Kim Novak, one of the hottest sex symbols of the 1950’s, has been diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 77.
AFP reports that Novak’s cancer was discovered during a routine examination and mammogram — and is expected to make a full recovery.
Sue Cameron, spokesman for the Hollywood icon says, “All her doctors say she is in fantastic physical shape and should recover very well.”
The actress credits working out 3 times a week along with riding as the secret to her keeping fit.
Though the hazel-eyed beauty originally started in Hollywood as a model, Columbia Pictures signed her to her first contract (for 6 months) as its own version of the popular Marilyn Monroe.
Ironically, the star’s real given name is “Marilyn,” and so the Bell, Book, and Candle star was forced to change her name for identity purposes, while retaining her surname of Novak.
Although the blonde bombshell’s most memorable film would be Alfred Hitchcock’s Vertigo, co-starring Jimmy Stewart — it was her dance in Picnic with leading man William Holden that got her noticed and first set audiences hearts to pounding.
GlamourGirlsOfTheSilverScreen romantically links the Hollywood hottie to a number of men including millionaire Edgar Ausnit, actor Ted Cooper, theater magnate Mac Krim, Prince Aly Kahn, Count Mario Bandini, actor John Ireland, Sammy Davis Jr., Frank Sinatra, and co-star from The Amorous Advetures of Moll Flanders, Richard Johnson.
Though the “Moll Flanders” actress revealed in an interview with Larry King that Frank Sinatra (her co-star in Pal Joey and The Man with the Golden Arm) was her first date in Hollywood, it was Richard Johnson that she later married.
Novak’s marriage to Johnson only lasted 1 year, and she remained single until her marriage to her current husband in 1976.
The Czech-American actress from Chicago currently resides with her husband of 34 years, Dr. Robert Malloy, an Oregon veterinarian who shares her love of horseback riding and raising llamas.
Did you know? IMDb reports that Kim Novak turned down the leading roles in blockbuster films Breakfast at Tiffany’s, The Hustler, and Animal House to focus on her personal interests at the time (See slideshow for Kim Novak movies and film stills).