If there’s one woman who’ll make you turn your heads – it’s Barbara Eden. She’s now in her nineties and is remembered as one of the most iconic actresses of her generation. She’s best known for her role as Jeannie in the hit sitcom I Dream of Jeannie.
But how did Barbara Eden get her start in life? Her beginnings were humble and her journey was full of struggle. It took a while for her to start a successful acting career but she began at an early age.
She’s still remembered for her role as Jeannie and she’s won praise for her other television and film roles.
And she’s still considered a beautiful sex symbol. As you’ll see in this video, you’ll see Barbara Eden swimsuit photos that are still turning heads…
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Barbara Jean Morehead was born on the 23rd of August, 1931, in Tucson, Arizona. Her parents were Hubert Morehead and Alice Franklin. Barbara parents divorced while she was still young and the family moved to San Francisco where Barbara would spend her formative years.
Her family struggled through much of Barbara’s childhood as they had struggled from The Great Depression and were constantly experiencing economic woes. To keep the family’s spirits up, Alice would sing songs to her children and even taught them how to sing.
Barbara became keen on singing herself and decided to see if she could earn money from her talents. As she approached her teens, she began singing in local nightclubs and earned a bit of cash here and there to help her family.
While her goal was to help her family, she soon realized that she had a talent people were willing to pay for. She decided that she should also try her luck at acting.
She joined the Actor’s Equity and also began studying acting at the Elizabeth Holloway School of Theatre. Upon graduating from high school, she studied theater at the City College of San Francisco. She also won Miss San Francisco 1951 and was a participant in the Miss California beauty pageant. Join Facts Verse to learn about Barbara Eden’s Career and swimsuit photos.
After an initial struggle to break through, Barbara managed to find regular acting work in the mid-1950s.
She had a few bit parts here and there on shows such as I Love Lucy, The Millionaire, The Wayward Girl, Perry Mason, and Gunsmoke. She then became the lead in the hit sitcom How to Marry a Millionaire. This brought greater attention to Barbara’s work and more importantly, to her as a star.
Now, audiences could look back at previous bit roles and recognize Barbara – and see how she progressed as an actress. To this day, huge fans love watching shows from The Virginian to Father Knows Best just to catch a glimpse of Barbara Eden in her guest appearances.
How To Marry a Millionaire was a stepping stone for Barbara to land more guest appearances and recurring roles on popular TV shows. It’s also what helped launch her successful film career.
She appeared in films such as Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter, The Wayward Girl, A Private’s Affair, From The Terrace, and Flaming Star.
It wasn’t long until she landed larger roles. Her film career was growing tremendously and she was gaining more attention from producers and audiences alike. By the mid-1960s, she was now a huge TV and film star. She praised for her excellent acting skills and, without a doubt, audiences took notice of her incredible beauty and any photo of her would turn heads!
But, despite her big successes so far, she had barely scratched the surface. Her biggest success, was just around the corner…
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I DREAM OF JEANNIE
As Barbara Eden’s profile grew, there were more offers coming her way for both film and television projects.
In 1965, she got her biggest role of all time when she cast as Jeannie in a new sitcom called I Dream of Jeannie. There many actresses considered for the role and several more who auditioned for it. Yet, producer Sidney Sheldon knew that Barbara Eden would be perfect for the role.
And he was right! Barbara Eden played Jeannie in 139 episodes of the show across 5 seasons. She gave one of her best performances in the show and it’s still the role that she’s best remembered for.
I Dream of Jeannie dealt with an astronaut, played by Larry Hagman, who marries a beautiful woman – who, unbeknownst to him at first, is actually a genie. Jeannie – or Barbara Eden – became every American man’s dream.
Her character was unique – with only Bewitched having a similar to I Dream of Jeannie. Her sexy costume was one of the highlights of the show, including her belly button which caused quite a stir in the 60s – after audiences had become used to the more conservative and family-oriented sitcoms of the 1950s.
While many actresses might get bored of one role for so long, Barbara Eden loved her work on I Dream of Jeannie and still remembers the show fondly to this day.
It’s been almost 60 years since I Dream of Jeannie aired on national TV and yet it still seems just as fresh as ever. To this day, Barbara Eden gives interviews where she discusses her career and her time on I Dream of Jeannie! Join Facts Verse to learn about Barbara Eden’s Career and swimsuit photos.
In fact, she can even recall some of her best memories on the show and her favorite moments from certain episodes. She recalls that the pilot – the very first episode – was one of the most memorable moments working on the show. Not a bad way to start, eh?
It was cold when they shot the scene where Jeannie’s bottle lands on a desert island where Tony Nelson – played by Larry Hagman – was stranded during a trip. Tony finds the Jeannie in the bottle to be incredibly beautiful and quickly falls in love with her. It may seem romantic when we watch it today but Barbara Eden remembers shivering during the filming!
And of course, Jeannie was wearing a revealing outfit which only made things cold for poor Barbara!
Of course, there were a few times when she covered up. But this wasn’t because the producers wanted her to be a bit more modest. Rather, it was to hide something. Barbara Eden pregnant during the first season of the show and her body often covered to hide her growing belly!
These are just some of many fond memories that Barbara has had of Jeannie. She loved working on the show and often states how lucky she was to work on it.
To this day, I Dream of Jeannie remains one of the most popular American sitcoms of all time.
While Barbara Eden has had a long and varied career, this remains one of the highlights of her life. And she’s still grateful for the opportunity and the memories…
BARBARA EDEN’S LIFE AND LEGACY
One of Barbara’s first successes after I Dream of Jeannie came to an end was a TV movie called ‘The Feminist and the Fuzz.’
She teamed up with Larry Hagman again to star in the TV movie “A Howling In The Woods” which became a huge hit. She wasn’t afraid to take on riskier roles as well. One of her most unique roles was in the film “The Stranger Within” in which she played a housewife who gets pregnant by aliens!
She also won praise for her role as Liz Stonestreet in “Stonestreet: Who Killed the Centerfold Model?”
Her acting career in both film and television continued throughout the 80s and 90s and she established herself as one of the most prolific actresses of her generation. During the late 80s and early 90s, she became known for her role as Lee Ann De Vega in the hit soap opera Dallas.
In 1991, she starred in the TV movie I Still Dream of Jeannie – reprising her famous role almost three decades later. The early 2000s, she appeared in a few episodes of Sabrina The Teenage Witch as Aunt Irma.
Her most recent role was as Mrs. Claus in the 2019 film My Adventures With Santa.
Barbara Eden’s memoir ‘Jeannie Out of the Bottle’ was published in 2011. She was married thrice to Michael Ansara, Charles Fegert, and Jon Eicholtz. One of the hardest moments of her life was when her only son, Matthew, died of a drug overdose.
Nevertheless, even with a difficult personal life – Barbara Eden has always kept a smile on her face. She’s in her nineties now and her most recent acting credit was only three years ago! It seems that we’ll still see a lot more of her.
She still gives interviews and appears publicly to discuss her life and career.
And for that, we can only be grateful! Decades ago we dreamed of Jeannie and we’ll continue to dream of Barbara!
Are you a fan of Barbara Eden’s? Did you grow up watching I Dream of Jeannie?
Now, we’d like to know your opinion:
Do you think that Barbara Eden and actresses like her are still considered sex symbols today? Or are there actresses today that have taken their place and have reached greater stardom?
We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
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