Actress Raquel Welch died on Wednesday at the age of 82. With her representations of powerful women in numerous films throughout the 1960s and 1970s, Welch helped redefine the conventional image of the Hollywood sex symbol.
Her Los Angeles-based manager, Jane McKnight, confirmed her passing after a brief illness in a statement.
With her part as a member of a miniature medical team implanted inside the body of a wounded diplomat in the 1966 science fiction adventure Fantastic Voyage, Welch gained widespread recognition. She is also remembered for the skin-tight diving suit she wore in a scene where she was attacked by antibodies.
Later that year, in the ancient fantasy drama One Million Years BC, in which cavemen and women dwell with dinosaurs, she made an iconic cameo. This followed her success in that movie.
Starring parts in films like Bedazzled, Bandolero, 100 Rifles, Myra Breckinridge, and Hannie Caulder were among her other notable cinematic appearances in the late 1960s and early 1970s. She was honoured with a Golden Globe for best actress in a musical or comedy in 1973 for her work in the action-packed adventure The Three Musketeers.
Her depiction of independent, strong women is credited with transforming preconceptions. She was voted No 3 in Playboy magazine’s list of the “100 Sexiest Stars of the 20th Century” at one point, but despite having appeared for the publication in 1979, she never took part in a totally nude picture session.
She went on to have a career that lasted more than 50 years, performing in more than 30 movies and 50 television shows. She also worked as an entrepreneur and launched the popular wig business HairUWear as well as a line of jewellery and skin-care items.
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