The iconic image of Farrah Fawcett in a one-piece red bathing suit, is the best-selling poster in history.
The iconic image of Farrah Fawcett in a one-piece red bathing suit, is the best-selling poster in history.

Famous birthdays this week: Farrah Fawcett

02/02/1947 - 25/06/2009 (Died age 62).

"God gave women intuition and femininity. Used properly, the combination easily jumbles the brain of any man I've ever met”.

1947: Farrah Leni Fawcett was born in Corpus Christi, Texas, USA and was an American actress, model, and artist. A four-time Emmy Award nominee and six-time Golden Globe Award nominee, Fawcett rose to international fame when she posed for her iconic red swimsuit poster which became the best selling pin-up poster in history.

1965-68: She attended the University of Texas, in Austin where she studied art and joined the Delta Delta Delta Sorority.

1968: In the summer following her junior year, Fawcett moved to Hollywood with her parents' permission to "try her luck" in the entertainment industry. Upon arriving in Hollywood in 1968, Fawcett was signed to a $350-a-week contract with Screen Gems.

1969: Her earliest acting appearances were guest spots on The Flying Nun and I Dream of Jeannie. She made numerous other TV appearances, including Getting Together, Owen Marshall: Counselor at Law, Mayberry R.F.D., and The Partridge Family.

She appeared in four episodes of The Six Million Dollar Man with husband Lee Majors on The Dating Game and S.W.A.T, and had a recurring role on Harry O alongside David Janssen as the title character's girlfriend, Sue. She had a sizable part in the French romantic-drama Love Is a Funny Thing.

1970: She played the role of Mary Ann Pringle in Myra Breckinridge.

1973: She was married to Majors from 1973 to 1982, although the couple separated in 1979. During her marriage, she was known and credited in her roles as Farrah Fawcett-Majors.

1976: After Pro Arts Inc. pitched the idea of a poster of Fawcett to her agent, a photo shoot was arranged with photographer Bruce McBroom, who was hired by the poster company. According to friend Nels Van Patten, Fawcett styled her own hair and did her makeup without the aid of a mirror. Her blonde highlights were further heightened by a squeeze of lemon juice. From 40 rolls of film, Fawcett herself selected her six favorite pictures, and eventually the choice was narrowed to the one that made her famous in a one-piece red bathing suit. Due to the popularity of her poster, Fawcett earned a supporting role in Michael Anderson's science-fiction film Logan's Run with Michael York. She and her husband, television star Lee Majors, were frequent tennis partners with producer Aaron Spelling.

Spelling and his business partner eventually chose Fawcett to play Jill Munroe in their upcoming made-for-TV movie, Charlie's Angels, a movie of the week which aired on March 21 on ABC. The movie starred Fawcett (then billed as Farrah Fawcett-Majors), Kate Jackson, and Jaclyn Smith as private investigators for Townsend Associates, a detective agency run by a reclusive multimillionaire whom the women had never met.

1977: In a interview with TV Guide, she said, "When the show was number three, I thought it was our acting. When we got to be number one, I decided it could only be because none of us wears a bra." Fawcett's appearance in the television show boosted sales of her poster, and she earned far more in royalties from poster sales than from her salary for appearing in Charlie's Angels.

Her hairstyle went on to become an international trend, with women sporting a "Farrah-do", a "Farrah-flip", or simply "Farrah hair". Fawcett left Charlie's Angels after only one season. After a series of legal battles over her contract with ABC, Cheryl Ladd eventually succeeded her on the show, portraying Jill Munroe's younger sister Kris Munroe.

1978-80: She reluctantly signed a new contract with ABC stating that she would make six guest appearances on the series over a two-year period.

1979: Fawcett was romantically involved with actor Ryan O'Neal until 1997.

1980: Fawcett starred with Kirk Douglas in Stanley Donen's science-fiction film Saturn 3; the film earned unfavorable reviews from critics and experienced poor box office sales. Fawcett had steadfastly resisted appearing nude in magazines throughout the 1970s and 1980s, even though she had briefly appeared topless in the film.

1981: She starred alongside an ensemble cast, which included Burt Reynolds, Dean Martin, and Sammy Davis, Jr., in the comedy The Cannonball Run. Later that year, she co-starred with Katharine Ross, Sam Elliott, and Andy Griffith in the television movie Murder in Texas.

1984: Her role as battered wife Francine Hughes in the fact-based television movie earned her the first of her four Emmy Award nominations. She was nominated for an Emmy Award for her portrayal of Francine Huges in the film The Burning Bed.

1985: She had a son with Ryan O'Neal - Redmond James Fawcett-O'Neal, born January 30 in Los Angeles.

1986: Fawcett appeared in the movie version of Extremities, which was also well received by critics and performed well financially. For her performance she received a Golden Globe nomination for Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture - Drama.

1989: Her portrayal of convicted murderer Diane Downs in the miniseries Small Sacrifices earned her a second Emmy nomination and her sixth Golden Globe Award nomination.

1995: She caused a major stir by posing semi-nude in the December issue of Playboy.

1996: Fawcett was ranked No. 26 on TV Guide's "50 Greatest TV stars of All-Time.

1997: At the age of 50, she appeared in a pictorial for the July issue of Playboy, which also became a top seller. From 1997 to 1998, Fawcett had a relationship with Canadian filmmaker James Orr. The relationship ended when Orr was charged with and later convicted of beating Fawcett during a 1998 fight between the two.

2000: She worked with director Robert Altman and an all-star cast in the feature film Dr. T & the Women, as the wife of Richard Gere. (Her character has a mental breakdown, leading to Fawcett's first fully nude appearance.)

Madonna's brother Christopher Ciccone describes befriending Fawcett around this time and giving her a studio visit for her abstract paintings and sculpture. Fawcett's collaboration with sculptor Keith Edmier was exhibited at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, later traveling to The Andy Warhol Museum.

2004: Fawcett continued to work in television, with well-regarded appearances in made-for-television movies and on popular television series including Ally McBeal and four episodes each of Spin City and The Guardian. Her work on the latter show earned her a third Emmy nomination.

2006: Fawcett was diagnosed with anal cancer in 2006 and began treatment that included chemotherapy and surgery.

2009: The two-hour documentary Farrah's Story, which was filmed by Fawcett and friend Alana Stewart, aired on NBC on May 15, 2009.At its premiere airing, the documentary was watched by nearly nine million people and it was re-aired on the broadcast network's cable stations MSNBC, Bravo and Oxygen.

Fawcett died on June 25 at the age of 62, at Saint John's Health Center in Santa Monica, California, with Ryan O'Neal and Alana Stewart by her side. A private funeral was held in Los Angeles on June 30. Farrah's son Redmond was permitted to leave his California detention center to attend the service, where he gave the first reading. A month after her passing on July 16, Fawcett earned her fourth Emmy nomination as the producer of Farrah's Story.

2010: In March, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences upset family and friends of Fawcett when she was excluded from the "In Memoriam" montage at the 82nd Academy Awards ceremony.

2011: The red one-piece bathing suit she wore in her famous 1976 poster was donated to the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History (NMAH) on February 2.


Fawcett began her early education at the parish school of the church her family attended, St. Patrick's Roman Catholic Church in Corpus Christi. She graduated from W. B. Ray High School in Corpus Christi, where she was voted "most beautiful" by her classmates in her freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior years of high school.

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