Celebrity picks for Derby Dead Pool 2004: L


Laine, Frankie (Died in 2007)
Born 30 March 1913  (Chicago, Illinois, USA)
Crooner of Italian origin (real name Frank Paul LoVecchio), who enjoyed huge success in the 1950s, before rock 'n' roll rendered him obsolete. His UK chart records of 18 consecutive weeks at number 1 (with 'I Believe' in 1953) and a total of 27 weeks in the top slot in that year remain unequalled to this day.
[Picture of Frankie Laine]


Langford, Bonnie
Born 22 July 1964  (Hampton Court, Surrey, England)
Squeaky-voiced, lisping child star who won Hughie Green's "Opportunity Knocks" 'talent' contest and became a member of Equity at the age of 6. Went on to tread the boards on Broadway and in the West End by her early teens, and appeared in "Just William" and "Doctor Who". Had a nervous breakdown in the late '80s.
[Picture of Bonnie Langford]


Lansbury, Angela
Born 16 October 1925  (London, England)
British stage and screen actress, who has spent most of her working life in the US, often playing characters much older than herself. Best known as Jessica Fletcher in the long-running TV detective series 'Murder, She Wrote'.
[Picture of Angela Lansbury]


Lauder, Estée Estée Lauder is no longer with us
Born 1 July 1908  (Queens, New York, USA)

Died 25 April 2004  (Manhattan, New York, USA)

Age at death: 95  (read death notice)
Born Josephine Esther Mentzer, the ninth child of a Jewish immigrant family living in New York. Started the cosmetics firm that bears her adopted name in the 1940s.
[Picture of Estée Lauder]


Laughlin, Tom (Died in 2013)
Born 10 August 1931  (Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA)
Actor whose most successful films by far were 'Billy Jack' (1971) and its sequel 'The Trial of Billy Jack' (1974), after which his career bombed. Was credited in films under 9 different aliases, including, bizarrely, Mary Rose Solti. Announced in 1992 that he was going to run for President, but no-one took him seriously.
[Picture of Tom Laughlin]


Lawson, Nigel
Born 11 March 1932  (London, England)
British journalist-turned-MP who went on to become Chancellor of the Exchequer under Margaret Thatcher. After leaving office he was made Lord Lawson of Blaby, and then decided to lose lots of weight, getting his wife Therese to write "The Nigel Lawson Diet Cookbook". Not long afterwards, his daughter Nigella took the wind out of Therese's sails by rising to fame as a rather more popular celebrity chef.
[Picture of Nigel Lawson]


Le Pen, Jean-Marie
Born 20 June 1928  (La Trinité-sur-Mer, Brittany, France)
Founder (and still president) of the right-wing Front National party, who has courted controversy throughout his life. Some of his "achievements" have included practising torture in Algeria (allegedly), and losing his seat in the European Parliament for assaulting a rival socialist candidate during an earlier election campaign.
[Picture of Jean-Marie Le Pen]


Lee, Christopher
Born 27 May 1922  (Belgravia, London, England)
Actor who has appeared in countless cheesy horror films, particularly those made by Hammer during the 1950s-70s. Last seen storming off in a massive huff after discovering that his character, Saruman, had been totally written out of the final instalment of Peter Jackson's "Lord of the Rings" trilogy during post-production.
[Picture of Christopher Lee]


Leeson, Nick
Born 25 February 1967  (Watford, Hertfordshire, England)
Barings Bank trader who, in in the mid-1990s, managed to bankrupt his employers by losing 1.3 billion GBP on the Far Eastern derivatives market. He was convicted of fraud, imprisoned, divorced by his wife, released after 4 years, wrote a book about his experiences (entitled Rogue Trader), contracted cancer, and now works as a 'motivational' after-dinner speaker.
[Picture of Nick Leeson]


Leigh, Janet Janet Leigh is no longer with us
Born 6 July 1927  (Merced, California, USA)

Died 3 October 2004  (Beverly Hills, California, USA)

Age at death: 77  (read death notice)
Actress - Jeanette Helen Morrison by birth - who appeared in over fifty movies, the most famous of which was Hitchcock's "Psycho". She had daughter Jamie Lee Curtis during a short-lived marriage to fellow Dead Pool choice Tony Curtis.
[Picture of Janet Leigh]


Leigh Fermor, Patrick (Died in 2011)
Born 11 February 1915  (London, England)
Travel writer, who has written extensively about Greece after serving behind enemy lines in Crete during World War II. Knighted in the 2004 New Year Honours list.
[Picture of Patrick Leigh Fermor]


Lessing, Doris (Died in 2013)
Born 22 October 1919  (Kermanshah, Persia (now Iran))
Novelist whose works are strongly influenced by politics, psychology and her own upbringing in colonial Africa. She has often been described as a feminist writer, although she shuns this label.
[Picture of Doris Lessing]


Lévi-Strauss, Claude (Died in 2009)
Born 28 November 1908  (Brussels, Belgium)
Anthropologist and all-round intellectual who, in works such as "Anthropologie structurale", developed theories adapted from the structuralist ideas of linguist Ferdinand de Saussure. No relation to that bloke wot invented jeans.
[Picture of Claude Lévi-Strauss]


Lewis, Al (Died in 2006)
Born 30 April 1910  (New York, New York, USA)
Grandpa Munster. Had to have part of his right leg and some toes on his left foot amputated after problems during surgery in 2003.
[Picture of Al Lewis]


Lewis, Jerry
Born 16 March 1926  (Newark, New Jersey, USA)
Actor, writer, director, producer and composer, born Joseph Levitch. Formed a partnership with Dean Martin and made 18 films with him in 10 years, before going on to have his greatest success in 'The Nutty Professor' (1963). Now suffering badly from diabetes and pulmonary fibrosis, and looking increasingly infirm.
[Picture of Jerry Lewis]


Lewis, Jerry Lee
Born 29 September 1935  (Ferriday, Louisiana, USA)
The piano-playing rock-n-roller with balls of fire so great that he married his thirteen-year-old cousin and once turned up at Graceland with a gun, threatening to kill Elvis. He has succeeded in surviving where just about everyone around him has failed: his son was killed in a car crash, his fourth wife drowned in a swimming pool, and his fifth wife died of a drugs overdose. Wonder why his nickname is "The Killer"?
[Picture of Jerry Lee Lewis]


Lilley, Peter
Born 23 August 1943  (Hayes, Kent, England)
Tory politician (currently MP for Hitchin and Harpenden) who served as Secretary of State for Social Security during the John Major years. More recently, following a dismal failure to win his party's leadership, he has called for the legalisation of cannabis. Not known to be ill, but who can tell...
[Picture of Peter Lilley]


Loaf, Meat
Born 27 September 1951  (Dallas, Texas, USA)
Real name Marvin Lee Aday. Although born in Texas - home of Houston, America's fattest city for the third year running - Mr Loaf moved to the West Coast in the 1960s. After appearing in various musicals, including "Hair" (and the movie of "The Rocky Horror Picture Show", alongside Patricia Quinn, Richard O'Brien and Jonathan Adams), he performed vocals on a number of albums before hitting the big time with "Bat Out Of Hell" in 1977. His partnership with Jim Steinman soon deteriorated, along with his career, and by the end of the 1980s he was bankrupt. But by the mid-1990s they'd kissed and made up, releasing the imaginatively titled "Bat Out Of Hell II: Back Into Hell". In 2003 he collapsed on stage at Wembley Arena, and subsequently underwent heart surgery after being diagnosed with Wolff-Parkinson-White Syndrome (an illness in which the patient thinks they are a law firm).
[Picture of Meat Loaf]


Lom, Herbert (Died in 2012)
Born 9 January 1917  (Prague, Bohemia (now Czech Republic))
Actor, born Herbert Charles Angelo Kuchacevich ze Schluderpacheru, but decided that Lom was less of a mouthful, and he may just have been right. Usually played supporting roles, including Peter Sellers' long suffering boss Charles Dreyfus in the Pink Panther movies. Moved into horror films in the 1970s, none of which were particularly memorable.
[Picture of Herbert Lom]


Love, Courtney
Born 9 July 1965  (San Francisco, California, USA)
The original Riot Grrl, who formed Hole after being kicked out of Babes In Toyland. Wife of the late Kurt Cobain, she has had numerous verbal and legal scuffles with his former Nirvana bandmates. When not busy being controversial, she spends her time bringing up her daughter and taking heroin.
[Picture of Courtney Love]


Lovell, Sir Bernard (Died in 2012)
Born 31 August 1913  (Oldland, Gloucestershire, England)
Pioneer of wartime radar and radio astromony. Responsible for the building of the Jodrell Bank radio telescope in Cheshire.
[Picture of Sir Bernard Lovell]


Luger, Lex
Born 2 June 1958  (Chicago, Illinois, USA)
WCW wrestler (real name Lawrence Pfohl), whose finishing move is, apparently, the "Torture Rack". His partner and manager, Miss Elizabeth, was found dead at his home in May 2003; during the subsequent investigation the police found banned bodybuilding drugs on the premises, and he was arrested.
[Picture of Lex Luger]


Born 3 November 1948  (Lennoxtown, Glasgow, Scotland)
Scots pop singer who wisely shortened her name from Marie McDonald McLaughlin Lawrie. Although she had a string of hits in the 1960s, the only one anyone can remember is "Shout". Unless you count the Eurovision entry "Boom Bang-A-Bang". It was only in 1993 that she finally reached No. 1 in the UK, singing "Relight My Fire" with Take That. Does "once being married to Maurice Gibb out of the Bee Gees" make her an appropriate pick for the dead pool?
[Picture of Lulu]


Lumley, Joanna
Born 1 May 1946  (Srinagar, Kashmir, India)
Model-turned-actress who has appeared in countless British TV series, notably "The New Avengers" and, more recently, "Absolutely Fabulous".
[Picture of Joanna Lumley]


Lynn, Dame Vera
Born 20 March 1917  (East Ham, London, England)
A performer from the age of 7, who really made it big during World War II. Her radio programme, 'Sincerely Yours', on which she was both presenter and singer of dreary ballads, made her 'The Forces' Sweetheart'. Ironic, then, that she had her first number 1 hit shortly after the war with a song sung partially in German - 'Auf Wiedersehen, Sweetheart'. Despite this gaffe, she was made a Dame in 1976.
[Picture of Dame Vera Lynn]


Lythgoe, Nigel
Born 9 July 1949  (place of birth unknown)
One-time member of the 1970s dance troupe Young Generation, and now an odious television producer responsible for Pop Idol and its precursor, Popstars, on which he gained notoriety in front of the cameras as "Nasty Nigel". US viewers can blame him for co-producing American Idol. Reported as having only a 50% chance of survival after suffering a heart attack in January 2003.
[Picture of Nigel Lythgoe]


Lyttleton, Humphrey (Died in 2008)
Born 23 May 1921  (Buckinghamshire, England)
Jazz musician and quizmaster on Radio 4's 'Sorry, I Haven't Got A Clue'. Still touring and performing with his band.
[Picture of Humphrey Lyttleton]

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