"Nowadays everyone is asking me about the pressure to look good," she says. I don't want to be a different age than I am." The Kansas-born star credits that sense of security to a happy childhood.
From day one both her insurance broker father and her mother did all they could to encourage her.
From early childhood she had wanted nothing more than to become a mum.
47 40413744 E-mail: pamela [email protected] George Director Uganda Film and Television Institute.
If those who have worked with her are to be believed, Annette has little in common with her onscreen personas.
In the movie she plays fiery moll Virginia Hill, who captured the mobster's heart.
And in a high-profile case of life imitating art, the iconic Mr Beatty, who had something of reputation for womanising, fell head over heels with his co-star.
It was while working at the city's American Conservatory Theatre that the aspiring thesp met her first husband J Steven White.
Two years later their marriage was on the rocks, however, and Annette, then 28, decided to pack her bags and head for the Big Apple.
There, a Broadway production of earned her a Tony award, and the young actress decided to capitalise on her new-found renown by making the break into movies.
From that point on her career went from strength to strength, but Annette's greatest aspiration remained unfulfilled.
Funicello gained early fame as an actress on Walt Disney's She landed a part on the show, which premiered in October 1955, when Funicello was just 13 years old, and soon became the series' the most popular "Mouseketeer." Audiences regularly tuned in to watch Funicello and other members of the children's variety show perform song and dance routines in turtle-neck sweaters displaying their names in big block letters, blue skirts/slacks and, most notably, mouse-eared beanies.
The actress would later credit the show as her claim to fame and an incredible learning experience, and call Walt Disney her "second father." She once stated, "I've always found Mr.
Funicello became a spokesperson for Skippy peanut butter and was later diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, campaigning for increased awareness and research on the disease.