Jane Russell, the voluptuous “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” star who was a pinup girl during World War II, has died. She was 89.
She got her start in Howard Hughes’ film “The Outlaw” in 1943 and went on to worldwide fame. Her last film role was as Alabama Tigress in 1970’s “Darker Than Amber.”
Howard Hughes signed her to a seven-year contract in 1943. It took three years for “The Outlaw” to be released because censors objected to the display of her cleavage.
Over the years, she appeared in “His Kind of Woman,” “The Las Vegas Story,” “Gentlemen Marry Brunettes,” “The Revolt of Mamie Stover,” the flop “The Fuzzy Pink Nightgown,” “Fate Is the Hunter” and “The Born Losers.”
Russell was born Ernestine Jane Geraldine Russell in Bemidji, Minn. Her family later moved to southern California, and as a teen, she performed in plays at Van Nuys High School.
Services are scheduled for 11 a.m. Saturday, March 12, at Pacific Christian Church, 3435 Santa Maria Way, Santa Maria.