Friday, December 16, 2011

Pop Quiz: Sibling Revelry

Back by popular demand (not!), we have another edition of Pop Quiz. (It's really coming about because I am facing down a tremendous weekend and want to leave a little something more simple here before I dive in so that The Underworld isn't dormant again for a long stretch! Perhaps if nothing else, you may like some of the pictures or the trivia.)

In this edition, you will be given the photograph of a person who has acted in TV or movies, maybe a lot, maybe a very little, and then be asked to name his or her famous sibling (who will also be an actor or actress of note.) Some of the celebs in the clue are less famous than their brother or sister, some are about the same in notability, some are more famous that their relative, though in most of them I have attempted to hold back the slightly more famous persons. Answers are at the bottom of the post!

1. Lord, this one should be a gimme for anyone with even a passing interest in classic films. This lady is the younger sister (by just over a year) to a two-time Oscar-winning actress. She has one herself, though, and won hers first! This event seemed to enflame an already simmering resentment between the two that eventually snowballed into many years of estrangment and discord. The ladies are still plugging along today at ages ninety-five and ninety-six!


2. This leading man of films of the '40s and mid-'50s, some quite classic, dealing with lynching, murder and post-war adjustment, eventually had to face up to a serious drinking problem. His first wife, and the mother of two of his children, died after just three years together, but his second marriage lasted fifthy-three years until his death. A brother fifteen years his junior later became a film and (mostly) TV actor, especially hitting his stride in the '70s as the lead in a popular police show. The actor shown died in 1992 at age eighty-three. The brother is eighty-seven at present.


3. This gentleman worked in films from 1940 to 1964, though he is primarily known for a run of mid-'40s films about a spy with an aviary name. His Oscar-winning brother, about two years younger than he, was better known than him and worked in more (and more better known) and more enduring films. The brother actually originated the role that the man shown here was known for, but, once he grew tired of the part, he passed it along to his sibling! The actor shown here died in 1967 at the age of sixty-two. The brother committed suicide in 1972 at the age of sixty-five.


4. This gentleman worked in films for a while in the late '40s and mid-'50s, but is chiefly known for headlining one of television's all-time popular and long-running shows. In fact, he appeared in 635 episodes of the show! His brother, less than three years younger, had a very busy, if unremarkable, 1950s film career of his own, but is also chiefly known as the lead actor of a popular TV show. He only filmed a comparatively less impressive 143 episodes of his, though. That number is 178 if you count his work in the updated rendition of the show that premiered fifteen years after the original series' cancellation. The actor pictured died earlier this year at eighty-eight while the brother died last year at eighty-three.


5. This lady began working in films at the tender age of seven, though her film career proper mostly took place in the 1920s and '30s. A 1935 marriage signaled the beginning of the end of her career aspirations, though it must have been worth it since they remained wed until the man's death forty-one years later. She occasionally appeared in a movie after that and also guest-starred a few times on her younger sister's (by under three years) highly popular anthology series. The Oscar-winning sister was a major movie star from the '30s through the early '50s before segueing highly successfully into TV. The ladies actually appeared together once as sisters (along with their own two other sisters as well!) in a 1939 biographical film starring Don Ameche. The lady shown died in 1997 at the age of eighty-seven while the more famous actress died at the very same age in 2000.


6. The man shown here worked as a young boy in several films before embarking on a 1950s film career. He then costarred in a very popular television western show from 1957 to 1962, trading off story lines with a fellow actor who went on to even greater fame. After that, he mostly stuck to guest roles, even showing up twice on his famous ex-costar's private eye series in 1977. He had a sister six years his senior who had enjoyed a very healthy stage career and had also worked in filmd throughout the early to mid-'40s. In 1956, she was Oscar-nominated for the (now somewhat campy!) film adaptation of one of her big stage hits, though strangely this simultaneously marked the end of her movie career. (There were close to a dozen TV appearances acattered over the years afterwards, though.) He died in 1992 at age sixty-five while she lived to be seventy-three, passing away in 1995.


7. This actress made her mark on the Broadway stage and proceeded to act in 1950s films and a healthy amount of television. When her opportunities as an actress in feature films dwindled, she worked in supporting roles in films of her far more famous brother in 1963 and 1966. Though she never became truly famous in her own right, she figures into one of the all-time camp classics of the cinema, playing the shocked witness to a bout of serious mother-daughter fighting. She died in 2005 at the age of eighty-six, out-living her five years younger brother by about a year and a half. The brother is one of the most heralded actors in the history of cinema, a twice Oscar-winning gent who sat at the top of Hollywood before social issues led him to hold the entire place in disdain. Though he continued to act, sometimes to great acclaim, his one handsome looks were buried under a serious weight gain.


8. You would likely have to have seen one particular bad/good horror film (starring Vincent Price) to know this actress. It was also her final credited screen role. She had appeared briefly in The High and the Mighty in 1954 and also as an uncredited slave girl in Cecil B. DeMille's classic The Ten Commandments in 1956, but was never able to get a foothold in the business the way her far more famous brother did. The brother, three years her junior, had a staggering, lengthy career with many memorable parts including soldiers, sheriffs, deranged killers and private detectives, to mention just a few. Famous for his rebellious attitude, he was popular, but only received one Oscar nomination in his career. He died in 1997 at the age of seventy-nine. She lived on to 2003, dying at age eighty-eight.


9. This curvaceous cutie is practically unknown to most of the world at hand, though she did costar on a television comedy series for a span of six years. In a more than unique twist, the show actually ran from 1982 to 1983, but was then revamped and reinstated from 1986 to 1988. She made 85 episodes in all. The series marks her sole list of credits as an on-camera actress. Just as unique is the fact that she won the job in the first place because her sister (a woman twelve years older than she) had originated the role in the big-screen movie that inspired the series. The sister was and is a multi-talented superstar who has worked in close to every form of entertainment. Both ladies are still alive today.


10. The young lady strutting her stuff here tried her hand at acting in the late-'50s and early-'60s, mostly in smaller roles. Her big sister (four and a half years her senior) had already broken into the movies and was becoming a successful star on their home turf. Though she was signed to a major studio and worked steadily, big time movie stardom eluded her. It was later in her life that she became a household name and an internationally-recognized celebrity. As for the girl pictured, she tried a different approach to her career and (partly thanks to the premature death of one of that field's leading lights, whose working style was very similar) found massive success. Both of these ladies are still with us.

~~ Don't scroll further if you're still in guessing mode! ~~


The answers to these quiz questions are below. Below the answers are side-by-side shots of the siblings in question, in the order they were described above! Thanks for playing and have a great weekend.


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1. Miss Joan Fontaine and Miss Olivia de Havilland

2. Dana Andrews (of The Ox-Box Incident, Laura and The Best Years of Our Lives) and Steve Forrest (of S.W.A.T. and other TV shows.)

3. Tom Conway (best known as The Falcon) and George Sanders (from All About Eve and many other classic films.)

4. James Arness (of Gunsmoke) and Peter Graves of (Mission: Impossible.)

5. Sally Blane and Loretta Young (who worked with their other sisters in The Story of Alexander Graham Bell.)

6. Jack Kelly of Maverick (costarring James Garner, later of The Rockford Files) and Nancy Kelly of The Bad Seed.

7. Jocelyn Brando (Redbook magazine reporter Barbara Bennett in Mommie Dearest) and Marlon Brando.

8. Julie Mitchum (of The House on Haunted Hill) and Robert Mitchum (Oscar nominee for The Story of G.I. Joe and star of Cape Fear and many other movies.)

9. Rachel Dennison of Nine to Five and Dolly Parton of Nine to Five.

10. Jackie Collins (successful novelist in the vein of Jacqueline Susann) and Joan Collins (20th Century Fox starlet who later played Alexis on Dynasty.)

3 comments:

normadesmond said...

never, ever knew about dana & steve.

Java Bean Rush said...

I didn't know that Dana Andrews and George Sanders had brothers, or that Brando had a sister.

Very interesting.


- Java

Scooter said...

FUN! But, boy, did I suck at this...I'm at 33% and that's grading on a curve!