Origins: The film rights to Sir James Barrie's tremendously popular stage play (1904) and book (1911) Peter Pan were acquired by Disney in 1939 for
Depicting the character of Tinker Bell in an animated film posed something of a challenge for Disney
Since Peter Pan was released in 1953, just as another curvaceous blonde, Marilyn Monroe, was becoming America's most popular screen actress and sex symbol, it's easy to make the assumption that Tinker Bell was intended to be a Monroesque minx. However, at the time Peter Pan went into production, Marilyn Monroe was not the world famous epitome of the sexy, glamorous 1950s starlet she is now. Although far from unknown, back then Marilyn was still working her way up the Hollywood ladder of stardom in a series supporting roles and bit parts
Kerry's legs had in fact been christened the "Most Beautiful Legs in Hollywood" shortly before "Peter Pan" went into production, a fact she now begrudgingly acknowledges. "Terrible thing! It was a real throwback from the early '30s. But my girlfriend wanted to do it if I'd go, so I did, and I won. She never spoke to me again."
During her audition, Kerry says, it was her pantomime of Tinker Bell standing on a hand mirror sizing up her hips that got her the part. Other scenes such as that of the pixie stuck in a keyhole, hips gratuitously wriggling in a rear-angle shot lent an uncharacteristically saucy element to this Disney classic based on the James M. Barrie
Last updated: 21 August 2007
Canemaker, John and Robert E. Abrams. Treasures of Disney Animation Art. New York: Artabras, 1982. ISBN 0-89660-031-9 (p. 268). Grant, John. Encyclopedia of Walt Disney's Animated Characters. New York: Hyperion, 1993. ISBN 1-56282-904-1 (p. 239-241). Hollis, Richard and Brian Sibley. The Disney Studio Story. New York: Crown Publishers, 1988. ISBN 0-517-57078-5 (p. 63-64). Ridneour, Al. "Tinker Bell's Fairy Godmother." Los Angeles Times. 19 February 2002 (p. E2). Smith, Dave. Disney A to Z: The Official Encyclopedia. New York: Hyperion, 1996. ISBN 0-7868-6223-8 (p. 499).