Thursday, December 19, 2013

R.I.P. Joan Fontaine – Fine Actress and First Lady of the Submarine Seaview.

Actress Joan Fontaine passed away on December 15, 2013, at the age of 96.

Ms. Fontaine may be best known for her starring roles in two Alfred Hitchcock films, Rebecca (1940) and Suspicion (1941) – the latter of which won her an Academy Award.   …And you KNOW how much we love anything by Alfred Hitchcock around here! 

But, to me, even if Barbara Eden might have attracted her share of attention with her memorable (certainly for 1961) opening dance number... (click to enlarge)

...Joan Fontaine will always have the distinction of being the “First Lady of the Submarine Seaview”, in the 1961 feature film version of VOYAGE TO THE BOTTOM OF THE SEA – not to mention…



…her very special status as its first villain and saboteur!  First, I might add, of MANY such villains and saboteurs, over the course of the (sub)sequent television series.

Joan Fontaine with Peter Lorre in "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea" (1961)

To other “Things We Like at TIAH Blog”, Ms. Fontaine also appeared in the TV western WAGON TRAIN – in the episode “The Naomi Kaylor Story” (1963).  
She was quite the villain in WAGON TRAIN too!

Her amazing list of credits, from IMDB, can be found at THIS LINK.  

Rest In Peace, Ms. Joan Fontaine.


Will said...

Joan Fontaine and Lawrence of Arabia star Peter O'Toole, both gone in the same weekend. That's just awful, especially during this time of year.

Joe Torcivia said...

I wholeheartedly agree, Will.

scarecrow33 said...

Thanks for sharing these later appearances of Joan Fontaine, Joe. I had not known about any of these--I will have to check them out.

"Damsel in Distress", anyone? How about "Ivanhoe"?

A great favorite of mine (possibly my favorite of all her films) is "Decameron Nights" in which she stars with Louis Jourdan and they act out a framing story plus three embedded stories within the film, as each character tries to one-up the other with a story about marital fidelity/infidelity.

Of course, "Rebecca" and "Suspicion" are list-toppers, too.

In the late 80's, she did an interview for television that was connected to a broadcast of "The Women", and her anecdotes added considerably to the enjoyment of watching the film.

Overall, a great lady leaving behind a legacy of wonderful films.

Joe Torcivia said...


The great thing about a career such as that of Joan Fontaine is that most everyone has their favorite or special moments! And it always fascinates me how (and where) they intersect -- as ours do with Hitchcock. Thank you for adding yours to this tribute.