Jessica Lange, Then And Now: How The Young 'King Kong' Siren Became A Star

By Karen Harris
Jessica Lange on the set of The Postman Always Rings Twice (1981), based on the novel by James M. Cain, and directed by Bob Rafelson. (Photo by Sunset Boulevard/Corbis via Getty Images)

When audiences first saw Jessica Lange on screen, she was an object of fascination for a giant ape. The 1976 King Kong remake was not a great film, but it showed the world how beautiful Jessica Lange was then -- now, we know her to be one of the greatest actresses of her generation. She's proven her acting chops time and again, having won awards for her film, TV and stage work. Her unforgettable performances in The Postman Always Rings Twice, Tootsie, Frances, Sweet Dreams, and Crimes of the Heart established her as one of the iconic actresses of the '80s, and her more recent performances on the TV shows Grey Gardens, American Horror Story, and Feud have proven her longevity in an industry that fetishizes youth. Her personal life has included relationships with ballet dancer Mikhail Baryshnikov and actor/playwright Sam Shepard, and she is the mother of three children. Here's a look at Jessica Lange then and now -- it's been quite a journey from fresh-faced model-turned-actress to the upper strata of Hollywood.

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