She was celebrated as having the smallest waistline in Hollywood.However, she also was said to suffer from anorexia, and all the outfits she wore in "White Christmas" (including a nightgown) were high-necked--supposedly because her anorexia made her look like she had an elderly woman''s neck. This has been disputed, but what hasn''t been is that she looks incredibly different in this film than she does in "On the Town" just a few years before, when she looked gorgeous and vibrant (in "WC," she looks haggard and drawn).
Every single thing that we are wearing!\
When a certain gentlemen arrived from Rome,\
I wore the dress...\
...and I stayed home!
Sisters, sisters, never were there such devoted sisters!
OP, it''s established that dear Vera-Ellen was anorexic. If some want to called it self-starved but not diagnosed, that''s okay. A perfectionist in a career requiring extreme physical conditioning and who apparently responded to pressure by controlling her weight, and who withdrew completely from public life after personal sadness - hmmm. \
Her condition seems to have fluctuated over time. In some stills in the 1940s she looks fine, and in others she looks scarily thin. Same as in the early 1950s. By "Call Me Madam" and "White Christmas" in 1953-1954 she was way too thin. When she returned to the screen in her last movie in 1957, three years into her second marriage, though, she looked better. She was so small that slight fluctuations in her weight made a big difference in appearance.\
It''s painful to see her vertebrae poking up in "Call Me Madam" like she''s a petite little lizard. Poor thing.
I think it''s "White Christmas" where she''s doing a ballet-style dance and Danny Kaye points to her feet, where we get a close up of her standing pointe (I think that''s what it''s called). Her feet are shaking and she''s almost unable to do it anymore. I never understood why they even kept that scene in.
Please watch something that I think is called Wonder Man, a 1945-ish Danny Kaye vehicle. V-E is the female lead, fresh from Radio City, I guess, and with her original button nose and chubbiness, she is unrecognizable!
R3, that has to be that gruesome MANDY sequence, in that white-faced Minstrel numbo....
For those who want to see what Vera-Ellen looked like.....
Choreography is the beatnik number, at least, it starts that way. \
LOVE White Christmas, but poor Vera''s waist is always just surreal to look at, she''s inhumanly thin.
They''re supposed to be beatniks? Oh my.
Where are the scary pictures of her?
I need to get a life
Why are the old movie stars so tiny?.Women just don''t have the same type of figure nowadays.
"Women just don''t have the same type of figure nowadays."\
Casting directors always search out certain body types, it''s different in every era. Now, the look is underweight with paper-flat abs and big boobs. \
Also, every actress you ever saw onscreen in that era had her waist painfully pulled in; under her clothes was a merry widow, girdle, corset, or cinch belt. It changed their porportions more than you''d think, turned soft women into hourglasses.
My old college professor LOVES Vera-Ellen. This thread would thrill him to no end.
Her dance in "Choreography" is not ballet-inspired or en pointe. She''s doing a fast toe tap while dangling from a lift not pictured in the frame (which she eventually lets go of).\
It starts at 00:26.
That''s not the part I remembered, R19. In fact, now that I''m on a computer where I can see the video, it''s obvious this isn''t the number I was looking for at all. The moment was definitely a very tight closeup of her standing en pointe, white ballet shoes, and the scene cut to someone pointing to her and obviously indicating in a hammy way that she was doing something miraculous.\
Maybe it wasn''t Danny Kaye. Now I''m really embarrassed because I can''t remember what film it was in.
Vera-Ellen became my favorite actress many years ag0> I don't remember at what moment I decided that. Too bad she had to suffer anorexia, because of the pressure to look thin.It happens to a lot of actresses now-for example Leeann Rimes, Lindsay Lohan,Kate Bosworth.
She doesn't look anorexic in any of the photos posted here.
She was no Ana Alicia.
My mother used to brag about her grandmother's 18 inch waistline.
[quote]Rosemary Clooney also had a very small waist in "White Christmas." A few decades later it was like a Mac Truck coming on stage.
I laughed when I read this. But now that I see it's from 2010, I think I may have been R9.