David Copperfield
 
 

Adrian

Gilbert Adrian

1903 - 1959

US film costume designer.


Alexander Alekhine Aleksandr Alexandrovich Alyokhin
1892 - 1946

Russian chess player.


Elizabeth Arden Florence Lewis (nee Graham)
1884 - 1966
Canada

Famous cosmetician.


Barney Barnato Barnett Isaacs
Born: 1897
London
Died: 1987

Financier and rogue. Made his first fortune in diamonds in South Africa, returning to England to become king of the market in gold shares. His visiting card bore the inscription "I'll stand you a drink, but I won't lend you a fiver". Committed suicide by throwing himself overboard ship en route to England.


Lionel Bart Lionel Begleiter
Born: 1930

Lyricist and composer.


Busby Berkeley William Berkeley Enos
Born: 29 November 1895
Los Angeles
Died: 14 March 1976

Choreographer of musicals. Began his career in the military conducting and directing parades. His first big break was with "42nd Street", he later directed Gene Kelly in his first movie.


Irving Berlin Israel Isidore Baline
Born: 11 May 1888
Eastern Russia
Died: 22 September 1989

Producer of "White Christmas", "Always", "Anything You Can Do I Can Do Better", "There's No Business Like Show Business", "Puttin' On The Ritz" and "God Bless America". Won an Academy Award for Best Song of the Year for "White Christmas" in 1942.


Leonard Bernstein Louis Bernstein
Born: 25 August 1918
Lawrence, Mass
Died: 14 October 1990

Greatest Triumph: Composer of West Side Story. Starring Natalie Wood


Harry Blackstone Henri Bouton
1855 - 1965

US Magician


Capability Brown Lancelot Brown
1715 - 1783
Kirkharle, Northumberland

Legendary English Landscape Gardener. Earned the nickname "Capability" from his habit of telling clients that their gardens had "great capabilities".


Carlos Illich Ramiraz Sanchez
Born: 1946

Venezuelan terrorist, anti-Israeli killer.


David Copperfield David Kotkin
Metuchen, New Jersey

One of the richest entertainers in the world, earning USD$20 million per year. Engaged for 6 years to supermodel Claudia Schiffer, the couple split in 1999. Knighted by the French government and the only living illusionist to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.


Rodney Dangerfield Jacob Cohen
Born: 22 November 1921
Babylon, New York
Died: 5 October 2004
LA, California

Nightclub, television and movie comedian. Star of "Caddyshack" (1980). Best known for his catch-cry "I don't get no respect".


Pablo Escobar Pablo Emilio Escobar Gaviria
Born: 1 December 1949
Colombia
Died: 2 December 1993

The billionaire "Mr Big" of Cocaine Trafficking in Colombia. Sometimes referred to as the greatest outlaw in history. In the mid-80s he owned 19 residences, each with a helipad. In August 1989 he had a presidential candidate assassinated. Then, in an attempt to assassinate his successor, Pablo's men planted a bomb on a plane, killing everyone on board, including two Americans. He was shot and killed by Colombian Government troops on 2nd December 1993.


Dame Margot Fonteyn Margaret Hookman
1919 - 1991
Surrey, England

Ballet dancer who's most famous role was Aurora in "The Sleeping Beauty".


George Gershwin Jacob Gershvin
Born: 26 September 1898
Brooklyn, New York
Died: 11 July 1937

Orginally Gershovitz, was probably changed to Gershvin by an immigration official. Gershwin's song "Swanee" was performed by Al Jolson and became one of the first phonograph records every made. Gershwin produced "Rhapsody in Blue" in one month. Some of his most memorable work includes "I Got Rhythm" and "Let's Call The Whole Thing Off".


El Greco Domenikos Theotokopoulos
Born: 1541
Candia, Crete
Died: 1614

Painter. His works were largely ignored until the beginning of the 20th century, now he is considered to be one of the inspired geniuses of Western Art.


Richard James Hart James Vincenzo Capone
Born: 1892
Chicago
Died: 1 October 1952

A lawman who turned out to be the oldest brother of one Al Capone.


Benny Hill Alfred Hawthorne Hill
Born: 25 January 1925
England
Died: 18 April 1992

Best known for his baudy antics in "The Benny Hill Show" and "Ernie, (the fastest milkman in the west)".


Perez Hilton Mario Armando Lavandeira, Jr.
Born: 23 March 1978
Miami, Florida US

Creator or the hugely successful celebrity and gossip blog perezhilton.com.


Harry Houdini Ehrich Weiss
Born: 24 March 1874
Budapest, Hungary
Died: 31 October 1926

The world's most famous magician, escape artist, and stuntman, of all time. Even starred in 5 silent films.


Garri Kasparov Garik Weinstein
Born: 13 April 1963
Baku, Soviet Union

Russian and World Chess Champion. Changed to his mother's maiden name (Kasparova) in 1970s.


Larry King Larry Zeigler
Born: 19 November 1933
New York, USA

Born Lawrence Leibel Harvey Zeiger, changed his name on a whim during his first day on the job as a radio DJ.


Evel Knievel Robert Craig Knievel
Born: 17 October 1938
Butte, Montana

Stuntman and motocycle daredevil. More than USD$300 million has been generated through Evel Knievel toys and accessories.


David Koresh Vernon Wayne Howell
Born: 1959
Houston, Texas
Died: 19 April 1993
Waco, Texas

Leader of the Branch Davidians, changing his name for "publicity and business reasons". Responsible for the 51 day seige at Waco in which dozens of his followers and himself perished on April 19, 1993. Son of a 15 year old mother, he never knew his father and was raised by his grandparents. Dyslexic and a bad student, he dropped out of high school, but had musical ability and a strong interest in the Bible.


Mutt Lange Robert John Lange
Born: 1949
Belfast, New Zealand

One of rock's most popular yet media-reclusive record producers of the last 20 years, and ex-husband of country star Shania Twain. Has produced for: Shania Twain, Def Leppard, Bryan Adams, AC/DC, The Cars, Britney Spears, Backstreet Boys, Foreigner, Billy Ocean, Brian White, The Corrs, Céline Dion, Michael Bolton, Tina Turner, Graham Parker, Boomtown Rats, XTC, The Records, The Outlaws, Savoy Brown, and The Motors, among others. In addition, he has written/co-written songs for many of these artists, and others, including Huey Lewis and the News, Starship, Dionne Warwick, Heart, Billy Ray Cyrus, Blackhawk, Lari White (with Toby Keith), and Diamond Rio.


Estee Lauder Josephine Esther Mentzer

Reponsible for transforming beauty into big business by cultivating classy sales methods and giving away samples.


Ralph Lauren Ralph Lifshitz
Born: October 14, 1939
Bronx, New York

Ralph Lauren has become the epitome of classic fashion. With product lines such as Polo/Ralph Lauren for Men, Ralph Lauren for Women, Double RL, Ralph Lauren Home, and even Ralph Lauren paint. One would think that Lauren attended fashion design school, but he actually studied business at City College in Manhattan, and dropped out short of receiving his business degree. Student by night, Lauren would work by day at two glove companies as a salesman. He then worked for a tie manufacturer named A. Rivetz & Co., which ultimately led to the fashion empire he leads today. While working at A. Rivetz & Co., Lauren began designing wide ties, which spawned his first entrepreneurial career. With his tie designs and a USD$50,000 loan, Lauren founded the company Polo Fashions in 1968. Along with his older brother, he chose the name Polo because of the power, style and intrigue that the brand has always been associated with.


Le Corbusier
Charles Edouard Jeanneret
Born: 1887
Switzerland
Died: 1965

Influential architect, artist, and urban planner of the 20th century. Born in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland.

He left school at age 13 to learn the trade of engraving watch faces. Encouraged by a local art teacher he taught himself architecture, travelling throughout Europe to observe architectural styles. Settling in Paris in 1917, he met Ozenfant, who introduced him to Purism, and with whom he collaborated in writing several articles under his pseudonym (the name of a relative on his father's side). His main interest was large urban projects and city-planning. Many of his designs were rejected, but they influenced other architects throughout the world. Examples of his work are the Unité d'habitation, Marseille (1945--50); Chandigarh, the new capital of the Punjab; the Swiss Dormitory in the Cité Universitaire in Paris; Exposition Pavilion in Zürich, Villa Savoye, Poissy, France; and Notre-Dame-du-Haut, Ronchamp, France.


Ben Lexcen Robert Miller
Born: 1936
Newcastle, NSW, Australia
Died: May 1 1988
Sydney, NSW, Australia

Australian yachtsman and marine architect who designed Australia II, the first non-American yacht to win (1983) the prestigious America's Cup in the 132-year history of the race. When he decided to abandon his manufacturing enterprise, he left his real name with it, and had a friend's computer create a new six-letter surname for him.


Lucky Luciano Salvatore Lucania
Born: 24 November 1897
Died: 26 January 1962

Mafia figure, responsible for the death of Dutch Schultz, died of a heart attack in Naples, Italy airport.


Jonnie Marbles Jonathon May-Bowles

Ms Megabyte Yvonne Adele

IT guru in Australia, having adapted "PC For Dummies" for Australia.


Nicholas II
Nikolay Aleksandrovich Romanov

The Russian Tsar of the Romanov family that ruled Russia for 304 years until 1917.


Frank Oz Frank Oznowicz
Born: 25 May 1944

Puppeteer and director. Spotted by Jim Henson of "The Muppets" fame. He also worked on the final two movies of the (original) Star Wars Trilogy, "The Empire Strikes Back" and "Return of the Jedi". He controlled the puppet "Yoda" and also provided the voice. He brought to life "Miss Piggy", "Fozzy Bear" and "Cookie Monster". He also made a cameo appearance as a Prison Warden in the "Blues Brothers".


(Colonel) Tom Parker Andreas Cornelius van Kuijk
Born: 26 January 1909
Died: 21 January 1997

Best known as Elvis Presley's manager. A cigar chewing carnival huckster who was an illegal immigrant to the USA.


Kim Philby Harold Adrian Russell Philby
Born: 1 January 1921
London, England
Died: 11 May 1988 in Moscow.

British intelligence officer until 1951 and the most successful Soviet double agent of the Cold War period.


Andre Previn Andreas Ludwig Priwin
Born: 6 April 1929
Berlin

Conductor/composer, once married to actress Mia Farrow (with whom he had twins). His most recent major work is "A Streetcar Named Desire", which is based on the play be Tennessee Williams, the film version of which starred Vivien Leigh, directed by Elia Kazan.


Queen Elizabeth II Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Windsor
21 April 1926
London, England

Best known as the Queen of England.


Man Ray Emmanuel Rudnitsky

American surrealist painter and photograper and one of the first artists to explore abstract photography. Changed his name in art school to avoid the taunts of his fellow students.


(The) Red Baron Manfred Albrecht Freiherr von Richthofen
Born: 2 May 1892
Breslau, Germany
Died: 21 April 1918

Credited with 80 planes and 127 air personnel either killed or captured. Died in the skies over Vaux sur Somme, France.


Roy Rene Harry van der Sluys
Born: 1892
Adelaide, Australia
Died: 1954

One of Australia's greatest and best-loved comedians. A comic singer and dancer in surburban halls around Melbourne, adopting his Jewish characterisation while working for Fuller's vaudeville circuit.


Brian Blaine Reynolds Hyman (Hy) Peskin
Born: 5 November 1915
Brooklyn, New York
Died: 2 June 2005
Herzliya, Israel

One of the world's greatest sports photographers between the 1940s and 1960s. Known for his revolutionary images of baseball, golf, basketball and boxing. Became one of Sports Illustrated's first photographers in 1954.


Nicole Richie Nicole Escovedo
Born: 21 September 1981
California, USA

TV personality, fashion designer. First claim to fame was as the adopted daughter of singer Lionel Richie. Starred in the reality TV series "The Simple Life" with best friend Paris Hilton. Nicole is also a successful fashion designer.


Robert Ripley LeRoy Ripley
Born: 25 December 1890
Santa Rosa, California
Died: 27 May 1949

Cartoonist/Adventurer. Best known as the founder of "Ripley's Believe It Or Not!" a cartoon panel that featured true-life oddities from around the globe. He became famous as a globe trotting adventurer.


Joan Rivers Joan Molinsky
Born: 8 June 1933
Brooklyn, New York

Writer, comedienne, and talk-show host with the catch-phrase "Can we talk?".


Ned Rocknroll Ned Abel Smith

Most famous for being married to Kate Winslet, and being the nephew of Sir Richard Branson.


Ruby Rose Ruby Rose Langenheim
Born: 20 March 1986
Melbourne, Australia

Artie Shaw Arthur Jacob Arshawsky
Born: 23 May 1910
New York

Enigmatic, daring and adventurous swing-era bandleader. An intellectual, he hated public life, and the music industry. He formed ten orchestras, and was married eight times, his wives including movie stars Ava Gardner, and Lana Turner. Billie Holiday was a featured singer in one of his big-bands.


Dutch Schultz Arthur Flegenheimer
Born: 6 August 1902
Bronx
Died: 24 October 1935

The notorious 1920s and '30s New York gangster. Supposedly responsible for up to 135 murders and considered one of the most vicious gangsters of all time. A hit was put on his life by Members of the Syndicate, Lucky Luciano's gang shot him. He survived for two days in hospital where he babbled and raved like a lunatic before dying of internal bleeding about his $7 million fortune buried in upstate New York. Find it and a fortune said to be worth more than $50 million could be yours.


Te Rangi Hiroa Also known as Sir Peter Buck
1877 - 1951
Taranaki, New Zealand

Anthropoligist, medical doctor, politician. He was the first Maori medical student, and went on to become an internationally honoured anthropologist, ending his career as director of the Biship Museum in Hawaii. He was also a successful doctor, politician, soldier and leader of the Maori people.


Timbaland
Tim Mosley
Born: March 10, 1971
Richmond, Virginia

Extremely popular producer of acts such as: Aaliyah, Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott, Ginuwine, Jodeci, SWV, Busta Rhymes, Jay-Z, June Elliot, and All Saints. He has also released a solo album and a joint effort with Magoo.


Justin de Villeneuve Nigel John Davies

Discoverer and mentor of Twiggy.


Dita Von Teese

Heather Renée Sweet
Born: 28 September 1972
Michigan, USA

Burlesque dancer, model, costume designer, author, actress. Once married to Marilyn Manson.


Andy Warhol Andrew Warhola
Born: 6 August 1928
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Died: 22 February 1987 (complications from gallbladder surgery)

Artist/Filmmaker. Best known as the Campbell's Soup can artist and for his statement: "In the future everyone will be world-famous for fifteen minutes." Just recently 10 of his 250 "Marilyn" series (see Marilyn Monroe) sold at auction for USD$700,000.


Frank Lloyd Wright Frank Lincoln Wright
Born: 8 June 1867
Richland Center, Wisconsin
Died: 9 April 1959

Architect. Considered to be the most influential architect of the 20th century. Designed The Johnson Wax Museum and the Guggenheim Museum.


Dr James Wright Dr John Knight

Original "TV Doctor" in Australia