Image of Raquel Welch

Raquel Welch

More a sex goddess than an actress, the statuesque Raquel Welch was one of the most popular celebrities of the 1960s and 1970s. While she appeared in dozens of films, they earned little notice, her success depending almost exclusively on her stature as a buxom pin-up. Born Raquel Tejada on September 5, 1940, in Chicago, she began taking dancing lessons as a child and by her teens was already winning beauty contests. At the age of 18, she married high school sweetheart James Welch; the couple had two children before divorcing in 1961. After working in Dallas, TX, as a waitress and model, Welch relocated to Hollywood in 1963; within three days, she had already landed a manager, Patrick Curtis, and soon they formed a promotions company, Curtwell Enterprises. After appearing in Life magazine in a revealing bikini, she began working on the ABC series Hollywood Palace, and in 1964 made her feature debut with an unbilled appearance in the Elvis Presley vehicle Roustabout. Welch next appeared as a prostitute in 1964's A House Is Not a Home, followed by another uncredited appearance a year later in Do Not Disturb. In 1965, she scored her first lead role in the pop musical A Swingin' Summer, resulting in a contract with 20th Century Fox, which cast her in the sci-fi hit Fantastic Voyage before loaning her to the British horror studio Hammer. There she starred in a 1967 remake of One Million Years B.C.; clad in little more than strategically placed strips of fur, Welch's publicity stills appeared everywhere, and she became a major sex symbol -- still, few went to actually see the movie itself. Despite the publicity, Fox was clearly wary of her talents, and did not ask her to return to Hollywood; instead she remained in Europe, starring with Edward G. Robinson and Vittorio de Sica in 1968's The Biggest Bundle of Them All and with Monica Vitti and Claudia Cardinale in Le Fate. While in Paris, Welch and manager Curtis married, issuing a series of provocative wedding night publicity photos. After appearing as Lust incarnate in Stanley Donen's seven-deadly-sins comedy Bedazzled, Welch finally returned to the U.S. Fox used her judiciously in pictures like the 1968 James Stewart Western Bandolero! and the Frank Sinatra mystery Lady in Cement. Following in 1969 was 100 Rifles, a controversial Western which paired Welch with Jim Brown, and a year later she earned her first real starring role in the disastrous Myra Breckenridge. Her situation was unusual; she was certainly a star and a household name, yet few people ever went to see her movies -- neither 1971's Hannie Caulder nor the following year's Fuzz did anything to alter the dilemma, and when the 1973 roller-derby melodrama Kansas City Bomber also tanked at the box office, Welch divorced Curtis and returned to Europe to appear in Bluebeard. While both 1973's The Three Musketeers and its sequel The Four Musketeers were well received, she earned little credit for their success, and when the 1976 black comedy Mother, Jugs and Speed failed, Hollywood largely washed their hands of her. Welch instead turned to nightclubs, concert stages, and television; she also continued making films in Europe, including 1977's The Prince and the Pauper and L' Animal, co-starring Jean-Paul Belmondo. In 1980, she was tapped to star in Cannery Row, but was fired a month into production; she filed suit against MGM for damages, and was awarded 11 million dollars. Welch spent the entirety of the 1980s away from theaters, focusing primarily on television productions like 1982's The Legend of Walks Far Woman and 1987's Right to Die, in which she delivered one of her strongest performances as a woman suffering from Lou Gehrig's disease. After an absence of over a decade, in 1994 Welch returned to cinema in the comedy The Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult. Throughout the decade, she also made a number of infomercials and exercise videos, and in 1995 also starred in the short-lived nighttime soap opera CPW. In 1997, she took over for Julie Andrews in the troubled Broadway musical Victor/Victoria, which closed less than a month after Welch's debut performance. ~ Jason Ankeny, Rovi

Sep 5, 1940 In Chicago, Illinois, USA
Movie/TV Credits:
Pierwszy Pojawił:
In the movie The Sea of Grass 1947-04-25
Najnowszy projekt:
Film House of Versace 2013-10-04
Known For
Poster of Tortilla Soup
Poster of Tainted Blood
Poster of Crossed Swords
Poster of Spara forte, più forte, non capisco
Film House of Versace Lucia 2013-10-04
Seria The Captain Charlene Van Ark 2008-02-04
Film Forget About It Christine DeLee 2006-10-14
Film Jim Brown: All-American Herself 2002-01-01
Seria 8 Simple Rules Unknown 2002-09-17
Film Cleopatra: The Film That Changed Hollywood Herself (archive footage) 2001-01-01
Film Legalna blondynka Mrs. Windham Vandermark 2001-07-13
Film Tortilla Soup Hortensia 2001-08-21
Film Get Bruce! Herself 1999-01-01
Seria The Early Show Unknown 1999-11-01
Film Chairman of the Board Grace Kosik 1998-03-13
Seria The View Unknown 1997-08-11
Film Sex, Censorship and the Silver Screen Narrator 1996-01-01
Seria E! True Hollywood Story Unknown 1996-03-29
Seria Spin City Unknown 1996-09-17
Seria Central Park West 1995-09-13
Film Flesh and Blood: The Hammer Heritage of Horror herself 1994-08-06
Film Flesh and Blood: The Hammer Horror Heritage Herself 1994-08-06
Film Tainted Blood Elizabeth Hayes 1993-08-24
Seria Seinfeld Unknown 1989-07-05
Film Scandal in a Small Town 1988-01-01
Film Breaking Up Is Hard to Do herself 1988-01-01
Film Right to Die Emily Bauer 1987-08-12
Seria Wogan Unknown 1982-05-04
Film The Legend of Walks Far Woman 1982-05-30
Seria Wetten, dass..? Unknown 1981-02-14
Seria Mork & Mindy Unknown 1978-09-14
Film Crossed Swords Lady Edith 1977-06-02
Film L'Animal Jane Gardner 1977-10-05
Film Mother, Jugs & Speed Jugs 1976-01-01
Seria The Muppet Show Unknown 1976-09-18
Seria Donny & Marie Unknown 1976-01-23
Film The Wild Party Queenie 1975-03-01
Seria Cher Unknown 1975-02-16
Seria Saturday Night Live Unknown 1975-10-11
Film Czterej muszkieterowie Constance de Bonancieux 1974-10-31
Film The Last of Sheila Alice 1973-06-14
Film The Three Musketeers Constance de Bonancieux 1973-12-11
Film Fuzz Det. Eileen McHenry 1972-07-14
Film Kansas City Bomber K.C. Carr 1972-08-02
Film Bluebeard Magdalena 1972-09-01
Film The Beloved Elena 1971-01-01
Film Hannie Caulder Hannie Caulder 1971-11-08
Film Myra Breckinridge Myra Breckinridge 1970-06-24
Film 100 karabinów Sarita 1969-03-26
Seria Bracken's World Unknown 1969-09-19
Film Flareup Michele 1969-11-10
Film The Magic Christian Priestess of the Whip 1969-12-12
Seria Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In Unknown 1968-01-22
Film The Biggest Bundle of Them All Juliana 1968-01-17
Film Bandolero! Maria Stoner 1968-06-01
Film Lady in Cement Kit Forrest 1968-11-19
Film Le plus vieux métier du monde Nini 1967-04-21
Film Bedazzled Lust 1967-10-30
Film Fathom Fathom Harvill 1967-12-13
Film Fantastic Voyage Cora 1966-08-24
Film Le fate Elena 1966-09-14
Film One Million Years B.C. Loana 1966-12-30
Film Spara forte, più forte, non capisco Tania Montini 1966-10-26
Seria The Rogues Miss France 1964-09-13
Seria Wendy and Me Unknown 1964-09-14
Film A House Is Not a Home Call Girl 1964-08-12
Film Roustabout Dusch Girl 1964-11-11
Seria The Baileys of Balboa Unknown 1964-09-24
Seria Bewitched Unknown 1964-09-17
Seria Shindig! Unknown 1964-09-16
Seria The Virginian Unknown 1962-09-19
Seria The Academy Awards Unknown 1953-03-18
Seria Today Unknown 1952-01-14
Film The Sea of Grass Constance de Bonancieux 1947-04-25