The United Kingdom's answer to Marilyn Monroe, Diana Dors (born Diana May Fluck) was loved by England's rock musicians. She appeared on the cover of the Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band and the Smiths' 1995 compilation, Singles, and made guest appearances in several videos by Adam Ant, including 1980's "Prince Charming," in which she portrayed his fairy godmother. The Kinks paid homage to her when they included the Ray Davies-penned tribute tune, "Good Day," on their Word of Mouth album.
The daughter of a railroad employee, Dors began her career in film as a teenager. After doing well in local beauty contests, she was invited to join a theatrical group at the age of 13. The following year, she enrolled in the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts, where she was the youngest student in her class. She was initially cast in small sexy roles, including an uncredited appearance in the film The Shops at Sly Corner in early 1947 and in a brief walk-on role in Dancing With Crime a few months later. Although she went on to more fulfilling roles in comedies and dramas of the 1950s, including co-starring with George Gobel in the 1956 flick I Married a Woman, she continued to be primarily cast in supporting roles. She had her greatest success in the 1970s, appearing in The Amorous Milkman, Craze, and Three for All, and as Peter Sellers' ex-wife in There's a Girl in My Soup. Dors also made numerous appearances on British television, including a regular spot on Slim-In, which she shared with the Dors Dozen.
Dors was married three times. Papers for a divorce from her first husband, Dennis Hamilton, had been filed when Hamilton died on January 31, 1959. Her second marriage, to British actor/MC Richard Dawson, later of Family Feud fame, ended in divorce in 1967. Her third marriage was the most tragic. Married to Alan Lake in November 1968, they were forced to separate for a year while Lake served a year in jail (1970-1971) for his role in a pub brawl. Lake committed suicide on October 10, 1984, the 16th anniversary of their meeting.
Shortly after completing her final film, Steaming, in 1982, Dors was diagnosed with cancer. She died two years later on May 11, 1984. ~ Craig Harris