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Kim Novak

Kim Novak was born in Chicago, Illinois on February 13, 1933 with the birth name of Marilyn Pauline Novak, she was the daughter of a former teacher turned transit clerk and his wife, also a former teacher. Throughout elementary and high school, Kim did not get along well with teachers. She even admitted that she didn't like being told what to do and when to do it. Her first job, after high school, was modeling teen fashions for a local department store. Kim, later, won a scholarship in a modeling school and continued to model part time. Kim later worked odd jobs as an elevator operator, sales clerk, and a dental assistant. The jobs never seemed to work out so she fell back on modeling, the one job she did well. After a stint on the road as a spokesperson for an appliance company, Kim decided to go to Los Angeles and try her luck at modeling there. Ultimately, her modeling landed her an uncredited role in the RKO production of THE FRENCH LINE (1954). The role encompassed nothing more than being seen on a set of stairs. Later a talent agent arranged for a screen test with Columbia Pictures and won a small six month contract. In truth, some of the studio hierarchy thought that Kim was Columbia's answer to Marilyn Monroe. Kim, who was still going by her own name of Marilyn, was originally going to be called Kit Marlowe. She wanted to at least keep her family name of Novak, so the young actress and studio personnel settled on Kim Novak. After taking some acting lessons, which the studio declined to pay for, Kim appeared in her first film opposite Fred MacMurray in 1954's PUSHOVER. Though her role as Lona McLane wasn't exactly a great one, it was her beautiful looks that seemed to capture the eyes of the critics. Later that year, Kim appeared in the film, PHFFFT! with Jack Lemmon and Judy Holliday. Now more and more fans were eager to see this bright new star. These two films set the tone for her career with a lot of fan mail coming her way. Her next film was as Kay Greylek in 1955's FIVE AGAINST THE HOUSE. The film was well-received, but it was her next one for that year that was her best to date. The film was PICNIC. Although Kim did a superb job of acting in the film as did her costars, the film did win two Oscars for editing and set decoration. Kim's next film was with United Artist's on a loan out in THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN ARM. Her performance was flawless, but it was was Kim's beauty that carried the day. The film was a big hit. In 1957, Kim played Linda English in the hit movie PAL JOEY with Frank Sinatra and Rita Hayworth. The film did very well at the box-office, but was crucified by the critics. Kim really didn't seem that interested in the role. She even said she couldn't stand people such as her character. In 1958, Kim appeared in a dual role of Judy Barton and Madeleine Elster in Alfred Hitchcock's, now classic, VERTIGO with Jimmy Stewart. This film's plot was one that thoroughly entertained the theater patrons wherever it played. The film was one in which Stewart's character, a detective, is hired to tail a friend's wife (Kim) and witnesses her "suicide". In the end Stewart finds that he has been duped in an elaborate scheme. Her next film was BELL, BOOK AND CANDLE which didn't fare as well at the box-office. By the early, 1960's Kim's star was beginning to fall especially with the rise of new stars or stars that were remodeling their status within the film community. With a few more non-descript films between 1960 and 1964, she landed the role of Mildred Rogers in OF HUMAN BONDAGE. The film debuted to good reviews. After 1965's THE AMOROUS ADVENTURES OF MOLL FLANDERS, Kim stepped away from the cameras for a while, returning in 1968 to star in THE LEGEND OF LYLAH CLARE. It flopped. After that, Kim, basically, was able to pick what projects she wanted. After THE GREAT BANK ROBBERY in 1969, Kim was away for another four years until she was seen in a television movie called THE THIRD GIRL FROM THE LEFT. Subsequent films were not the type to get the critics to sit up and take notice. In 1981, Kim played, of all people, Kit Marlowe in the TV series Falcon Crest. Her last film, on the silver screen, was LIEBESTRAUM in 1991.

  1. Liebestraum (1991) .... Lillian Anderson Munnsen
  2. Children, The (1990) .... Rose Sellars
    ... aka Meine liebe Rose (1990) (West Germany)

  3. Es hat mich sehr gefreut (1987)
    ... aka I Have Been Very Pleased (1987)
  4. "Falcon Crest" (1981) TV Series .... Kit Marlowe (1986-1987)
  5. Alfred Hitchcock Presents (1985) (TV) .... Rosa (segment "Man From The South")
  6. Malibu (1983) (TV) .... Billie Farnsworth
  7. Mirror Crack'd, The (1980) .... Lola Brewster

  8. Schöner Gigolo, armer Gigolo (1979) .... Helga
    ... aka Just a Gigolo (1979) (USA)
  9. White Buffalo, The (1977) .... Mrs. Poker Jenny Schermerhorn
    ... aka Hunt to Kill (1977) (USA: TV title)
  10. Satan's Triangle (1975) (TV) .... Eva
  11. Tales That Witness Madness (1973) .... Auriol Pageant
    ... aka Witness Madness (1973)
  12. Third Girl from the Left, The (1973) (TV).... Gloria Joyce

  13. Great Bank Robbery, The (1969) .... Sister Lyda Kebanov (forger)
  14. Legend of Lylah Clare, The (1968) .... Lylah Clare/Elsa Brinkmann
  15. Lionpower From MGM (1967) (archive footage) (uncredited) .... (archive footage)
  16. Amorous Adventures of Moll Flanders, The (1965) .... Moll Flanders
    ... aka Moll Flanders (1965)
  17. Kiss Me, Stupid (1964) .... Polly the Pistol
  18. Of Human Bondage (1964) .... Mildred Rogers
  19. Boys' Night Out (1962) .... Cathy
  20. Notorious Landlady, The (1962) .... Carlyle Hardwicke
  21. Pepe (1960) .... Cameo appearance
  22. Strangers When We Meet (1960) .... Maggie Gault

  23. Middle of the Night (1959) .... Betty Preisser
  24. Bell Book and Candle (1958) .... Gillian 'Gil' Holroyd
  25. Vertigo (1958).... Madeleine Elster/Judy Barton
  26. Pal Joey (1957) .... Linda English
  27. Jeanne Eagels (1957) .... Jeanne Eagels
  28. Eddy Duchin Story, The (1956) .... Marjorie Oelrichs
  29. Man with the Golden Arm, The (1955).... Molly
  30. Picnic (1955) .... Madge Owens
  31. 5 Against the House (1955) .... Kay Greylek
  32. Son of Sinbad (1955) (uncredited) .... Raider
    ... aka Nights in a Harem (1955)
  33. Phffft! (1954) .... Janis
  34. Pushover (1954) .... Lona McLane
  35. French Line, The (1954) (uncredited) .... Model on stairs