CAROLE LOMBARD - My Favorite Actress

Friday, March 29, 2013

A quick primer on Diana Rigg

The wonderful Diana Rigg

Carole Lombard. Bette Davis. Doris Day. All classic movie fans recognize these names immediately. But a few of my followers and friends have shook their heads and asked me who the heck is Diana Rigg. Since Diana is in the final four for this year's tourney, I thought it would be prudent to shed some light on her. So here we go.

Born Enid Diana Elizabeth Rigg on July 20, 1938 in Doncaster, Yorkshire, England, UK.
Got her start in small bits in British tv films in the late 50's and early 60's.
Caught her first major break when cast as Emma Peel in 1965 on the hit spy TV series, The Avengers, with co-star Patrick Macnee. She was not in the series when it first started in 1962. That honor went to the wonderful Honor Blackman who played Cathy Gale. And when Diana left the show in 1968 her replacement was the spunky Linda Thorson who portrayed Tara King.

As Emma Peel..always prepared

Diana first major film came after she left The Avengers. It was in 1969 and it was the James Bond film, On Her Majesty's Secret Service with George Lazenby, who replaced Sean Connery as the super spy. Rigg was cast as Tracy and has the distinction of being the only woman to carry the name Bond and become his wife. Bond may have lots of girlfriends and one night stands, etc..but he only settled down the one time...and it was to Tracy. Diana Rigg gives one of the best performances you will ever see in a Bond film. She is engaging, resourceful, melancholy, funny...just all around and memorable.

The only woman to become wife to James Bond

Her next biggest and most know film has to The Hospital (1971) co-starring George C. Scott, a black comedy about the day in the life of a hospital. I only saw it one time many, many years ago but remember it  being pretty good.

Diana would land her own TV series called Diana in 1974 but sadly it only lasted one year. Not too many people even realize she had her own tv series. It was a comedy and center on a young woman (Rigg) who moves from London to New York. all to any part she takes in

For the better part of the 80's and 90's Diana concentrating on theater work, starring in such works as Medea, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Mother Courage and Her Children, Britannicus and Phedre. And tons of movies for PBS. Oh and she has appeared on the long running UK series, Doctor Who. And was made a dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth the second in 1994 for her contributions to theater and film. In short, Diana is a well respected actress and definitely deserves to be in the conversation of all time great actresses.

Good luck Diana!

And one more thing..she will be appearing in this year's season three of Game of Thrones, starting Sunday, March 31st...super cool!


Robin@DecoratingTennisGirl said...

I knew she had the series, Diana, lol!

Unknown said...

Thank you so much for shedding some light on who she is, Monty! I've been really wondering because I had never heard of her before this tournament. Thanks again, and she really is pretty, too!

Patti said...

I'm with Desiree...I never heard of Diana either. Of course, with Bette as my #1 gal, I'm hoping the Cinderella run is over.

Anonymous said...

I love to learn new stuff -- I had no idea that Diana Rigg wasn't the first and only Emma Peel, I never knew that James Bond got married, and I didn't realize that she was in Doctor Who. This new knowledge will last me through the weekend! Enjoyed your post!

Silver Screenings said...

Thanks for the overview of Diana Rigg's career. I really didn't know much about her, except for her role in "The Avengers".

Zoggel Down Under said...

Monty, as an 11 yearold I fell in love with this lady, that was 50 years ago. Thanks for the bio. I never realised she and I share the same birthday.


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