Movies

Remembering Zsa Zsa Gabor

Legendary Hollywood actress famous for her glamour and multiple marriages dies at 99

Zsa Zsa Gabor, who parlayed beauty, glamour and nine marriages into a long celebrity career, died on Sunday at 99.

Mr Edward Lozzi, her long-time publicist, said the Hungarian-born actress died in her Los Angeles home after years of decline and illness.

She would have turned 100 in February.

The cause of death was heart failure, Mr Lozzie said.

Born Sari Gabor into a rich family, she was named Miss Hungary in the 1930s.

When World War II approached, she and her sisters headed to the US, leaving her first husband Burhan Belge, a Turkish diplomat.

With her two sisters Eva and Magda, she became a fixture on Hollywood's social circuit in her prime. The siblings were like the Kardashians of their day

Eva died in 1995 and Magda in 1997.

Gabor was once branded "the most expensive courtesan since Madame de Pompadour", but she insisted only her marriage to husband No. 2, hotel mogul Conrad Hilton, was financially motivated.

In fact, marriage could have been the Gabor family business and she the company's CEO.

Her nine marriages topped the five by Eva, who starred in the 1960s sitcom Green Acres, and the six of Magda, whose Hollywood career was based on being the third Gabor sister.

While her acting skills were rarely lauded, Gabor carved out a career in her early days in Hollywood.

Her finest film roles came with Moulin Rouge, where she earned good reviews, in 1952 and Lili in 1953.

She appeared in more than 30 movies and by the 70s, she began to reject smaller roles, saying: "I may be a character but I do not want to be a character actress."

Gabor eventually ended up in low-budget films with such titles as Queen Of Outer Space and Picture Mommy Dead.

'DAH-LING'

Greater success came with nightclub and TV appearances where she disclosed she called everyone "dah-ling" because she could not remember names well, and she relied on self-parodying jokes based on her marriages, haughty demeanour and taste for opulence.

"I am a marvellous housekeeper. Every time I leave a man, I keep his house," she was quoted as saying.

In 1989, Gabor's temper landed her in jail for three days after she slapped a policeman who had stopped her car due to an expired license tag and possessing an open container of alcohol.

She emerged from jail complaining about the food. "Zsa Zsa did not suffer fools well," said Mr Lozzi, who represented her during that period.

"Her beautiful lips and mouth would also be her worst enemy when and if she turned on the verbal machine gun." - REUTERS

hollywoodcelebritiesentertainment