A Canadian news report from a couple of months ago, as Annette was "celebrating" her 70th birthday.
Warning: When they finally show Annette today, it will shock you.
(Her husband set it up. But nothing from her kids - wonder why?)
Also - Shelly Fabares looks amazing. She has freaky pink hair, but she's lookin' good.
I wonder if it's really what she would want. Shelley says yes, but I don't know. I wonder if the kids are horrified and that's why they didn't appear.
She's basically a vegetable. That's no kind of life. This is just awful.
Is it in the video??? Can't find it
Oh my god, that poor woman. Her husband never should have allowed this.
Is what in the video, r5? Annette now? The first five minutes or so is a recap of her career, then they do the "reveal" of Annette today - it's truly awful.
This is horrifying, and I, too, have to question whether a vain actor who voluntarily stepped out of the public eye at the first signs of MS would've wanted to be showboated in such a fashion.
She didn't step out of the public eye at the first signs, r8. For about ten years she was out and open about it, and appeared as herself in the prologue and epilogue of the TV movie about her. But then she began to deteriorate more and more, and that's when she "disappeared."
The interview says she hasn't spoken for three years. I think she'd be horrified at being paraded around by her husband.
How can she possibly make any decisions for herself? This is awful.
[quote]How can she possibly make any decisions for herself? This is awful.
Because maybe she talked it over with her family before the disease progressed so far. She didn't hide it. She was on ET showing her shaking, she wanted to inform. Maybe she wanted people to see what it does to people and not be ashamed of it. She has lived with this since the late eighties.
Yes but most people have the luxury of changing their minds about things and making suggestions. She might have talked things over ages ago, but she might be sick of it by now.
I still think it's telling that, with such a long two-part interview, none of her children spoke.
So sad. My first gayboy diva crush. Her husband seems like a saint.
Yes, that man is amazing. They were not married too long when she was diagnosed. He could have put her in an institution but he has stood by her. I can't speak for her, but I think she lost any vanity long ago and always seems like she wanted to help others avoid her pain. Don't get the FDA against unblocking veins, no matter what reason. Veins are there for a purpose and not supposed to be blocked. I can't see that procedure being anything but positive for health.
What a terrible existence. He says she thanks him with her eyes, but maybe she's telling him to help her end it. Just tragic.
Annette was the first celebrity with MS to go public to raise awareness of the disease and its progression. So sad to see the state of her condition today. I know someone with this disease and its slow progression is a cruel torture. Unlike breast cancer, there has a been an unusually slow development of treatment. Another disease that affects women that was pushed to the background for way too many years.
I agree, r17. That's horrifying.
I just saw her and Frankie on Pee Wee's Xmas special.
Truly devastating to see her now. She must have OK'd something that gave her husband permission to show her in this advanced state - or her children would have stepped in and said no. What good comes of showing her like this ? Is there a foundation in her name people can contribute to ? Otherwise, I think this is very cruel. I had wondered for years what her condition was like at this stage - now I'm sorry I saw that. God bless that poor woman
What's especially harrowing is that she looked fantastic and vibrant for a long time.
She is one of the nicest people in Hollywood. Very sad that she is suffering.
My Mom has MS, but thankfully it isn't a very aggressive type. She told me that the people in the waiting room make her so sad when she sees her MS doctor. The doctor told her that in recent years she is seeing more and more blacks with it, it's starting to devastate that community and yet you never hear about it.
MS -- I guess they still don't know what causes it, or why black people now get it.
Recently, I watched my DVD of Troop Beverly Hills. That film came out in 1989 and had Frankie and Annette jog through their cameo. It was just a few years later that the film about her MS appeared on TV and we see her at the end already ravaged by the disease.
So quick -- so sad.
I think the term "hell on earth" applies here.
The poor woman! When I saw this I cried. I don't know why anyone thinks someone would want to live like this. I think it is a very cruel trick of nature that she has not died. She basically has no life.
She's unrecognizable. Poor woman.
Her husband calls her "baby." And that she is; a helpless adult infant. I guess he truly cares for her, but I think it would be more humane if her life was brought to an end. Unable to move, unable to speak...that's no life. It seems to me that would be a hell on earth.
MS does not = dementia. Annette is most likely fully their mentally. Advanced MS is like locked in syndrome. That is to say she knows exactly what is going on around her. I did not watch long enough to know if she can communicate with her husband by blinking.
In persistant vegetative states while someone can even walk, they don't know who they are, what they are, where the are, what food is- anything. They are more or less like a rock.
Annette F. is most likely fully conscious of everything around her and what is being done for her. She probably can watch TV and follow it all. I did not watch long enough to see if she can chew and swallow, but she may be able to do that and enjoy meals. And certainly she feels the love of her husband, who is one wonderful fellow.
Don't mix up her condition or someone with advanced ALS with persistant vegetative state or brain death.
A friend's wife had MS for many, many years. He took care of her my himself, even eventually using a feeding tube. But, she could talk up until the end. I visited, never saw her...but listened to the conversations with her husband. After she died I asked her husband about the feeding tube. He said, 'That was his choice.' He's only sixty-nine, and has started to date. His wife died in Dec. 2010.
Heroic on his part.
Annette's son Jackie Gilardi, Jr - is an agent at ICM with his dad, Jack, who is a vice president of the agency. A couple of years ago, Jack was sued by some Canadian beauty queen who claimed he tried to rape her in a limo...
Gina Portman and her husband live in Studio City and hawk Annette's perfume and bears out of their garage.
Jason lives in Oklahoma and is the drummer in a local band.
I do believe Shelly Fabares when she says Annette wanted her condition known in order to raise awareness of MS - Annette's Foundation needs the funds to continue research. Of course, that doesn't mean that we want to see it....
I agree with the above poster that Annette is probably aware of everything around her, but unable to communicate except by blinking her eyes.
Sad....video is hard to watch.
Oh and yes, the research foundation does have a place on the net for donations and information.
[quote]What good comes of showing her like this ?
For education? Did you know MS can do that to a beautiful vibrant body? Most people think it just gives you the shakes. Second, why should they hide her away? She has a disease and absolutely nothing to be ashamed about.
[quote]Gina Portman and her husband live in Studio City and hawk Annette's perfume and bears out of their garage.
She's also the marketing director for an indie-film company in the Valley. The description above made her sound like Erin Moran, one step from being thrown out of the trailer park.
This really depressed me: This is my future, minus the bank account.
Anne Romney is the only person who deserves it.
I have MS. It is not the kind Annette has, but it is bad. The worst parts are that I do not look sick, and I can never make plans, because I never know if I will be up to it.
It is hard enough to get out of bed, go to work, swallow about 50 supplements a day, force myself to work out, and try and sleep as much as I can. The crap treatments they have do not work for me; the side effects are not worth the minimal gain.
I am so grateful for medical marijuana. I would never be able to get out of bed.
I'm so sorry R43, my partner has MS, too. Much of what you described about yourself is him to a T. I didn't want to watch all of that video.
I can't get it to play
I couldn't get the direct video at first but I searched Funicello on that news site and it came up in multi-parts.
[quote]I can't get it to play
It wouldn't play for me in Chrome, but worked fine in IE.
[quote]Shelly Fabares looks amazing.
Amazing in the sense that she's brave enough to forgo plastic surgery, but I wouldn't say she looks particularly good for a 68-year-old. Only 10 years ago she looked terrific:
Annette was a VERY big star with my Italian-American family in Brooklyn. They loved Connie Francis as well, but Annette was especially admired for not de-ethnicizing her last name.
Disney (who thought bikinis were immoral) made her wear one-piece bathing suits in those Beach Party movies, but no matter what she wore, they couldn't hide her big juicy boobs. She was hot.
MAD Magazine used to refer to her as Annette Funnyjello.
Yeah, I realized that after I posted it. I'm an idiot.
Still, I've known many people who look much younger than she does at 68 without plastic surgery.
The [italic]Beach Party[/italic] series was produced by American International, not Disney.
I've never heard a bad word about Annette Funicello, she had a reputation as a lovely person. Nobody deserves this (well okay, maybe Ann Romney. Just a little bit.) but for such an awful thing to happen to a person as good as Annette is truly tragic. Life is not fair.
r51: I know that. But for some reason (maybe she was still under contract to Disney? Not sure), Disney asked her to to nix bikinis.
She owed him her career, and may have been fond of him. And I think her Italian-American family was fairly conservative so that may have factored in.
Who's been dying her hair? I think my aunt uses the same color, Loreal midnight black.
A long time ago comedian Lenny Bruce would refer to Annette as "the Mouseketeer with tits."
I read somewhere that somebody told Annette and instead of being insulted and outraged, she laughed and laughed.
Shelley is married to Mike Farrell, who was a poor replacement for hot Wayne Rogers on M.A.S.H.
Shelley received a new liver back in 2000 after hers was destroyed by hepatitis.
[quote]The Beach Party series was produced by American International, not Disney.
She was always close to Mr Disney, as she referred to him. When she was offered the musical "Beach Party" by AIP, her first non Disney role, she asked his opinion. He said go for it. She promised him she would not wear a bikini and she kept that promise through out the series.
I can get it to play, but there's no video; just audio.
I watched in Firefox and it worked fine. I actually couldn't finish watching it because the sight of Annette today was just too much and it felt ghoulish to see her like that so I had to turn it off.
I watched in Explorer, and the video kicks in about 10-15 seconds after the audio begins.
She should be the poster child for "when bad things happen to good people."
So, did all of the boy Mouseketeers grow up to be Mousekequeers?
Dunno about the originals, but the ones in the remake...
Ryan and Justin, I'm looking at YOU
She was incredibly beautiful and was made for the movies. I don't know why she was typecast for just beach movies. I would have put her in the same league as Natalie Wood and Debbie Reynolds.
[quote] A long time ago comedian Lenny Bruce would refer to Annette as "the Mouseketeer with tits."
[quote] I read somewhere that somebody told Annette and instead of being insulted and outraged, she laughed and laughed.
Do you think she was unaware that she was the mouseketeer with tits? They tried to tamp down her tits when she was very young. It was quite a concern. She received millions of fan letters from boys and a few mentioned the assets they most greatly admired.
She knew she had big tits. But she was a modest person. She didn't where bikinis, she didn't wear plunging necklines, she didn't pose topless. She sure as hell knew she was the mouseketeer with tits.
I think she's up there in the pantheon of people about whom the Datalounge has little bad to say... the Dolly Parton and Elizabeth Montgomery level.
What a cruel disease.
I Googled around and found some answers to several questions:
She was under contract to Disney for her entire teen career. He just loaned her to AIP for the BEACH PARTY movies. All her records were on Disney's Buena Vista label. She was his biggest star and he wasn't stupid. She made him a lot of money. He wasn't about to let her go. It's not all that dissimilar to Howard Hughes' contract with Jane Russell.
Who know what might have happened if Annette had struck out on her own? By the time the Beach Party movies had fizzled out, she was typecast as a virginal 'nice girl' and aside from Julie Andrews and Doris Day, there weren't many places in late-60s Hollywood for that type. She would have had to have gone 'bad' and sexy and I don't think she would have made the leap. Also, she had settled into a comfortable role as wife and mother, and was financially better-than-comfortable.
I always confuse her with Anita Bryant. So I was initially puzzled about why there weren't a bunch of posts from Nelson Muntz.
She was also married to Jack Gilardi for a number of years and he was a very successful agent. I doubt she HAD to work if she didn't want to. Money wasn't a problem.
Sadly Jack was a major asshole
I wonder if she ever longed for more serious roles than she played in those Beach Party movies.
Even Walt Disney, who occasionally produced films with some depth in the 50s and 60s, knew better than to cast her beyond her reach.
As a matter of fact, did she make any films for Disney once she grew up?
She didn't wear bikinis, but she certainly wore a lot of two-piece bathing suits. The white one in the clip at r15 actually accentuates her breasts quite a bit.
Fire did major damage to her home two years ago.
This doesn't look like the home that's in the news report about her.
But I thought the whole point was Disney asked her to promise not to wear bikinis. Either he did no such thing, or she just ignored the old homophobe.
A bikini amply reveals the bellybutton. If it doesn't, it's a two-piece.
I wonder if she would rather be dead?
[quote]A bikini amply reveals the bellybutton.
Frenchman Louis Reard invented the bikini in 1946.
Though there had been evidence of two-piece bathing ensembles for 2000 years, "....his innovation was to reveal the navel."
r84, your grandma's two-piece from 1932 was NOT a bikini.
Every definition for bikini I've been able to Google includes words like "brief" or "scanty" - for both men and women's wear. Even though no specific reference is made to the belly button, it is safe to assume that two-pieces that only show some rib cage skin are not to be considered bikinis.
Even the original 1948 models were scandalously revealing for their era.
[quote]She's basically a vegetable.
Not at all! Annette Funicello is very much conscious, awake and sensitive to the environment around her.She is muscularly and neurologically deprived, which is not the same thing as being considered a "vegetable".
You really need to learn the correct usage of that metaphor.
Agreeing with charlie with a c
That is so sad I can't even express it. That poor woman, What a tragic way to spend the final years of one's life.
Oh, please, R89m, you'd say the same thing about Terry Schiavo.
I wish I hadn't clicked on the link...
So with advanced MS is the mind still fully functional? If that's true, I cannot even imagine having nothing wrong with my mind but being completely paralyzed and unable to talk. My god that is frightening.
That's horrible. I wouldn't want to live like that
Yes, R93 - your body becomes a prison while your mind remains functional. It would actually be a mercy if the brain deteriorated along with the body.
I have a friend who was diagnosed at 23, was in remission for over 20 years, and who now is dealing with full-on symptoms. She has gone from fairly-mobile to wheelchair bound in the past 2 years. She's lost the use of her right leg and her right hand, and says she feels like she is freezing to death by inches. I would not wish MS on my worst enemy, and I really mean that.
Jesus, r95 I guess you answered my question. I feel so very sorry for Annette and anyone else who is trapped in a prison of a body while the mind is still 100% sharp. What a horrifying disease. I think Michelle Obama's father had MS too.
SHE IS ALIVE!
I eat shit.
RE 72 - Thanks for the groovy "Burke's Law" clip. It was shot at the actual Whiskey ( then called Whiskey a Go Go ), on Sunset . Its also where the famous scene in "The Graduate" was shot 4 years later - when the stripper
twirls her tassel on Dustin's head, and Elaine runs out. Also in your clip was the hunky Gary Conway, who'd later be on "Land Of The Giants", and then pose for Playgirl. Yes, I'm OLD.
The mother of some high school friends (twins) had MS. She committed suicide with the full knowledge and consent of her family. She said all along she didn't want to live that way and she was deteriorating fairly rapidly.
Can't they find a way for her to communicate (using her eyes for example)?
I'm sure she does, R101. She probably lets them know when she needs something and they ask her what it is until they get a response. When you take care of someone like they take care of her, you become knowledgeable about her needs.
They should do a Beach reunion picture about this and how Frankie is dealing with Annette in this state. It would be much more profound and powerful than 'Back to the Beach', it would speak to its generation and let us see how the old gang looks in the meantime.
Great idea, R103. Instead of a beach, it can take place on a geriatric ward.
[quote]They should do a Beach reunion picture about this and how Frankie is dealing with Annette in this state. It would be much more profound and powerful than 'Back to the Beach'
"Beach Blanket Blinko"?
My high school World History teacher was cute, funny and loved by all her students. She was probably 27, max. She began to have symptoms and found out she had M.S. So young. So sad.
You may be going to hell, r105, but not before stopping by W&W, if I have anything to say about it.
Agreed, W&W for R105.
Also, a Beach reunion movie about MS is the most hilariously inappropriate thing I've ever heard. It'd be like having Sally Field doing "Gidget gets breast cancer" today.
No, r108 - Sally Field in "Gidget Goes to the Osteopath"!
Hey idiot at 97 - no one said she was dead. The post clearly says she's alive.
Me too R107. W&W for R105.
I'll meet up with the two of you for drinks after we arrive in hell.
No Wit and Wisdom for R105.
Tasteless and disgusting.
[quote]Tasteless and disgusting.
Because here at DL we pride ourselves in only making tasteful and appropriate comments.
Unclench, Belle, and see you in hell
I find it interesting that no US network broadcast this.
How heartbreaking for her and her family. I'm sure her heart of gold is still in top shape though.
It wasn't "tasteless and disgusting", it was worse, it wasn't funny. Shecky Greene has nothing to worry about.
(Had to google whoTF was Shecky Greene)
So r116, the arbiter of funny apparently, uses an old Vegas comedian as a yardstick for funny. Oh r105 must be hurting so.
Another WW for r105, what the HELL
Shecky Greene wasn't funny either....ever.
[quote]Shecky Greene wasn't funny either....ever.
I respectfully disagree. Second funniest comedian (Vegas baby!) with the first being Buddy Hackett.
Thanks for the link R41.
Didn't aim to diss Gina, I was only going by the broken down Toyota they had in front of their house for the last two years.
just saw she dies this morning - obit in the guardian - very sad - what an awful disease MS is...
I really think of her husband as a hero. The man is 81 years old and still taking care of her, amazing. He must love her so much to do that. It would be so easy for him to institutionalize her but he refuses saying he promised he would take care of her, for better or worse. I'm sure that many many things were discussed by Annette and her family when she was still functional. She was a smart lady and I'm sure she covered all the bases with them on all these things since I'm sure they became very eductaed on the progression of this terrible desease. Just aweful the way this illness progresses!