Vivien Leigh
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Vivien Leigh : An Intimate Portrait

4.13 (386 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

Vivien Leigh's mystique was a combination of staggering beauty, glamour, romance, and genuine talent displayed in her Oscar-winning performances in Gone With the Wind and A Streetcar Named Desire . For more than thirty years, her name alone sold out theatres and cinemas the world over, and she inspired many of the greatest visionaries of her time: Laurence Olivier loved her Winston Churchill praised her Christian Dior dressed her.Through both an in-depth narrative and a stunning array of photos, Vivien Leigh: An Intimate Portrait presents the personal story of one of the most celebrated women of the twentieth century, an engrossing tale of success, struggles, and triumphs. It chronicles Leigh's journey from her birth in India to prominence in British film, winning the most-coveted role in Hollywood history, her celebrated love affair with Laurence Olivier, through to her untimely death at age fifty-three in 1967.Author Kendra Bean is the first Vivien Leigh biographer to delve into the Laurence Olivier Archives, where an invaluable collection of personal letters and documents ranging from interview transcripts to film contracts to medical records shed new insight on Leigh's story. Illustrated by hundreds of rare and never-before-published images, including those by Leigh's official" photographer, Angus McBean, Vivien Leigh: An Intimate Portrait is the first illustrated biography to closely examine the fascinating, troubled, and often misunderstood life of Vivien Leigh: the woman, the actress, the legend.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 272 pages
  • 214 x 256 x 30mm | 1,379.98g
  • Running Press,U.S.
  • Running Press Adult
  • London, United States
  • English
  • colour photos throughout, B&W photos throughout
  • 0762450991
  • 9780762450992
  • 150,873

Review quote

"A worthy tribute to an eternally fascinating star." --Kirkus Reviews "More than an organized compilation of facts, Vivien Leigh: An Intimate Portrait takes its reader wholly into the past and showcases Vivien's life in an explosion of colorful detail. There's a quality to the book that could be described as atmospheric, raising the bar not only for how illustrated biographies are presented, but also for how they make us feel. In the case of An Intimate Portrait, a gorgeous and thoughtfully-rendered letter of admiration and affection, the reader can expect to find themselves fully immersed in Vivien's stratosphere, a passenger in the life of a tremendous woman who left an unprecedented mark on theater, cinema, and the world at large." --LiteraryInklings.com "a stunning and thoroughly researched tribute." --Rage Monthly "Classic movie-lovers will be thrilled by Kendra Bean's lavishly illustrated and sympathetic biography." --Bay Area Reporter
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Flap copy

Vivien Leigh's mystique was a combination of staggering beauty, glamour, romance, and genuine talent displayed in her Oscar-winning performances in "Gone With the Wind" and "A Streetcar Named Desire." For more than thirty years, her name alone sold out theaters and cinemas the world over, and she inspired many of the greatest visionaries of her time: Laurence Olivier loved her; Winston Churchill praised her; Christian Dior dressed her.
Through both an in-depth narrative and a stunning array of photos, "Vivien Leigh: An Intimate Portrait" presents the personal story of one of the most celebrated women of the twentieth century, an engrossing tale of success, struggles, and triumphs. It chronicles Leigh's journey from her birth in India to prominence in British film, winning the most-coveted role in Hollywood history, her celebrated love affair with Laurence Olivier, through to her untimely death at age fifty-three in 1967.
Author Kendra Bean is the first Vivien Leigh biographer to delve into the Laurence Olivier Archives, where an invaluable collection of personal letters and documents ranging from interview transcripts to film contracts to medical records shed new insight on Leigh's story. Illustrated by hundreds of rare and never-before-published images, including those by Leigh's "official" photographer, Angus McBean, "Vivien Leigh: An Intimate Portrait" is the first illustrated biography to closely examine the fascinating, troubled, and often misunderstood life of Vivien Leigh: the woman, the actress, the legend.
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About Claire Bloom

Kendra Bean has an MA in Film Studies from King's College London. Her writing on Vivien Leigh and cinema has been published in numerous film publications and she has participated in the production of numerous festivals, exhibits, and documentaries relating to classic film. She is the designer and editor of vivandlarry, an online historical archive and blog dedicated to Vivien Leigh, Laurence Olivier, classic Hollywood, and world cinema. Kendra resides in London, England.
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Rating details

386 ratings
4.13 out of 5 stars
5 41% (157)
4 37% (144)
3 18% (68)
2 4% (14)
1 1% (3)

Our customer reviews

This book is a delight to behold. Lots of information about Vivien Leigh and some never before seen photographs. Beautiful presentation and a book I shall cherish always.show more
by Julie Unicomb
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