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Annette Funicello

Annette Funicello

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Recent DVDs

Muscle Beach Party ... Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello star in Muscle Beach Party as fun-loving... more info $14.35was $24.95 Buy Now

Beach Blanket Bingo ... Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello are back on the beach in Beach Blanket... more info $13.95was $24.95 Buy Now

How to Stuff a Wild Bikini ... While Frankie (Avalon) is off in the Navy, he enlists the help of a witch doctor... more info $11.45was $19.98 Buy Now

The Shaggy Dog / The Shaggy... The Shaggy Dog the first live-action movie ever produced by Walt Disney is on... more info $11.95was $14.99 Buy Now

The Shaggy Dog ... Wilby Daniels (Tommy Kirk) is just an ordinary teenager until a magical ring... more info $8.95was $9.99 Buy Now

The Best of the Mickey Mouse... Join Annette, Bobby, Jimmie, Roy, Cheryl, Cubby and the rest of the Mouseketeers... more info $6.95was $6.25 Buy Now

Also Known As: Annette Joanne Funicello Died:
Born: October 22, 1942 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Utica, New York, USA Profession: actor, singer

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Before Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake and Christina Aguilera, there was Annette Funicello, the original Mouseketeer. When she burst out on the scene as the bubbly girl-next-door on "The Mickey Mouse Club" (ABC, 1955-59), America quickly fell in love with Funicello, making her one of the most recognized faces on television at that time. She was such a huge success on the show that by the end of the first season, the actress was receiving about 6,000 fan letters a week, a feat that astounded even Walt Disney himself. She re-emerged in the 1960s as a teen icon, starring in several "beach party" movies like "Beach Blanket Bingo" (1965) opposite fellow idol Frankie Avalon, and would later inspire longtime fans with her courageous battle against the debilitating disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), which led to her death in April 2013. However, it was her warm, all-American persona as a Mouseketeer - her name famously embossed across her Disney sweater - that would be the Annette Funicello fans remembered best.

Before Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake and Christina Aguilera, there was Annette Funicello, the original Mouseketeer. When she burst out on the scene as the bubbly girl-next-door on "The Mickey Mouse Club" (ABC, 1955-59), America quickly fell in love with Funicello, making her one of the most recognized faces on television at that time. She was such a huge success on the show that by the end of the first season, the actress was receiving about 6,000 fan letters a week, a feat that astounded even Walt Disney himself. She re-emerged in the 1960s as a teen icon, starring in several "beach party" movies like "Beach Blanket Bingo" (1965) opposite fellow idol Frankie Avalon, and would later inspire longtime fans with her courageous battle against the debilitating disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), which led to her death in April 2013. However, it was her warm, all-American persona as a Mouseketeer - her name famously embossed across her Disney sweater - that would be the Annette Funicello fans remembered best.

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

3.
 Troop Beverly Hills (1989) Herself
4.
 Back To The Beach (1987) Annette
5.
 Head (1968) Minnie
6.
 Thunder Alley (1967) Francie Madsen
7.
 Fireball 500 (1966) Jane Harris
8.
 Ski Party (1965) Uncredited appearance
9.
 Beach Blanket Bingo (1965) Dee Dee
10.
 How to Stuff a Wild Bikini (1965) Dee Dee
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1955:
Original cast member of the the Mickey Mouse Club
:
Asked to leave the Mouseketeers when she hit puberty
1957:
Feature acting debut, "Johnny Tremain"
1957:
Played exchange student Gina, "The Danny Thomas Show"
:
Regular on an adventure series, "Zorro"
1958:
Star of own shortlived series, "Annette"
1959:
Played role of Gina Minelli, an Italian exchange student rooming with protagonist Danny Williams's family, for a season of the long-running sitcom, "Make Room for Daddy/The Danny Thomas Show"
1963:
First pairing with Frankie Avalon, "Beach Party"
1987:
In first feature following 19 year break she is reunited with Avalon in sleeper hit, "Back to the Beach"
1989:
Last feature appearance, "Troop Beverly Hills"
1992:
Publicly admitted having multiple sclerosis since 1987
1993:
Received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame
1994:
Co-wrote autobiography, "A Dream Is a Wish Your Heart Makes"
1995:
Made cameo appearance in the TV movie adaptation of her autobiography
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Notes

Funicello collects teddy bears and created The Annette Funicello Teddy Bear Company to market a line of designer bears

She also has her own fragrance "Cello, by Annette". Proceeds from the sale of the perfume go to her foundation

Companions close complete companion listing

husband:
Jack Gilardi. Manager. Married in 1965; divorced in 1981.
husband:
Glen Holt. Racehorse breeder. Born in 1930; married in 1986.

Family close complete family listing

father:
Joseph Funicello.
mother:
Virginia Funicello.
daughter:
Gina Gilardi. Marketing executive. Born c. 1966; married to businessman Jack Portman.
son:
Jack Gilardi. Born c. 1970.
son:
Jason Gilardi. Born on October 21, 1974.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

Bibliography close complete biography

"A Dream Is a Wish Your Heart Makes"

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