The Annette Funicello Story
There's a wedding going on and a little girl is shy. She is brought to Annette who is in another room. She tells the girl the story of her own life. (Annette does background narration throughout the movie.)
The young Annette.
Annette's parents are going to move to California. Not everyone is happy with their plans.
The parents go to see a fortune teller.
Annette gets chicken pox during the trip.
They get to California. Annette is too shy to join in a game with other children in the neighborhood.
An older Annette after her mother has enrolled her in a dance school.
She's scared performing in front of so many people.
Annette goes ahead and performs despite her fears.
She has no idea how important this dance is as she is being watched by special men in the audience, one of them being Walt Disney and this will lead to her being on the Mickey Mouse Club.
A call is made to Annette's mother telling her Disney want's Annette to audition for a show Disney has.
Annette doesn't want to do the audition.
Surprise. The audition isn't for a dance like she expected. They want her to sing.
Walt Disney listening to Annette.
Another surprise. Her mother thought the audition had something to do with the Three Musketeers, but Annette is told she is going to be a Mouseketeer.
They rehearsed all summer and they also attended a school on the lot.
They are working on the opening dance number.
Annette gets her ears.
The first show finally gets aired.
She tells him she wants to change her last name since so many people have trouble pronouncing it right, but he says don't. He also tells her that she is getting a lot of fan mail.
She's making a public appearance along with other Mouseketeers.
Now this is a little surprising. Annette has just said she was maturing in more ways than one, and her mother hands her a new bra.
She then briefly mentions her appearance in Spin and Marty, and in the Annette Serial. Her best friend is Shelly Fabres (Johnny Angel was the song she made famous). Annette also gets a horse for her birthday.
She's talking about Walt Disney. It's obvious that her health is not good as she almost seems to have to struggle to get words out.
Disney tells her he wants to sign her to a recording and playing contract. This refers to the time she sang a song on Spin and Marty and a lot of people called up wanting to buy the (non-existant) record.
The last episode of the series is shot.
Annette on American Bandstand.
The movie does something rather intelligent; rather than have the actress sing, they have the actress mimic the performance while they have Annette's actual song playing.
Annette gets to meet Frankie Avalon. It's obvious from the start that she is attracted to him.
Annette says her first actual boyfriend was Paul Anka.
Annette and her parents find out from Paul that Dick Clark wants to do a traveling show for six weeks and he wants Annette to join them.
Paul tells Annette he is going to Europe to shoot a movie.
When Paul finally gets back he tells her he's wanted to open in Vegas. She tells him she wants to get married and have children.
She says she was eighteen at the time. It was the end of their relationship.
She gets to play a bride in a movie. She is told about a movie called Beach Party.
They're filming the movie.
Frankie's agent (Jack Gilardi) is falling for Annette. He volunteers to be Annette's agent.
He proposes later and she accepts.
She has her first child, Gina.
Then she talks about her peanut butter commercials. Then Walt Disney dies and it shakes up Annette quite badly.
Then she starts having a problem with dizziness, a forerunner of her developing MS.
She and her husband are growing far apart. She doesn't like all the show business openings and socializing that he wants her to do.
She tells her mother that she will be asking Jack for a divorce.
Frankie talks to her about doing another beach movie.
Her symptoms get worse.
She takes Gina to get a horse from Glen Holt who will end up her second husband.
Annette has married Glen. Her symptoms are getting worse, and then she and Frankie do the Back to the Beach movie.
Annette finds out she has MS.
Annette informs her immediate family but otherwise tried to keep this a secret as long as she could.
He wants to do another movie but Annette says she can't.
Annette meets Shelly Fabres and Shelly tells her people think she is drinking.
Dick Clark wants Annette and Frankie to go on a Back to the Beach tour. Frankie had already talked to her about doing another movie. She agrees to the tour.
She has trouble at the rehearsal, though, and finally admits she has MS.
She tells the public about her MS.
Letting others know helped them as well as her.
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