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Tuesday, July 15, 2008

No chemicals on my hair!

In 1963 Marisa Mell had already 10 roles on her C.V. in Germany and her native Austria. It was now time to start an international carreer. She landed the part of Françoise Fayol in Ken Russel's 1964 movie "French Dressing", a British production about a deck-chair attendant at a British fictional resort promoting a film festival featuring a French blond sexpot. Not an important part but it was an international production in the UK. So the German teenage magazine "Bravo" put her on the cover of their August 06, 1963 issue (nr. 32). In a little article in the back of the magazine Bravo told their readers that Marisa Mell was now shooting a movie in England and was refusing to dye her hair blond as the producers asked. Marisa's argument was that she didn't want to damage her beautiful thick brown hair with chemicals. A blond wig was the only solution. As seen on the cover of the June, 1964 issue of "ABC Film Review" it was a horrible looking thing that ruined her personality as an actress and her credibility as character in the movie. The film was a disaster! Wearing a blond wig during her carreer would not be restricted to French Dressing alone. A few years later in 1967 under the direction of Mario Bava, Marisa Mell would replace the real blond French actress Catherine Deneuve as Eva Kant in the movie Danger: Diabolik!. In the Italian fumetti Diabolik, the partner of the master criminal, Lady Eva Kant was a beautiful blond women of aristocracy! So the actress had also to be blond in the movie but again Marisa did not give in to become blond. "No chemicals on my hair!" For the second time a wig had to turn a dark haired Marisa into a blond haired Eva Kant. This time the wig was of much better quality and had a much more natural look and feeling. At the end of the shooting Marisa got so fond of the wig that she took it home as a souvenir. Strangely enough it would not be the end of the now famous wig. Two years later the wig appeared again in the 1967 Italian film "Una sull'altra" by director Lucio Fulci. In this giallo Marisa played a double role and her character had to have blond hair to make a distinction for her other character. At the end of the movie, the wig had even a crucial role in the plot with a twist ending.

Danger: Diabolik - Trailer (Mario BAVA)

Una sull'altra - Marisa Mell Striptease (Lucio FULCI)

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