UnNews:KISS bandleader Jean Simmons overwhelmed by renewed public interest

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19 April 2006

Jean simmons
Jean Simmons in full KISS regalia.

Two-time Oscar-nominee Jean Simmons has heard her name mentioned a number of times as of late, and she is the first to admit incredulity and surprise.

"I don't know what all the fuss is about," the star of "Hamlet" and "Elmer Gantry" said in a completely fictional interview by telephone. "Unless it was my appearance last year in 'Howl's Moving Castle.'"

The still beautiful septuagenarian did not actually appear in the English-language version of the Japanese film, as it is animated, but she did provide the voice of the main character, a girl cursed to live out her childhood as an old woman with a hump.

Simmons moved to Hollywood from Great Britain where she notoriously led a cheesy 1970s rock band infamous for its use of fake blood and pyrotechnics more than its music. Her prehensile tongue wowed fans and disgusted parents for more than a decade.

She went on to appear on an episode of "Star Trek: The Next Generation," though surprisingly not in an alien role.

"I hear rumors that there is a new perfume with my name on it," the elegant actress said, "but if that is true, why am I wearing Black Narcissus?"

Readers familiar with Simmons' career will recall that she starred in the Powell-Pressburger technicolor masterpiece named after the mysterious perfume in 1947.

Despite a decade's-long career, many feel that Simmons has not received the recognition she deserves. "I saw her four years ago outside the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood, and at first I didn't even know who she was without the KISS makeup," a friend of this reporter said. "It's terrific that she is being remembered now, even though she has chosen to cover up her hairy chest."

"I only hope the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences finally admits her to the Rock 'n Roll Hall of Fame," he said.

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