Tuesday, March 10, 2015

PRESS UPDATE : PALM BEACH DAILY NEWS ... MARCH 9TH 2015 ...

Joan Collins shares life lessons at Center for Family Services benefit

  Joan Collins shares life lessons at Center for Family Services benefit photo

Joan Collins
Daily News Staff Writer
English actress Dame Joan Collins is best known for her role as the passionate yet vengeful Alexis Carrington Colby on the 1980s television soap opera Dynasty.
Alexis was a groundbreaking character for women on television, Collins told the audience at Thursday’s Old Bags Luncheon at The Breakers, the signature event of the Center for Family Services.
“She was the first woman to dominate the boardroom and the bedroom,” Collins said. “She was ahead of her time. She believed that women can do everything men can do. I believe that, too.”
Collins looked back over a long and successful acting career that began on the London stage when she was 9. At 22, she set out for Hollywood, where she landed steamy roles in several popular films during the 1950s.
Her father had opposed her career choice, telling her it would be over by the time she was 23. “I’m not done yet, Daddy,” said Collins.
Collins is an author of bestselling novels, lifestyle books and memoirs.
“The harder I work, the luckier I get,” she said. “I’ve always believed in the power of positive thinking. If you really wanted something and you really worked at it, you would be able to achieve it.”
Sold-out event
The annual luncheon benefits the Center for Family Services. Thursday’s event was sold out, with 570 ticket-holders.
Proceeds support the only emergency shelter for homeless families in Palm Beach County, and a program for victims of sexual abuse and domestic violence.
Collins said that, at 18, she was date-raped by Maxwell Reed, an Irish actor who would become her first husband. During the marriage, Reed slapped her and threatened to cut her face if she didn’t do as she was told. “I was very, very scared,” she said.
Victims of domestic abuse feel frightened and humiliated and often believe they are trapped or that they deserve what is happening to them, Collins said.
Collins said she left Reed after he tried to sell her to an Arab sheik for 10,000 pounds. The couple divorced in 1956 after four years of marriage. Reed died in 1974.
“I was one of the lucky ones who got out before it was too late,” she said. “I never let myself be in an abusive relationship again.”

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