Rock Hudson
Day, who co-starred with 1950s and 1960s superstars such as Rock Hudson and Cary Grant
  • Her shiny girl-next-door image was built on a series of innocent romantic comedies.
  • Former Beatle Paul McCartney said Day was a “true star” who had “a heart of gold”.
  • We will miss her beautiful smile.

Actress Doris Day, who became one of the greatest box-office attractions of her time, died on Monday at the age of 97, her foundation said.

Day, who co-starred with 1950s and 1960s superstars such as Rock Hudson and Cary Grant, died at her Carmel, California home after a bout with pneumonia, the Doris Day Animal Foundation said on its website.

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Her shiny girl-next-door image was built on a series of innocent romantic comedies, including Pillow Talk, for which Day received an Oscar nomination, That Touch of Mink and The Thrill of It All.

Day also had hit records, most notably Que Sera, Sera from the movie The Man Who Knew Too Much. It became her theme song, even though she had initially been reluctant to record it.

Day’s life was not always as sunny as her movie roles. She married four times, was divorced three times and widowed once, suffered a nervous breakdown and had severe financial trouble after one husband squandered her money.

“My public image is unshakably that of America’s wholesome virgin, the girl next door, carefree and brimming with happiness,” she said in a memoir, “an image, I can assure you, more make-believe than any film part I ever played. But I am Miss Chastity Belt and that’s all there is to it.”

Tributes to her memory poured in from fellow entertainment giants.

Former Beatle Paul McCartney said Day was a “true star” who had “a heart of gold”.

“I will miss her but will always remember her twinkling smile and infectious laugh,” McCartney said on his website.

“She was a wonderful friend to us and a lovely and very talented lady,” singer Tony Bennett said on Twitter. “We will miss her beautiful smile.”

 

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