The Actress Whose Career Was Killed By The Oscars Speaks Out
Maybe you don't remember what happened on the Academy Awards stage on March 29, 1989, but a once aspiring ingénue named Eileen Bowman will never be able to forget it. It was the night that defined her acting career, and sunk her Hollywood dreams it in one fell swoop.
It was the 61st Annual Academy Awards, and Bowman was set to make her screen debut in front of all of Hollywood's brightest stars as well as a national television audience. It seemed a huge opportunity, a chance to become a star! She was to play Snow White opposite post-sex scandal Rob Lowe, playing Prince Charming. Together the two sang and danced through a 15-minute number that has gone down as one of the worst in Oscar history. Refresh your memory below, thanks to this montage from THR.
Even in these snippets, this glitzy and garish number is hard to watch. Now remember, it went on like this for 15 full minutes, which included a portion where Bowman ran into the audience of Hollywood stars and entreated them to join in the, um, fun. Afterwards, 17 Hollywood heavyweights - including Billy Wilder and Paul Newman - publicly denounced the production in an open letter calling it "an embarrassment to both the Academy and the entire motion picture industry." Ouch. The whole thing went over so badly that Bowman claims a lawyer showed up at her home demanding she sign a gag order that would expire in 13 years. So, THR has asked her what the hell happened.
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