Gentlemen Prefer Blondes: They do when they resemble the lovely Ms. Holliday. Equal parts vulnerable, fragile and alluring, she’s the blonde all women want to be and all men want to you-know. This light-haired delight can also be credited with pretty much creating the quirky bottle-blonde role that has endured in movies even to this day.
Dumb Blonde: Not at all. Holliday's first two major motion picture roles - Adam’s Rib and Born Yesterday - earned her a Golden Globe nomination and Academy Award win respectively. She would go on to snatch two further Globes for her efforts before tragically succumbing to cancer.
Gentlemen Prefer Blonds: We’re sure all flavours of the human race would generally agree that Sir Hemsworth has something undeniably eye-pleasing about him. Twinkly blue peepers and sandy blonde hair – not to mention bicep measurements to make any wannabe hunk weep into his Maximuscle shake – mean this chap’s perpetually set to stun.
Dumb Blond: Hemsworth’s obviously doing something right. After a pivotal blink-and-you’ll-miss-him turn at the beginning of J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek , he’s only gone and filled out the giant boots of thunder god Thor. He’ll be around for some time, say we.
Gentlemen Prefer Blondes: Those blokes who like their woman to come equipped with her own set of razor sharp metaphorical fangs need look no further than Stanwyck. As the archetypal ice queen in Double Indemnity , she’s got a faint whiff of the dominatrix about her – cleverly disguised under that angelic ‘do. Do not approach in a dark alley.
Dumb Blonde: Not in the slightest – Stanwyck’s double-crossing femme fatale Phyllis Dietrichson has ‘smart’ tattooed in invisible ink on her forehead. Here, blonde morphs into steely resolve and impenetrable intellect. Not bad for a blonde.
Gentlemen Prefer Blonds: White hot hair lends the villainous Roy Batty an aura of icy, alien ‘otherness’ in Ridley Scott’s unparalleled sci-fable Blade Runner . Paired with Daryl Hannah's slightly-less impressive but still 'out there' mop, these two make for a deadly duo that exceed the restrictions of their dodgy stylings.
Dumb Blond: Certainly not. Batty's movie smarts aside, Hauer has masterfully forged a varied career for himself, playing goodies and baddies with equal amounts of aplomb. He’s lost none of his touch in recent years, either: his next movie is the awesome-sounding Hobo With A Shotgun .
Gentlemen Prefer Blondes: The fellas certainly seem to be going gaga over Seyfried. Having lent her golden locks to everything from Mean Girls and Veronica Mars to Chloe and Jennifer’s Body , she’s what the girl next door wishes she looked like. Shame about the jean fetish (“I collect jeans. I don't care how expensive they are”).
Dumb Blonde: Sharp as an icepick, this one. Though she’s pandered to her teen girl audience with throwaway fluff like Dear John and Mamma Mia! , Seyfried’s proved she’s up for a few riskier roles – namely with things like the upcoming Red Riding Hood and I’m.mortal .
Gentlemen Prefer Blonds: Androgyny reigns as Pitt plays warrior Achilles in Wolfgang Peterson’s ‘historical’ epic Troy . Having stalked the gender line for much of his career (we’re still confounded by Meet Joe Black ), pretty boy Pitt goes for long, lustrous locks here as the mythical sword-swinger – and confuses a generation of heterosexual men.
Dumb Blond: Pitt has had the wherewithal to play around with his ‘do over the years, ensuring he’s never stereotyped as a ditzy blond. Variety is key here. Want wrinkles? Check out Benjamin Button . Long brunette tresses? There’s Interview With The Vampire …
Gentlemen Prefer Blondes: In 1953, that was the title on everybody’s lips, as the former Norma graduated to leading roles and forever made her stamp on Hollywood as a staple of the Golden Fifties. Today, Monroe remains an enduring icon, even over 50 years after her untimely demise. She represents something different for everybody – a fashion icon for some, a sex pin-up for others.
Dumb Blonde: The capricious schtick was all a persona, if Hollywood legend is to be believed. In reality, Monroe was a forward thinker who even created her own production company.
Gentlemen Prefer Blondes: Though she’s a veritable chameleon in the hair department, Scarlett really hit the big time when she flushed her mousy brown down the drain and embraced the hot blonde of a true starlet. Now a frequent resident of many Sexiest Women In The World lists.
Dumb Blonde: Always the reluctant pulse-raiser, there’s never any doubt that Johansson’s IQ is 100 times higher than most people in her vicinity on any given day. She’s balanced indie flicks with big budget actioners, almost never compromising her raw talent. She even married Hollywood hunk Ryan Reynolds. Smart chick.
Gentlemen Prefer Blondes: The ‘30s belonged to Marlene. Snapped up by Hollywood execs who were stunned by her performance in The Blue Angel , Marlene’s beauty was renowned the globe round. Pairing striking European features with multi-carat locks, she climbed the ladder to become one of the highest-paid actresses of the ‘30s.
Dumb Blonde: Hardly. All blonde myths go out the window when it comes to Dietrich, who kept her career bobbing along nicely by continually re-shuffling her image. Her enduring popularity is evident in the fact that the AFI named her the ninth greatest female star of all time…
Gentlemen Prefer Blonds: Phillippe had a million hearts hammering when he took a steamy shower and flounced around in a wife-beater for slasher flick I Know What You Did Last Summer back in 1997. But it was his dirty behaviour two years later with Sarah Michelle Gellar in Cruel Intentions that got collars really flapping. Saucy stuff.
Dumb Blond: Cynical play for blond domination? Or genuine love at first highlight? Either way, Phillippe’s marriage to fellow flaxen-haired beauty Reese Witherspoon went up in flames after nine years. The mirror probably wasn't big enough for the both of 'em.
Gentlemen Prefer Blondes: South Africa’s hottest export since trading began, Theron has the looks and the motion to create quite a commotion. To her credit, she’s played her natural beauty down as much as possible. Though, we do have to cross our legs every time that damned Christian Dior advert comes on.
Dumb Blonde: She’s made some duff movie decisions ( The Italian Job, Æon Flux ), but there’s no denying that she’s given solid gold turns in everything from The Road and The Burning Plain to North Country . Not forgetting, of course, that Oscar-winning uglification for Monster .
Gentlemen Prefer Blondes: Considering she worked in the movie business for just five short years, Kelly made quite the impact. Straying from the dumb blonde archetype, she made her mark by playing sophisticated modern young women in films like Rear Window, To Catch A Thief and High Noon . She retired from acting aged just 26.
Dumb Blonde: Depends entirely on your perspective. Should Kelly have continued her acting career instead of taking up residence as Princess Grace of Monaco? Looking at her platinum acting CV it’s hard to argue against her retirement – why ruin something perfect? Still, we can’t help but wonder what could have been…
Gentlemen Prefer Blonds: After playing a raft of goody-two-shoe roles on Swedish TV, the towering Scandinavian graduated to Hollywood where his talents have been put to use for one of the sexiest TV shows in years – True Blood . Frequently in the buff, Skars has plenty of opportunities to stun on the small screen.
Dumb Blond: Inevitably, the big screen is calling. And Skars has wasted no time signing up for some decidedly controversial projects – namely the remake of Straw Dogs , and Peter Berg’s board game adap Battleship . Will either pay off? We can but hope.
Gentlemen Prefer Blondes: Fitting that Ms. Watts is set to play Marilyn Monroe in 2012’s biopic Blonde – the Brit-born Aussie displays spookily similar qualities to the ‘50s bombshell. Gorgeous white hot locks, winning smile, fragile exterior which belies a fierce and determined inner resolve...
Dumb Blonde: Another cliché-shatterer, Watts has paired her delicate beauty with some of the most interesting, complex roles cinema has offered in recent years. Ignoring the Ring missteps, there’s no dissing her smouldering turns in Mulholland Dr., 21 Grams and Eastern Promises . A canny businesswoman too, then – just like Marilyn.
Gentlemen Prefer Blonds: Three words; Into The Blue . Stripping off to just about nothing alongside the equally retina-frying (but sadly mostly non-blonde) Jessica Alba, Walker’s oceanic eyes and rippling sandy waves marked him out as a blond to reckon with in that daft action flick.
Dumb Blond: True, Walker’s stuck to pretty brainless fare – four whole Fast And Furious movies, the aforementioned Alba pair-up, Road Kill – but he’s had a go at more interesting fare with Pleasantville and Flags Of Our Fathers . Perhaps time will be kind to him.