There is no author who better personified the trash novel of the 1970s and 1980s than Jackie Collins (Jacqueline Susann was the one who had the 60s on lock with Valley of the Dolls). Discussing frank subject matters ranging from gold digging bitches to the perversity of the Hollywood film industry, Collins had scandal encapsulated on paper better than anyone else.
When Collins moved to Los Angeles from her native Britain in the 80s, she summed it up best by stating, “If you wish to be successful, there is a place you should be at a certain time. And Los Angeles in the 1980s was it.” Considering her avid chronicling of the city’s seedy underbelly, it only made sense that she would find her way there eventually. In many ways, she was the original Bret Easton Ellis, shedding a light on the dirty and disgusting ways of L.A. humanity with a tongue-in-cheek approach.
In addition to many of her books being adapted into films, including The Stud and The Bitch, both starring her sister, Joan, Jackie also wrote her own original screenplay for the movie Yesterday’s Hero, starring Ian McShane and Suzanne Somers. Her prolific nature led her to write the Lucky Santangelo book series, which consisted of Chances, Lucky, Lady Boss, Vendetta: Lucky’s Revenge, Dangerous Kiss, Drop Dead Beautiful, Goddess of Vengeance, Confessions of a Wild Child and the forthcoming The Santangelos.
Collins’ death on September 19th came as a shock to many, who had no idea she was suffering from stage 4 breast cancer for over six years before confessing to her sister that she had it about two weeks before she passed away. Although Jackie probably had a few novels still left in her, she can rest in peace knowing her legacy lives on–and that she got to have an affair with Brando in his prime (the age difference between them at the time probably serving as the springboard to many of her stories).