Sharon Tate Profile

Sharon Tate
Sharon Tate
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(Sharon Marie Tate)
24 January 43 is born in Dallas, Texas, to Paul James and Doris Gwendolyn Tate, nee Willett. Her father's a lieutenant colonel in Army intelligence.
July 43 is named “Miss Tiny Tot” of Dallas at the age of 6 months
6 November 52 her sister Debra Ann is born
30 October 57 her sister Patricia Gay is born
58 she and her family move to the Tri-Cities area of Washington State when her father is stationed at Camp Hanford
February 59 a Columbia High School sophomore, she finds a job as a hostess for the first Tri-City Autorama show, where she is chosen "Queen of the Autorama," held at the hangar at Pasco’s airport. She’s hailed a member of the student’s council, girl’s league, and a homecoming princess.
59 is crowned "Miss Richland, Washington"
April 59 as “Queen of the 1959 Tri-City Autorama,” she welcomes crowds at the three-day grand opening event of Farley Chevrolet Co. at 3rd Avenue and Columbia Street
August 59 as the abdicating “Miss Richland,” she passes the royal robes and banner to Patti Stewart. “Sharon is leaving Richland for Italy where her father, Captain Paul Tate, has been assigned.”
59 she and her family move to Italy, where her father is stationed in Passelaqua, outside Verona
? attends Vincenza American High School in Verona
Spring 60 appears on the cover of Stars and Stripes
5 November 60 is crowned "Queen of the Prom" at Vincenza American High School's Homecoming Dance
Early 61 meets Susan Strasberg and Richard Beymer, who are on location in Verona for Hemingway’s Adventure of a Young Man. Beymer encourages her to pursue a movie career. Richard tells her "You oughta be in pictures" and gives her the business card of his agent in America, Hal Gefsky.
Spring 61 appears on a Pat Boone special being filmed in Italy by ABC-TV
she and friends answer an ad that appears in the school newspaper at Vincenza American High School looking for extras for Barrabas, filmed in Italy. She appears as an extra in the film.
Summer 61 graduates from Vincenza American High School
February 62 her father is reassigned back to the States. She returns to the States before the rest of her family, sailing on the U.S.S. Independence. On board, she meets and befriends actress Joey Heatherton. Upon her arrival in Los Angeles, she stays temporarily at a friend's home in Nichols Canyon.
Spring 62 looks up agent Hal Gefsky. He thinks she has the potential for a career in Hollywood. She moves to the Hollywood Studio Club, where her first roommate tries to entice her into a lesbian encounter. She changes roommates and moves in with aspiring actress Mary Winters.
Summer 62 does a commercial for Chevrolet automobiles and one for Santa Fe Cigars; she jobs as wine hostess for Lipper Productions, serving Kelly / Kalani Wine
renews her friendship with Richard Beymer, and they begin a brief love affair
moves into her own apartment on Fuller Street, which is managed by Richard Beymer's mother, Eunice
February 63 her family settles in San Pedro, near Los Angeles. She moves into the Hollywood Studio Club immediately afterwards.
Spring 63 works as an extra in Filmways' The Wheeler Dealers and The Americanization of Emily
Summer 63 meets and falls in love with Paris-born actor Philippe Forquet. He’s 22; she’s 20.
c. August 63 while auditing for “Whistle Stop,” later to become “Petticoat Junction,” she’s introduced to producer Martin Ransohoff, who decides to groom her instead for motion pictures
? is hospitalized due to a beating by Forquet
13 October 63 has her first walk-on appearance in a Filmways production, an episode of "Mr. Ed." The same week, she has her first speaking role in a Filmways production, a role in "The Beverly Hillbillies" TV show.
Fall 63 films episodes of "Mr. Ed" and "The Beverly Hillbillies" while attending classes with drama coach Jeff Corey, taking singing lessons in Pasadena and working-out daily at Beverly Hills Gym. Her relationship with Forquet blossoms.
December 63 is sent to New York for classes at Lee Strasberg's Actor's Studio. She and Forquet take an apartment together on Lexington and 78th Street.
27 May 64 columnist Harrison Carroll reports her and Forquet announcing their engagement
? soon afterwards, both start having "cold-feet," and the relationship ends badly. She returns to California. Forquet stays in New York and then returns to France.
Summer 64 rents an apartment at 1148 North Clark Street with aspiring starlet Sheilah Wells. They were introduced by her agent at Puppi's coffee shop on Sunset Strip and become best friends.
gets a poodle named "Love"
has her first screen-test for the role of Christian, opposite Steve McQueen in The Cincinnati Kid, but loses the role, after rave reviews, to Tuesday Weld
Thanksgiving Day 64 at a Thanksgiving party hosted by Elmer Valentine, owner of Whisky-A-Go-Go, she meets top men's hairstylist Thomas J. Kummer, a.k.a. Jay Sebring. He’s 31; she’s 21.
? she and Sebring spend a week in Hawaii with Steve McQueen and his wife, dancer Neile Adam
August 64 works as a stand-in in The Sandpiper, filmed near Big Sur, and becomes friendly with Liz Taylor’s stand-in, Raquel Welch
? is involved in a car crash near Big Sur, turning her Triumph sports car over 4 1/2 times, but escapes unhurt. Only two little scars around the eye remain.
End 64 is offered her first starring role in a movie, the non-Filmways production Tarzan and the Valley of Gold. Just prior to leaving for Acapulco to begin filming, Ransohoff refuses to release her for the part.
? Sebring and McQueen persuade her to change her agent and sign with Stan Kamen of the William Morris Agency
Early 65 has a haunting experience when awaking one night in her room at the home of Sebring at 9820 / 9860 Easton Drive, Benedict Canyon, the house where Paul Bern, husband of Jean Harlow, killed himself in 1932. She sees a “creepy little man”, she’s sure he’s Bern, coming into her bedroom and looking for something, apparently ignoring her. When she flees the room, she comes upon a figure, throat slashed, tied with white cord to the stair railing. Next morning, she leaves for her own apartment. After her death, columnist Dick Kleiner will publish the story, which she allegedly told him in early 1966.
April 65 says her boss, producer Martin Ransohoff, “has been keeping me under cover until I’ve learned my trade” in television films. Her father’s assigned to Fort MacArthur at San Pedro. Her parents and two sisters are reported living on the Palos Verdes peninsula 25 miles north of Hollywood
? Sebring wants to marry her, but she is unsure
65 tests for The Cincinnati Kid, but director Norman Jewison makes a strong stand for Tuesday Weld
September 65 is off to London for the filming of 13, starring David Niven and Kim Novak. Her friend, starlet Wende Wagner, joins her in London for a week, and they paint the town. The promotional film All Eyes on Sharon Tate is prepared to introduce her to the public. While in production, Ransohoff introduces her to Polish-born director Roman Polanski at a cocktail party at the Dorchester hotel. He's 32; she's 22. Polanski was formerly married to Polish actress Barbara Lass and just comes off a love affair with French actress Nicole Karen.
January 66 columnist Earl Wilson writes that she “left the London set of 13 to say goodbye to her father in Hollywood; he’s an Army officer off to Viet Nam.”
c. April 66 Polanski casts her over his first choice, Jill St. John, as the leading lady in The Fearless Vampire Killers
? falls for Polanski on the set of The Fearless Vampire Killers and breaks up with Sebring, whom she claims to have known for some time to not be the right one
July 66 columnist Sheila Graham reports her delaying “the finish of The Vampire Killers via a session of flu...”
August 66 moves her belongings into Polanski's London home at 95 Eaton Place Mews. She breaks the news to Sebring, who is heartbroken but determines to remain close friends with her and Roman.
returns with Polanski from England, and they rent a luxurious Santa Monica home,1038 Palisades Beach Road, built for silent movie star Norma Talmadge
September 66 is set to play “the Diana of Muscle Beach” after Julie Newmar bows out of the cast of Don’t Make Waves because she can’t lift leading man Tony Curtis
October 66 is noted dancing at the New York Plaza at a party following the big premier of A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum
November 66 flies back to New York to pose for Richard Avedon’s photo-spread “The World’s Most Beautiful Women”
columnist Sheila Graham notes: “Move over Raquel Welch. New star Sharon Tate will dominate the covers of five major U.S. magazines before her first two films. 13 and The Vampire Killers are released simultaneously in February...”
? she and Polanski become part of the Hollywood scene
March 67 photographed by Polanski she appears semi-nude in Playboy
Polanski flies in from London to be with her during the filming of Valley of the Dolls
April 67 starts filming Valley of the Dolls amidst a big publicity build-up. She and Polanski live in a huge Hollywood mansion on Pacific Coast Highway that she has rented for them.
May 67 introduces Polanski to her family
Summer 67 Polanski begins filming Rosemary's Baby on location at New York's Dakota apartments. She joins him for three days, posing for an Esquire magazine layout.
Early August 67 Wilson reports her spending time “in hot, humid N. Y. posing for Esquire’s Christmas issue...”
October 67 accompanies Polanski to the San Francisco Film Festival
Christmas 67 she and Polanski become engaged and embark with friends on a ski vacation in Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy. Their happiness is overshadowed by the unexpected illness of their close friend, composer Krzystof Komeda, who worked with Roman on several of his film scores, including his latest project, Rosemary's Baby.
Early January 68 visits composer Krzystof Komeda daily in the hospital. Eventually Komeda is flown back to his native Poland by his wife, where he dies shortly thereafter. Sharon is grief-stricken by his passing, “her first real brush with tragedy."
20 January 68 marries Polanski at the Chelsea registry office in London, 4 days short her 25th birthday. He’s 34; she’s 25. She wears a green silk mini-dress. Leslie Caron, Warren Beatty, Christine Kaufmann, Jacqueline Susann, Terence Stamp and Michael Caine are among the guests. Barbara Parkins is maid of honor. It's his second marriage and her first. Sharon says: “Roman and I plan to stay in England for a week. Then we will fly to California for our real honeymoon.”
? on their honeymoon, they ski the Swiss Alps
12 February 68 after returning to America, she and Roman attend the Golden Globe Awards in Hollywood, where she's nominated for an award as “Most Promising Female Newcomer” for Valley of the Dolls
March 68 columnist Sheila Graham knows: ”It’s a little bit awkward between Sharon Tate and her discoverer Marty Ransohoff, since her marriage to Roman Polanski. Roman and Ransohoff are in bitter feud. Sharon is still under contract to Marty, but I’ll bet that if she asked in a nice way for her release, she’d get it. The producer spent two years building Sharon to the point where she could act. One of the provisos was that she would not marry for several years. You can fight everyone except cupid!”
the critics of Valley of the Dolls write that her “figure can’t offset her shortcoming as an actress”
May 68 the Polanskis return to Europe where Roman has been invited to participate in the Cannes Film Festival. The newlyweds use this opportunity to continue their honeymoon, but political turmoil forces the festival to be cancelled on May 18. She and Roman leave Europe soon afterwards.
June 68 is nominated by the National Association of Theatre Owners for an award based on a survey completed by moviegoers taken by the trade journal Motion Picture Herald. The award honors the top "Stars of Tomorrow." Sharon is first runner-up to winner Lynn Redgrave.
Early June 68 the Polanskis return to Los Angeles and settle into the rented home of actress Patty Duke on Summit Ridge Drive
she and Polanski attend a party in honor of Robert F. Kennedy, who is campaigning for the presidential election. A few days later, he is assassinated in Los Angeles
? buys her way out of her exclusive contract with producer Ransohoff
? the Polanskis are frequent visitors at the trendy Factory, Daisy and Candy Store nightclubs
July 68 she and Polanski attend the party thrown at the Beverly Hills home of Anne and Kirk Douglas for Maya Plisetskaya, star of the Bolshoi Ballet
November 68 is reported nursing a broken foot in Paris
December 68 for a short time, she and Polanski take a bungalow at the Chateau Marmont
discovers she is pregnant
January 69 the Polanskis look for a new place to live. Real estate agent Elaine Young, ex-wife of actor Gig Young, shows her a house on Cielo Drive, built in the forties by French actress Michele Morgan. The three-bedroom-house with a kidney-shaped pool and a three car garage is the former home of actress Candice Bergen and record executive Terry Melcher, the son of Doris Day. Sharon convinces Polanski to rent if for $1,200 / $1,400 a month.
c. January 69 accepts a role in The Thirteen Chairs, to be filmed in Europe. She plans to to retire from movies after this film and to devote her time to her family.
12 February 69 she and Polanski move into 10050 Cielo Drive, Benedict Canyon Road, which is owned by theatrical agent Rudolph D. Altobelli, who stays in the guest house. She calls the $200,000 tomato-fed home in fashionable Bel Air her "Love House."
15 February 69 the Polanskis throw a housewarming party at their new home for a hundred of their closest friends, including Warren Beatty, Steve and Neile McQueen, Jane Fonda and Roger Vadim, Peter Fonda, Tony Curtis, Cass Elliot, John and Michelle Phillips, Danny Kaye and Jay Sebring.
Late February 69 she and Polanski are off to Europe, where she will film Twelve Plus One
16 March 69 Polanski leaves for Rio to begin working on a script for his forthcoming film, The Day of the Dolphin. Sharon drives him to the airport. They decide to sublet the house on Cielo Drive to director and friend Michael Sarne, but he backs out of the deal to rent a more-suitable home in Malibu.
March 69 arrangements are made for Polanski's friend Wojciech “Voyteck” Frykowski, 32, and his girlfriend, San Francisco coffee heiress Abigail Anne “Gibby” Folger, 25, to occupy the house while Roman's away
23 March 69 she and Rudi Altobelli prepare to leave for Europe the following day. She begins work on The Thirteen Chairs; he, for business purposes. In the afternoon, 24-year-old Charles Milles Manson, self-proclaimed leader of "The Family," shows up at Cielo Drive looking for Terry Melcher, whom he wants to start his recording career. Rudi Altobelli and Sharon’s photographer, Iran-born Shahrock Hatami, send him brusquely away. By chance, Frykowski, Folger, and Sebring also are present.
24 March 69 on the flight to Rome, she asks Altobelli about Manson: “Did that creepy-looking guy come back there yesterday?" During the 1970 trial, Deputy District Attorney Vincent Bugliosi will name this incident as a possible reason for the events of August 9 and to claim that Sharon saw the person who four and a half months later would mastermind her murder.
arrives in London and is temporarily reunited with her husband, Roman Polanski
July 69 sailing on the Queen Elizabeth II, she returns to California alone while Polanski remains in London for story conferences on The Day of the Dolphin. She is eight months pregnant; her due date is August 18.
? is heralded to star in Just Jaeckin’s next project, The Story of O
20 July 69 her parents visit her at the Cielo Drive house, where they join Sebring, Frykowski and Folger in watching the moon landing on television
1 August 69 because of her pregnancy, she doesn't attend Sebring’s grand opening of his new salon at 629 Commercial Street in San Francisco. Paul and Doris Tate show support to Sebring by going in her place. Also on hand is Folger, who is an investor in the enterprise.
2 August 69 Frykowski hosts a small party at the Cielo Drive house
3 August 69 spends the day with Sebring at his home on Easton Drive
4 August 69 Sebring drives her to Airways Rent-a-Car, where she picks up a rental for one week, a 1969 Chevy Camaro, while her car, a red 1962 Ferrari, is being repaired
5 August 69 she and Sebring throw a small party at the Cielo Drive house for director Roger Vadim and his wife, actress Jane Fonda
6 August 69 she, Frykowski and Folger visit director Michael Sarne at his rented home in Malibu
7 August 69 spends the day with Sebring at his home on Easton Drive. Later, they go to a screening of a new TV show, "Marcus Welby, M.D.," to see their good friend, actor Robert Lipton, appearing in the episode, one of his first acting roles. They are accompanied by starlet Connie Kreski.
8 August 69 Polanski calls her from Europe and they discuss plans for a birthday party for Roman, who promises to return to Los Angeles on Monday. Sharon entertains her close friends, actresses Joanna Pettet and Barbara Lewis, for lunch on the lawn at Cielo Drive. They talk mostly about the expected baby. Sharon, easily tired, bids farewell to her friends and heads off for a nap.
at 7:00 p.m., in a last call to Sheila Wells, she tells about Sebring coming by and that they may drive down to Dolores Drive-in for their special hamburgers
joins Sebring, Folger and Frykowski for a late dinner at El Coyote restaurant before retiring for the night
9 August 69 shortly after midnight, a killing party of four closes in on 10050 Cielo Drive “to get all the money and kill whoever is in the house.” Sent by their leader Manson, Charles Denton “Tex” Watson, 23; Patricia “Big Patty” Krenwinkel, 21; and Susan “Sexy Sadie” Atkins, 21, all barefoot and dressed in black, enter the house and go into the living room. Linda Kasabian, 20, remains outside to watch in case anyone approaches the estate.
Frykowski is the first approached by the killers in the living room where he is sleeping. “I am the Devil,” Watson announces, “and I ‘m here to do the Devil’s business.”
Folger, reading a book, notes the intruders, smiles and waves. Atkins smiles and waves back.
Watson ties Frykowski with a white rope. Krenwinkel and Atkins get Folger.
dressed in bikini panties and flimsy top, Sharon and Sebring are sitting on the bed in her bedroom talking when Atkins comes in. Sharon can’t believe what’s happening. Both are taken to the living room, and Watson puts a white nylon cord around her and Sebring’s neck.
all are ordered to lie down on their stomachs in front of the fireplace. When Sebring protests to protect Sharon, he’s the first to die, kicked and shot with a .22 caliber Buntline revolver. Before dying he cries out to spare Sharon because she’s pregnant. Later he’s also stabbed by Watson several times.
she and Folger scream as Sebring falls to the floor. Watson announces: “You’re all going to die.” Sharon, Folger and Frykowski plea for their lives. Frykowski manages to escape but Atkins stabs him several times and Watson shoots him twice. Screaming, “Help me! Oh God! Help me!” he dies of his wounds on the lawn.
Folger starts wrestling with Krenwinkel, but Watson returns to the living room. “I give up, take me,” Folger says, and Watson stabs her in the stomach. Running outside, Folger’s stabbed by Krenwinkel and Watson, who comes to Krenwinkel’s aid. Her white nightgown turns crimson while she dies.
is the last to die, begging the killers to spare her life. “Look, bitch,” Atkins replies, “I don’t care about you! I don’t care if you’re going to have a baby. You had better be ready. You’re going to die, and I don’t feel anything about it.” For some time the party argues what to do with Sharon. Finally Watson orders Atkins to kill her. Atkins, assisted by Watson, stabs her numerous times. Sharon's last words are "Mother, mother!" Her baby dies in her womb about 15 minutes later. The killings take just over half an hour.
before leaving Atkins soaks a towel with Sharon’s blood and writes “PIG” on the front door
later this night, Manson himself shows up at Cielo Drive with at least one other member of his family to see “what his children have done.” Her and Sebring’s lifeless bodies are moved out onto the front porch before finally being returned to the living room; a pair of eyeglasses is left to irritate the police.
at 8:00 a.m., housekeeper Winifred Chapman finds the living room with blood everywhere. Sharon’s mutilated body is found on the living room floor in front of the long couch. A white nylon cord runs around her neck, over a ceiling beam, and then to the neck of Sebring, 35, who had been shot and stabbed numerous times, his head shrouded in a towel-like hood. On the lawn outside the house are the horribly slashed bodies of Folger, 25, and Frykowski, 32. Steven Parent, 18, who came to visit the caretaker of the property, is found stabbed and shot in the seat of his car near the gate.
Polanski’s agent, William Tennant, has to identify the bodies. Afterwards he throws up.
Tennant informs Polanski in London about the murders. Polanski flies back immediately.
the police find drugs in and around the premises, also in Sebring’s black Porsche, parked outside the house. There will be rumors, Sebring was into kinky sex, tying up and slapping the women before having sexual relations.
early in the afternoon, her body is taken to the Los Angeles Medical Examiner's Office
10 August 69 at 11.20 p.m., Chief Coroner Dr. Thomas Noguchi begins the autopsy, noting the cause of death as "multiple stab wounds of chest and back penetrating heart, lungs, and liver causing massive hemorrhage." She was stabbed 16 times, some of the wounds inflicted post mortem.
? producer Robert Evans’ Paramount offices handle the arrangements for her funeral
? her body, dressed in a blue and yellow Emilio Pucci print mini, is placed in a satin-lined silver casket with her unborn baby, Paul Richard Polanski, wrapped in a shroud. On Polanski’s instructions, the coffin is closed.
13 August 69 as Sharon Marie Tate Polanski, she is interred at Saint Ann's Section, L152, 6, Holy Cross Memorial Cemetery in Culver City, California. Among the mourners are John and Michelle Phillips, Peter Sellers, Kirk Douglas, Joan Collins, Robert and Peggy Lipton, Warren Beatty, Yul Brynner, James Coburn, and Lee Marvin. Steve McQueen doesn’t attend.
November 69 Altobelli files suit in Santa Monica Superior Court asking for $650,000 damages from Life and $198,000 from Polanski claiming that a picture story in Life magazine has lessened his chances of finding new tenants for his Cielo Drive property. In 1994, the owners will tear down the house and build a new 17,000-square-foot Mediterranean villa on the same site; the number is changed to 10066.
1 December 69 Manson's Family, a hippie commune living at Spahn Ranch, is taken into custody. In the ensuing trial, it’s suggested that Manson ordered everyone to be killed at Cielo Drive because former inhabitant Terry Melcher rejected some of his songs. But there are also rumors about a drug deal between Manson and Frykowski gone haywire.
29 March 71 Manson, Watson, Krenwinkel, and Atkins receive the death penalty, but their sentence is later automatically reduced to life. Kasabian strikes a deal with Bugliosi and receives complete immunity.
06 Manson is incarcerated in protective housing unit at Corcoran State Prison; Krenwinkel and Atkins serve life sentences at California Institution for Women at Frontera, Watson at Mule Creek State Prison in Northern California. All are frequently denied parole.
Joe Crosswicks, Fallen Angels by Kirk Crivello, Sharon Tate and the Manson Murders by Greg King, Helter Skelter - The True Story of the Manson Murders by Vincent Bugliosi and Curt Gentry, "Murder Most Unforgettable" by Dominick Dunne in Vanity Fair, Tri-City Herald, Parade, The Galveston News, Independent Star-News, Pasadena Star-News, Bucks Courier County Times, Pasadena Independent, The Post-Standard, Syracuse Herald-Journal, Long Beach Independent Press-Telegram, News Journal Mansfield, The Daily Review,
Recommended Books:
Fallen Angels by Kirk Crivello
Sharon Tate and the Manson Murders by Greg King
Helter Skelter - The True Story of the Manson Murders by Vincent Bugliosi and Curt Gentry
The Encyclopedia of Sixties Cool by Chris Strodder
Glamour Girls of Sixties Hollywood by Tom Lisanti
Official Message Board
Sharon in Art
Sharon Tate Web Site
Sharon Tate
Sharon and Roman's Life in Pictures
The Sixties, Manson and Helter Skelter
Crime Library: Sharon Tate
Historical Dead Girls: Sharon Tate
Simply Classics: Sharon Tate
!WOm!WAm!: Sharon Tate
"All Eyes on Sharon Tate" at YouTube