While Margaret Nolan was a beautiful model, there was so much more to her than just her looks. In today’s video, we’re going to take a look at how her career bloomed before ultimately withering away until her eventual, tragic death in October of 2020. While she was best known for her appearance in Goldfinger, there was one other film that helped her attain great fame during the height of her career. Make sure you stick around to learn about her film appearance with the legendary band The Beatles.
Margaret Nolan’s Early Life
There are many celebrities, like Chris Pine and Dakota Johnson, who were born into famous families who could give them a boost into the world of fame. Margaret Nolan, however, was born into a rather humble family. She was born on October 29th, 1942, in Hampstead, London, England. Her father, Jack Nolan, was an Irish army clerk. Meanwhile, her mother, Molly Nolan, worked as a nurse. During World War II, the family moved to Ireland, which was far safer than London.
Of course, neither of Margaret’s parents had any ties to fame or showbusiness. Surprisingly, however young Margaret Nolan didn’t have any dreams of becoming a model or an actor until later in her life. As a little girl, she was perfectly content living a completely ordinary life. In fact, she had just begun training to become a teacher when everything changed.
Her Marriage to Tom Kempinski
Margaret Nolan had no notions of fame or fortune; she was perfectly happy with becoming a schoolteacher. However, that would all change when she met Tom Kempinski, an English playwright and actor. The two began dating, but Tom had more to offer to Margaret than just romance; he was also the person who introduced her to the world of theatre.
When the two met, Kempinski was working at the National Theatre. His work made Margaret realize how much she was missing in life. Suddenly, an entirely new life path opened up for her, and she discarded her dream of becoming a teacher in favor of an entirely new career. The fast-paced world of acting was entirely different from the humble life of a teacher, and Margaret found herself wishing for a more glamorous life than her parents.
Early Days as a Glamour Model
While Margaret Nolan ultimately hoped to end up as an actor, she began her career as a glamour model in the 60s, with the encouragement of her boyfriend, Tom Kempinski. Like many budding celebrities, she changed her name to Vicky Kennedy, hoping it would sound more glamorous to potential modeling agencies. Before long, however, her career began to pick up speed. She was sought after by directors for theatrical productions, films, and television shows. She promptly changed her name back to Margaret Nolan, ultimately deciding that it was more professional.
Her Appearance in A Hard Day’s Night
By the 1960s, Beatlemania had gripped the world. This groundbreaking new band was producing music the likes of which nobody had ever heard before, and girls were swooning left and right over the four band members. In 1964, The Beatles starred in a musical comedy film called A Hard Day’s Night, and this film is what elevated Margaret Nolan’s career.
The film was revered long after its release. Time magazine even listed it on a top 100 list of greatest films of all time. It has even been described as one of the most influential musical films ever released, inspiring dozens of spy films, pop music videos, and countless other forms of media. Margaret Nolan appeared in the film simply as “a girl at the casino.” Her role wasn’t even credited. Still, being able to write A Hard Day’s Night on her resume opened up countless possibilities. And, she was one of the lucky women who was able to say she worked on a film with The Beatles!
While Margaret Nolan’s appearance in A Hard Day’s Night sent her career skyrocketing for a short time, she would drop out of the public eye in the 80s until her tragic death in 2020. Make sure you stick around to find out how she died, as well as the legacy she left behind. And, if you’re enjoying this video so far, please take a moment to like the video and subscribe to our channel for more!
Her Appearance in Goldfinger
In the same year that A Hard Day’s Night was released, Margaret Nolan also found a role in the James Bond film Goldfinger. By this point, James Bond was a sensational film franchise, and landing a role in the movie was a huge turning point in Nolan’s career. She played the role of Dink, James Bond’s personal masseuse. More importantly, however, was her modeling work for the film. She was famously fitted into a gold bikini and sprayed with gold paint. She then modeled in various poses, which were used in the film’s opening title sequence, as well as advertisements. Soon after, she was photographed in the same ensemble for Playboy magazine, in a special edition entitled James Bond’s Girls. Many people view her appearance in Goldfinger as Margaret Nolan’s crowning achievement.
The End of Her Acting Career
Margaret Nolan’s career was greatly influenced by her work in Goldfinger, and various producers and directors longed for her to appear in their films and television shows. Throughout the 70s and 80s, she found steady work in film and television, including Carry On Girls and Toomorrow. While most of the films she appeared in focused on her physical attributes and attractive figure, she also found work in more serious and political theatrical productions.
By the mid-1980s, however, roles began to dry up. She was in her forties at this time, and she wasn’t considered as attractive as she had been in her 20s and 30s. In 1986, Margaret Nolan appeared in her final film for several decades, Sky Bandits.
Her Career as a Visual Artist and Her Return to Film
During her long hiatus from her acting career, Margaret Nolan turned to visual art. She cut up images of herself from magazines and rearranged the pieces into grotesque imagery. When interviewed, Nolan explained that her art was meant to represent the way women were viewed and treated in the film and modeling industries.
After nearly three decades, Margaret Nolan decided it was time for her to return to film. She appeared in the 2011 movie Power of Three, although the film didn’t receive much attention. As we mentioned earlier, it is far more difficult for older women to find work in Hollywood. Her final work as an actor was in the film Life in Soho, which is set to be released in 2021. Sadly, she died before she could ever see the film hit the big screen.
Her Tragic Death
Margaret Nolan was always rather private about her personal life, so her death on October 5th, 2020, came as something of a shock to the rest of the world. Sadly, Nolan had been quietly battling cancer, and she ultimately succumbed to the illness when she was 76. Even more tragically, she had planned on writing a memoir, but the work was never finished. Still, we have her work and her interviews to look back on, and each piece of the puzzle paints a beautiful legacy.
Which of Margaret Nolan’s film appearances do you think was more influential, Goldfinger or A Hard Day’s Night? Let us know in the comments below, and don’t forget to subscribe to Facts Verse for more!