Sharon Tate

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Sharon Marie Tate (January 24, 1943 – August 9, 1969) was an American actress. During the 1960s she played small television roles before appearing in several films. After receiving positive reviews for her comedic performances, she was hailed as one of Hollywood's promising newcomers and was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for her performance in Valley of the Dolls (1967). She also appeared regularly in fashion magazines as a model and cover girl.

Married to the film director Roman Polanski in 1968, Tate was eight and a half months pregnant when she was murdered in her home, along with four others, by followers of Charles Manson.

A decade after the murders, Tate's mother, Doris, in response to the growing cult status of the killers and the possibility that any of them might be granted parole, organized a public campaign against what she considered shortcomings in the state's corrections system which led to amendments to the California criminal law in 1982, which allowed crime victims and their families to make victim impact statements during sentencing and at parole hearings. Doris Tate was the first person to make such an impact statement under the new law, when she spoke at the parole hearing of one of her daughter's killers, Charles "Tex" Watson. She later said that she believed the changes in the law had afforded her daughter dignity that had been denied her before, and that she had been able to "help transform Sharon's legacy from murder victim to a symbol of victims' rights".[1]

Contents

Life and career

Childhood and early acting career

Sharon Tate was born in Dallas, Texas, the first of three daughters, to Paul Tate, a United States Army officer, and his wife, Doris. At six months of age, Sharon Tate won the "Miss Tiny Tot of Dallas Pageant", but the Tates held no show business ambitions for their daughter. Paul Tate was promoted and transferred several times. By age 16, Sharon Tate had lived in six different American cities, and she found it difficult to maintain friendships. Her family described her as shy and lacking in self-confidence, and as an adult Sharon Tate commented that people often misinterpreted her shyness for aloofness until they knew her better.[1]

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