She took off her clothing only once for a film role, and that when she was 47 years old, in Gypsy Moths.

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Of course she really could not have done much nudity when she was younger, because there simply was none to speak of for mainstream actresses before 1965, when she was already in her mid 40s.

She was possibly the most distinguished actress of the 1950s. From 1950 until 1961, a span of twelve years, she was nominated for the Best Actress Oscar six times, including three in a row. In the 1957-59 period, she received acting honors for four different films: The King and I; Heaven Knows, Mr. Allison; Separate Tables; Tea and Sympathy. The first three earned her Oscar nominations and the other earned her BAFTA and NYFC nominations.

Despite the esteem in which she was held, she never won any of those Oscars. She remains to this day the record-holder for the most Best Actress nominations without a win. (Glenn Close has been nominated for seven Oscars without a win, but several of those were in the Best Supporting Actress category.)

It’s too bad that Kerr had to wind down her distinguished career in this cheesy, old-fashioned melodrama with a plot and pace better suited for a few weeks of Days of Our Lives. It pushes the usual 1950s theme of local home-spun values contrasted to the free and modern thinking of the outside world, as symbolized by traveling performers. Burt Lancaster typically delivers all of his lines as if he were a professor lecturing a required freshman oratory class in a large auditorium, and Scott Wilson is so laid-back that he may actually have been sleepwalking. Gene Hackman does manage to deliver a performance in the realistic, modern style, but that alone couldn’t hold my attention.

4 thoughts on “Deborah Kerr topless

    1. I was not aware of the marketing of the film at the time, but I have read that it was a key marketing point whenever Kerr and Lancaster reunited (they were both in Separate Tables as well), and this time was special because they had a sex scene. I’m willing to bet that this was billed as the love scene you couldn’t see in From Here to Eternity.

  1. Scoop, you said once that this scene featured a body double (booty.) I’m glad to see you changed your mind. If you like Ms. Kerr you should google her acceptance of the Oscar for lifetime achievement. It was a beautiful moment, but she is not well. I believe she suffered from Parkinson’s. She did not seem bitter about not getting a real Oscar, but she had ever right to be.

  2. I believe it is well known that she used a body double for her butt. According to the story, she chickened out at the last minute.

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