Monday, December 6, 2010

Happy Birthday Janine (Turner)!

Juliette & Mom



With a younger Juliette


Today it is my great pleasure to give happy birthday wishes to one of my favorite actresses, the lovely Ms. Janine Turner!
Janine Loraine Gauntt was born in Lincoln, Nebraska, the healthiest city in the United States in 2008. Her mom, dad, and brother were all born in Texas, and she was raised in Euless, Texas (a suburb of Fort Worth. She lives today on her own working cattle ranch outside Colleyville, Texas, which is also a suburb of Fort Worth, which tells us two things about Janine. She must have been born on a layover, or something in Nebraska while trying to get back to Texas, and she doesn't get around much). Her mother Janice was, or is a real estate agent... (no one knows for sure, not even Janine), and her dad, Turner M. Gauntt, was a graduate of West Point, and a pilot for Braniff Airlines for 30 years. She has an older brother, Tim.
Janine was another ballet girl. She also studied tap dancing (as did I), and theater, and modeling at the ripe old age of 3. She was a cheerleader in her teens (as was I), and moved with her mom to New York to study at the Professional Children's School. At age 15 she was noticed by, and became the youngest model signed by the famed Wilhelmina Agency, where Pam Dawber of "Mork and Mindy," fame once worked, the actress Jessica Lange, Sela Ward, Jessica Simpson, Angelica Huston, Beyoncé, Fergie, and a whole bunch of others nice people. But after appearing in a few commercials she returned to school in Texas.
Where the popular prime time soap opera, "Dallas," was being filmed on location, where Janine found some work in minor roles.
This led her to Los Angeles, and at age 17 she won the part of Laura Templeton on a daytime soap opera, the popular "General Hospital." She also worked on "Another World."
At age 20 she appeared in her first movie, 1982's "Young Doctor's in Love," a Gary Marshall comedy, parodying shows like, well "General Hospital." She along with other soap actors played in cameos.
Now I remember this film, and liked it. I even remember two lines from it quite clearly. The first was after the two leads, the lovely Sean Young and Michael McKean, both a hell of a lot younger than they are now, finished "doing it," in a operating room theater, where one of them said something about having just made love.
"You call that making love?!" shouts a nonchalant Harry Dean Stanton, who had been sitting in one of the theater seats quietly appraising the display from above.
And a scene in which a professionally dressed young man is telling a very attractive young woman (who appears to be putting her clothes back on) in a doctor's office this: "I've examined your legs, your back, your face, in fact I've examined every part of your body."
"Well, what's the matter with me doctor?" the young lady asks.
"How should I know? I'm a lawyer."
However, I do not remember Janine. I will have to watch this film once again soon.
Like my former lovely case manager, Michele, Janine attended Pepperdine University in nearby Malibu by the sea, but left when she got her first major motion picture role in the film adaptation of my favorite novel of James Clavell, "Tai-Pan," a story of Hong Kong. She played the lovely southern temptress, Shevaun Tillman, but I do not remember her from this film, probably because I disliked the whole movie to begin with, believing it came no where near doing Clavell's epic the justice it deserved. I am going to watch it again though, am downloading as I type this as a matter of fact. We shall see. I certainly want to see Janine, and might think better of the whole movie.
Probably not.
It should have been a mini series.
Four years later she got the role of her life as Mary Margaret O’Connell, an Alaskan bush pilot in the quirky prime time comedy, "Northern Exposure," with Rob Morrow, and a host of other quirky characters. It was an ensemble show actually based primarily around Rob's Dr. Joel Fleischman. A fish out of water story really, of a young doctor getting tricked into opening up a practice in a small isolated town in Alaska. Here's a clip:
Janine would appear in 110 episodes from 1990 to 1995, and become a house hold name.
The show was actually filmed in Washington State, so Janine could hardly see Russia from her house, but she took on a decidedly conservative bent, and has since campaigned for Sarah Palin, has appeared on Fox "News," ironically complaining about the liberal media, and with her lovely daughter Juliette, has founded the conservative organization Constituting America, it's goal to teach Americans about the United States Constitution, most assuredly through a conservative perspective, which usually means those things occurring that conservatives do not agree with are inherently unconstitutional, while all of those they do agree with, even if they don't actually appear in the document, like the country was really founded on Christian principles, is okay and implicit in the Constitution.
But this is not the place to quibble about ideology. Today we are celebrating this lovely and strong woman's life and birthday.
Janine would go on making films, appearing as June Cleaver, in a film version of "Leave it to Beaver," and another helicopter pilot in the cliffhanger adventure thriller, "Cliffhanger, with Sylvester Stallone.
In 2004 she wrote and directed "Trip in a Summer Dress," a film about a strong-willed mother and her children. She is an author, writing and publishing "Holding Her Head High: Inspiration from 12 Single Mothers Who Championed Their Children and Changed History."
And apparently she raises freaking Longhorn cows. Well one's got to do something I suppose.
I applaud Janine for her beauty, talent, the courage of her convictions, her strength and compassion, and everyone her at Joyce's Take wish her, Juliette, and anyone else she may happened to meet and love, continued good health and success, and a very happy birthday!
Happy Birthday Janine!

1 comment:

  1. She is the most beautiful woman in the world.