Game Of Thrones star Carice Van Houten has been cast as silver screen icon Greta Garbo in a new movie. The Dutch actress, who portrays Melisandre in Game of Thrones, will study the Swedish movie star for the as-yet-untitled biopic, which will chronicle the film legend's humble beginnings as shopgirl in Stockholm to her heyday as one of the world's most enigmatic beauties.
Van Houten, who will also produce the project, tells Screendaily.com, "I was raised with silent films. I have always maintained an endless fascination for that era. Greta Garbo has gotten to me more than any other movie star and never let me go. I am strongly drawn to her story, her art, her loneliness and her beautiful complex structure."
It's the end of an era only eight years long. On Thursday — capping off a popedom filled with controversy and car blessings — Pope Benedict XVI left the Vatican.
RELATED: Why Did Pope Benedict Really Resign?
Benedict — who left for Castel Gandolfo, where he'll stay for several months to finally give the top of his head some much-needed air — announced his resignation in early February, citing his advancing age and health. It was a shocking announcement to admirers of Benedict — only five popes have stepped away from religious fame and followings.
But perhaps more shocking are those who stepped away from Hollywood fame and fortune. Gene Hackman, Greta Garbo, Amanda Bynes — many stars at the top of their game have decided their dreams extend far beyond the Boulevard of Broken Dreams. So who, like Benedict, quit life at the top? Click below for our gallery of stars who quit Hollywood!
GALLERY: 10 Stars Who Quit Hollywood
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Hanlon died on Thursday (13Dec12) in Las Vegas. No details about his cause of death have been released as WENN goes to press.
Hanlon starred in 1926's The General alongside Buster Keaton, and went on to play mischievous kids in The Glorious Fourth and Olympic Games.
He starred in The Shakedown and was in a scene with Greta Garbo in 1930's Romance, in which he got a kiss from the screen legend.
After leaving Hollywood, Hanlon became a furniture mover and moved to Las Vegas in 1994.
Bidding stunned many experts as a haul of items, including Garbo's favourite black velvet evening gown and her passport, went under the hammer for 10 times more than expected during the first of a two-day sale at Julien's Auctions.
The 1930s dress, which was expected to fetch $1,200 (£750), sold for $13,750 (£8,590), while her passport went under the hammer for $15,000 (£9,400) - $10,000 (£6,250) more than expected.
The reclusive and enigmatic Grand Hotel star died in 1990, aged 84.
The legendary Hollywood actress' great-nephew Derek Reisfield has partnered with Los Angeles auction house Julien's Auctions to host the November (12) transatlantic showcase of Garbo's gowns, photographs, personal items and luggage onboard the Queen Mary 2.
Reisfield will be a featured speaker in the ship's Insights Programme, providing a look into Garbo's life, her film career and her position as a cultural icon.
Select items from the Sweden-born actress' estate will be exclusively available for auction to guests sailing on the voyage from Southampton, New York to the Big Apple.
The collection also features Garbo's accessories and furnishings from her New York apartment and Swedish manor house.
A second auction will be held at Julien's Auctions in Beverly Hills in December (12).
Motorcycle officer Roy Garrett let a string of superstars off for speeding and jumping red lights in Beverly Hills, California in the 1950s and '60s in exchange for a personally signed photo.
Now his extensive collection, which features legends includes Monroe, Martin, James Stewart and Greta Garbo, will go up for sale at an auction in Beverly Hills on 24 July (12).
The Monroe snap, which is expected to raise $32,000 (£20,000), includes the line, "To Roy, love and kisses. Thanks for keeping me out of the clink."
Heritage Auctions representative Margaret Barrett says, "Officer Garrett had a good gig going. He made no secret of letting stars off a ticket in return for a signed photo. The Marilyn Monroe one is a real gem - she only signed photos for people she knew and not random strangers. It was all quite innocent but in any case, he died about 15 years ago so isn't going to get busted for it now."
The Pirates of the Caribbean star reteamed with her Atonement director Joe Wright for the literary masterpiece, with Knightley playing Karenina, a married woman who has an affair with a soldier.
Greta Garbo and Helen McCrory have previously played the part - but Knightley was keen not to pay close attention to their scenes.
She tells Interview magazine, "I saw a couple of versions ages ago. I've seen the one that was on TV in England with Helen McCrory playing Anna, and she's wonderful.
"I also saw the Greta Garbo version, but years and years ago. I didn't want to see it again just before I played the part because I thought if I did something similar that I would want it to be an accident, not because I've nicked (stolen) it."
The One Million Years B.C. star is famous for her sun-kissed complexion and she insists a few rays on the beach are good for you.
While many stars opt for fake tans and warn of skin damage from too much sunshine, Welch says, "When you have Latina blood you don't burn like white people, so to speak."
The actress admits her Bolivian father was "very sensitive" when it came to protecting his daughter from too much sun, insisting she wear a hat at the beach, but Welch was too cool to pay attention.
She tells WENN, "I grew up in La Hoya and there were all these surfers and you didn't wear hats to the beach. After high school I would slather the moisturiser on."
Nowadays she takes more precautions: "I wear a huge Greta Garbo hat just to go out for a walk, but I still go and bake on my holidays near the sea and I lie out in the sun. I think we should all spend some time in the sunshine. There's a lot of Vitamin D and it makes you feel good."
And she urges Hollywood's modern beauties to stop worrying about how the sun will prematurely age them: "You've got to live your life and not worry about how you're going to age. It's just too much."
The two goddesses spent a lot of time in each other's company on the set of the 1970 film - and Welch admits she started to think there was something more than a little odd about her co-star.
During a Raquel Welch film retrospective in New York at the weekend (11-12Feb12), the still-stunning actress explained, "She never worked before 5pm and... she also never moved by herself, so the limo that took her to the studio, to her dressing room, also brought her onto the set. So they had to open the huge door where they load in scenery. She was kind of like a piece of scenery!
"When I went over to say hello to her (one day) I said, 'Hi, it's Raquel, remember?' She sort of extended her hand to me and I went to kiss the ring and one false fingernail painted silver fell to the floor. I looked at the hand and I thought, 'Oh, I'm getting a vibe'. I really think she's a man!
"At this point in her life all bets are off and you're not going to be able to doll it (appearance) up that much. I would say it's pretty accurate that she resembled a dock worker in drag."
Welch admitted it was a thrill to work with West - but she took away a very bad memory from their time together: "I had this beautiful dress and it was black with a big white ruffle around the neck and a black velvet hat, based on a costume that was worn by Greta Garbo. It was very chic and I couldn't wait to wear it. (Costume designer) Theodora Van Runkle designed it for the scene with Mae West because she was wearing all white with black trim, so this would be perfect.
"Apparently Mae got wind of the fact that I was wearing this exquisite dress and I went to the studio that day for our scene together. I got coiffed, got my hair done and went to the closet to get the dress and it wasn't there. I asked my dresser what happened to the dress and she said, 'It's been confiscated. Mae does not want you to wear that dress. You can wear the red dress that you wore in the last scene!'
"Mae had approval over everything that was worn on the set... The producer said, 'It's (dress) a non-colour and nobody gets to wear non-colours in the movie but Mae.'"
Welch was so outraged, she stormed off the set and refused to return until the dress was back in her closet.
She recalled, "For the scene, we never appeared in a two-shot together. She left after she did her lines and I had someone off-camera reading her lines and I had to pretend she was there."
The pioneering screenwriter passed away of natural causes on Thursday (05Jan12). She was the third oldest person in California.
She began her Hollywood career aged 23 and racked up credits for silent films including Flesh and the Devil with Greta Garbo, Dance Madness, His Secretary and The Waning Sex.
Maas also penned the screenplay for 1925's The Plastic Age, acknowledged as the movie which launched Bow's career.
She married Ernest Maas, her writing partner, in the late 1920s but they struggled to sell their scripts in Hollywood after they were wrongly branded communists and blacklisted by industry executives. Ernest died in 1986.