Georgine Darcy, who played the across-the-courtyard dancer dubbed “Miss Torso” by wheelchair-bound voyeur James Stewart in Alfred Hitchcock’s classic 1954 thriller “Rear Window,” died July 18 in Malibu, Calif. Her age was variously reported as 68 or 71.
The former ballerina, who never viewed herself as an actress, was one of the last surviving members of the cast that included Stewart, Grace Kelly, Thelma Ritter, Wendell Corey and Raymond Burr.
Just 17 when she was chosen for the film. Hitchcock hired her based on a publicity photo of her with a green feather boa and dressed in a black leotard that emphasized her voluptuous figure.
When Darcy met Hitchcock, she had no idea who the legendary director was. He suggested she get an agent, but she didn’t and consequently was paid only $350 for the role that would make her a pinup.
Born in Brooklyn, Darcy was urged by her mother to become a stripper. Instead she chose ballet, and acted sporadically.
Other than “Rear Window,” Darcy’s most memorable role was as the irreverent secretary Gypsy on the 1960-61 television series “Harrigan and Son,” featuring Pat O’Brien as her attorney boss.
She also appeared in the films “Don’t Knock the Twist” in 1962, “Women and Bloody Terror” in 1969 and “The Delta Factor” in 1970, and in guest roles on television’s “M Squad,” “Westinghouse Desilu Playhouse” and “Mannix.”
She is survived by her husband, actor Byron Palmer.