I think most people who are into Old Hollywood go through phases. Right now I am utterly obsessed with Jayne (as always) and Sharon Tate.
Sharon is well known for her untimely death. It’s a major focus for many and one of the most famous crimes of American history. Yet by focusing on her death, we’re letting her killers win. There have been hundreds of books that focus on the her murder, whether it be the entire premise of the book or anthologies.
Sharon was born on January 24, 1943. When she was six months old she won Miss Tiny Tot of Dallas Texas. Sharon’s father was in the military and they moved around the US before setting (for a bit) in Italy. Her beauty only continued to grow and she was proclaimed Vincenza American High School’s first homecoming queen. Sharon was popular in school and active in after school clubs and sports, including cheer leading and basketball. Sharon also became fluent in Italian.
By the time she graduated, Hollywood was calling. Sharon became a popular model as well as appearing in commercials. Her first American screen appearance was in the popular television show, “Mr Ed.” Sharon appeared in various television shows, with a recurring appearance on “The Beverly Hillbillies.” 1966, saw the release of her first movie, “Eye Of The Devil.” The following year saw the release of Sharon’s most famous role, Jennifer in “Valley of the Dolls.”
An up and coming star, Sharon couldn’t stand her sex kitten image. Like the blondes of the fifties, she wanted to be taken seriously as an actress. She referred to her image in a sarcastic way, calling herself “sexy little me.” One can only imagine what she could have accomplished if Sharon had been able to continue her film career.
On August 9th, 1969, Sharon along with former flame and best friend Jay Sebring, Abigail Folger, Folger’s boyfriend Wojciech Frykowski, and the groundskeeper’s friend, Steven Parent, were killed at Sharon’s home. Sharon was 8 1/2 months pregnant. Her husband, Roman Polanski, was in London finishing up “Day of the Dolphin.” I have chosen not to name her killers or their leader out of respect for Sharon. Nor will I show any of the crime scene photos.
Let’s remember the film legacy of one of Hollywood’s most beautiful women and the person behind her screen image. Sharon’s sister, Debra Tate, has released a beautiful photo book of her sister entitled Sharon Tate: Recollection. You can find it on Amazon. Please visit Debra Tate’s website here for more on Sharon.