Disney icon and American International starlet, Annette Funicello has passed away due due to complications of Multiple Sclerosis.
Discovered by Walt Disney for the original Mickey Mouse Club that began in 1955, Miss Funicello appeared in several of the Disney movies including Babes in Toyland, The Misadventures of Merlin Jones, The Shaggy Dog and The Parent Trap.
Walt Disney loaned her talents out to the independent company owned by Samuel Z. Arkoff and James Nicholson, American International Pictures, for the now classic Beach Party films under one stipulation. Miss Funicello had to wear a one piece swimsuit in order to preserve her wholesome Dinsey image though the art work on the movie posters has her in a two piece.
Teaming her up with Frankie Avalon, the Beach Party series became an instant success spawning several successful sequels. She also performed in The Monkees' film, Head, with the late Davey Jones in a cameo.
Aside from her film presence, Miss Funicello performed in many televison shows and the iconic Skippy Peanut Butter commercials that introduced her to a whole new generation of young people.
She was the love of many a lad growing up. She’ll always live in our hearts.
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