My Life In Three Acts
BY PAM GRIER
AND ANDREA CAGAN
Beautiful, bold, and bad, Pam Grier burst onto the movie scene in the 1970s, setting the screen on fire and forever changing the country's view of African American actresses. With a killer attitude and body to match, Grier became the ultimate fantasy of men everywhere. But she quickly proved that she was more than just a desirable film goddess. She had the brains, courage, and tenacity to sustain a career that would span more than 30 years. In FOXY, she chronicles the good, bad, and steamy highlights in her life and career.
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Pam Grier started her career in the early 1970s, starring in a string of moderately successful women-in-prison films and blaxploitation films, and has generally remained in the public eye, starring in movies such as Coffy, Foxy Brown, and Jackie Brown. After taking a short break from Hollywood, Pam returned to films in the 80s, like Fort Apache the Bronx, Something Wicked this Way Comes, and Above the Law. She also made a guest appearances on Miami Vice and The Fresh Prince of Bel Air. Pam also played Kit Porter on the controversial hit show "The L Word" on Showtime. She occasionally guest-stars in Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, where she plays a recurring character. She spends her free time on her ranch in Colorado.
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In this fascinating memoir, FOXY: MY LIFE IN THREE ACTS, Pam Grier gives her own version of her life laid out in three parts. In the first part, Act One: The Early Years, Grier honed in on growing up during segregation, her childhood years, and the people important in her life at that time. Her mother was a strong influence with her strength and the importance she put on doing a good job and working hard. Her Aunt Mennon was a passionate, intense presence in her life. Of course, there was also the other side of this part of her life and that included being molested by her cousins when she was only six years old. Grier’s account of this part of her life was not without pain but also bravery as she finally was able to talk about this traumatic time in her life. At that time, she didn’t and in telling it now, she showed how this can and does happen so often and also how important it is that young people have someone they can turn to and tell them about it.
In Fro’s and Freaks, Act Two, she tells of her life as young woman, including her college years, a second rape, the pain of her parents divorcing, and how she got into her acting career. She got through much of it by remembering what her mother taught her about strength and a good work ethic. With Pam Grier, acting was taken seriously and with her intelligence and honesty, she often got roles that others were passed over for. This section also went into Grier’s relationships with people like Kareem Abdul Jabar and Freddie Prinz, Jr., as well as Richard Prior. Their relationship broke when Jabar became a member of the Nation of Islam , and she also discusses openly the others and their ending due to drug use. She told of this time of her life in how it effected her and did not tell about it to dwell on anyone else’s problems with drugs but merely to tell of her situation.
The last part of the book is Act 3: Finding The Balance, and it is here that Pam Grier bravely tells of her battle with cancer. She describes this time and how she was her own person and took steps that needed to be taken and didn’t let anyone tell her what to do. Her strength and honesty is refreshing as she says she has few regrets. The memoir is well written and leaves you knowing that this Pam Grier is her own woman who never let things get her down. This strength is what served her well and what we will always remember her for in the characters she played and we enjoyed watching.
THANKS TO ANNA AND THE
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