50s, earning three Best Actress Oscar® nominations for her terrorized prison inmate in Caged (1950), as Kirk Douglas' neglected wife with a secret in Detective Story (1951) and as polio-stricken opera star Marjorie Lawrence in Interrupted Melody (1955). That same year, she was also memorable as Frank Sinatra's beautiful but hateful crippled wife in Otto Preminger's The Man with the Golden Arm.

Parker went on to re-team with Raoul Walsh for The King and Four Queens (1956) and Sinatra for Frank Capra's A Hole in the Head (1959). Her 1950s work also included Hugo Haas's Lizzie (1957), in which she played a woman with three distinct personalities, and Carl Schultz's The Seventh Sin (1957), playing the adulterous wife of a doctor who redeems herself during an epidemic. Madison Avenue (1962) marked Parker's last leading role, but she continued to appear in secondary roles through the '70s, most notably as the Baroness in Robert Wise's The Sound of Music (1965). She continued making television appearances through 1991.

An obit roundup, after the jump...

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2 Comments

  • Denise | December 10, 2013 7:10 PMReply

    The Golden Age of Hollywood was brighter because of the presence of Eleanor Parker. She was a beautiful and gifted actress that took her craft seriously and never gave a bad performance which was testiment to her dedication to her art, but she was even more dedicated to her family making a conscience decision to keep her private life PRIVATE and never trading it to further her career or for fame. Ms. Parker was a classy lady and great actress that should have received the Oscar for her perfomances in Caged and Interrupted Melody; and the Academy should have recognized her body of work with the lifetime acheivement award. My thoughts and prayers go out to her children, family, friends and devoted fans. Thank you Ms. Parker for the hundreds of hours of quality entertainment you have left for us and may you enjoy eternal peace.

  • Brian | December 10, 2013 3:40 PMReply

    Her appearance in AN AMERICAN DREAM (1966) is the most memorable thing about that movie (an adaptation of the Norman Mailer novel). She's also great in DETECTIVE STORY, SCARAMOUCHE, THE NAKED JUNGLE, and MANY RIVERS TO CROSS.

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