Saturday 24 August 2019


From meditation to nip and tuck, the living legends of Hollywood Royalty reveal their secrets of immortality, says Anna Coogan

Anna Coogan

Award-winning choreographer Dame Gillian Lynne, aged 88, has released an exercise DVD for "oldies", arguing that it is "absolute death" to sit around doing the crossword.

Best known for her work on Cats and Phantom of the Opera, Lynne filmed the video over the past decade with her husband, and has aimed it at "ancient people who haven't given up yet." Entitled Longevity Through Exercise, it encourages people over the age of 50 to look after their bodies into old age. The choreographer who danced with Sadler's Wells Ballet from the 1940s and went to work with Lord Lloyd-Webber and Sir Cameron Mackintosh has said of the video: "This isn't about showing off or having everyone get their leg above their head. It's about how to stay alive longer, how to talk to your body and control it when you get ill."

Jane Seymour (63)

Seymour believes Pilates is perfect for anyone who has suffered an injury, as she did in her teens when knee injuries ended her ballet career.

She also builds up her body strength by using a Gyrotonic machine, which has pulleys and straps, and it's almost like you're churning milk.

She has said of her keep fit regime: "I like to fast walk on the beach, and I love to play tennis, but I have to be careful about tennis elbow and my knees. And I love to play golf, although it's not necessarily a good movement with my back issues, but Pilates allows me to play. I like to do a little bit of yoga, but I don't go to classes that often."

Roger Moore (86)

Moore is best known for playing James Bond in seven films between 1973 and 1985, and is reaping the benefits of a lifetime of keeping fit. The actor has said: "All my life I've exercised every morning, doing push-ups and sit-ups and callisthenics. When I was Bond I had to be 100 per cent fit. That was purely to make sure I got paid on Fridays."

He rarely drinks, and said: "I rarely drink hard liquor, only a couple of times a year when my wife and I stop at Maison Pic in Valence. We have a dry martini – but not vodka, I like gin martini, Tanqueray gin."

Tina Turner (74)

Turner, who last year married husband Erwin Bach (58), maintains her figure by not eating after 6pm, drinking lots of water and, of course, dancing. She believes in moderation and has said: "I don't abuse myself with sweets, sugars, cakes and fat. I eat healthily. The pleasure of life is dinner." Her preference is for wholesome food rather than the fatty fried food of her childhood in the southern United States. She prefers to eat a combination of Thai and Italian food most of the time, and limits high-carb pasta to twice a week. A lover of a good brekkie, she has said: "I eat a breakfast of banana, kiwi and melon, and brown German bread."

Al Pacino (73)

The Manhattan resident who is dating actress Lucila Sola (33) has spoken proudly about how great his dad Sal looked until his death in 2005, and has said: "I hope I have good genes." The star of such classics as The Godfather, Scent of a Woman, and Scarface, has been quoted as saying about his fitness regime: "Whenever I get the urge to exercise, I lie down until it passes." Yet you only have to look at photos of Al escorting his gorgeous young girlfriend around town to see his fabulous smile – and his amazingly shiny white teeth. Having a set of terrific gnashers in your seventies is definitely one way to hold back the clock and look younger than your years.

Dustin Hoffman (76)

Dustin Hoffman made his directorial debut last year with the film Quartet in which Maggie Smith and Billy Connolly starred – proving there are still some firsts to look forward to in your seventies. The Hollywood legend has said: "I try to get older as slowly as possible. If you don't smoke, if you keep your weight down, that's a big part."

A happy marriage has also been a big factor in his weathering the years so very well – he's been married to businesswoman Lisa Hoffman for the past 34 years and the couple have four children together.

Richard Gere (64)

He looks more serene the older he gets, and the secret behind Richard Gere's youthful appearance could well be daily meditation. Whether he's sitting cross-legged in a temple in Indonesia or on the beach in St Barts or on a film set in Los Angeles, Gere meditates daily to keep his mind healthy. "It helps me set my motivation for the day," Gere, a longtime Buddhist, told USA Today. The ancient practice of meditation can help reduce stress, pain and high blood pressure.

Harrison Ford (71)

"He's never let himself become a lost cause," is how one fitness trainer described Indiana Jones star Ford, who throughout his career has done most of his own stunts, including gruelling fight scenes. Harrison has kept up regular physical workouts down through the decades, so much so that now in his seventies he has been described as "extremely strong and active."

And when getting in extra-fit shape for the big screen, he reportedly goes on a strict high protein diet, and eats lots of fish and vegetables.

Raquel Welch (73)

Raquel is shapely in her seventies thanks to a gluten-free, low-carb diet and daily workouts. She also reportedly works out six days a week, doing two hours of yoga, weight training and cardio exercise. And to avoid weight gain, she follows a strict diet that excludes gluten, salt, sugar and caffeine. To prove there's no such thing as dressing your age when you've got sensational curves, she arrived at the Costume Designers Guild Awards red carpet in Beverly Hills in February in an eye catching little black dress and stole the show.

Martha Stewart (72)

The businesswoman has been quoted as saying: "I haven't had facial surgery yet, but I did get Juvederm filler after my dog bashed my lip and split it open. I tried Botox. It works for certain things, like for skin under the chin, but I don't want a taut jawline and a quizzical look. Stewart credits avoiding her hairbrush for her lustrous hair. "My hair is actually thicker now and grows faster than it did probably 25 years ago. On the weekend, I don't even like to brush it. I get screamed at by my daughter. And I don't like hair spray."

Robert De Niro (70)

Nobody is excluded from feeling their age, not even a Hollywood legend and Robert De Niro has said: "It's a given, there's nothing you can do about it, so you may as well make fun of it. It's interesting when you walk down the street and you see younger people and they ignore you – their peripheral vision sees that you're one or two generations older than they are, so they're not interested. Otherwise, the grey hair... you become a part of another class of person."

Oscar winner Fonda looks radiant thanks to a lifetime of healthy eating and regular workouts. She freely admits to having used cosmetic surgery to maintain her good looks. At age 72, she had cosmetic surgery on her jawline and under her eyes so that her face would look less "droopy." She doesn't regret it. "I felt pretty terrific, but I always looked tired," she said. "I got tired of not looking like how I felt." Money has helped her keep up appearances.

"Being able to have good skin care and facials when I need it has been important," she said.

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