Today, December 15th is a very sad day for classic movie lovers, Hollywood lost two gigantic film icons, Peter O’Toole and Joan Fontaine.
First, we are going to make a tribute to Joan Fontaine.
Joan Fontaine was a British American actress. Her real name was Joan de Beauvoir de Havilland. She was born in Japan to British parents, de Havilland and her older sister Olivia de Havilland moved to California in 1919. Fontaine began her career on the stage in 1935 and signed a contract with RKO Pictures that same year.
In 1941, she earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress for her role in Rebecca, directed by Alfred Hitchcock. The following year, she won the Academy Award for Best Actress for Hitchcock’s Suspicion (1941) making Fontaine the only actress to ever win an Academy Award in a film directed by Hitchcock.
Fontaine and sister de Havilland are the only siblings to have won lead acting Academy Awards. During the 1940s to the 1990s, Fontaine continued her career in roles on the stage and in radio, television and film. She released her autobiography, No Bed of Roses, in 1978. After a career spanning over 50 years, Fontaine made her last on-screen appearance in 1994.
Fontaine lived in Carmel-by-the-Sea, California where she owned a home, Villa Fontana. It was there that she died of natural causes at the age of 96 in 2013.
Rest in Peace, Joan Fontaine.
We will never forget you.