27 February 2012

Renate Hütte

Sexy German actress Renate Hütte (1941-2009) appeared under the names of Renate Hutter and Rena Horten in several German and American films and TV series of the 1960s. The big busted blonde dated and worked with sexploitation director Russ Meyer. Later, she worked as a hair stylist for Cher.

Renate Hütte, Britt Lindberg
German postcard by Krüger, no. 902/358. Photo: Bernard of Hollywood. Renate Hütte and Britt Lindström in Fanny Hill (1964).

Fanny Hill

Renate Hütte was born in 1941 as Renate Elvira Hutte. She grew up in Berlin-Steglitz and the beautiful blonde was chosen Miss Berlin 1960.

She made her film debut as Renate Hutter with a bit part in the German-French-Italian coproduction Sherlock Holmes und das Halsband des Todes/Sherlock Holmes and the Deadly Necklace (Terence Fisher, 1962) starring Christopher Lee.

She also had a small part in the Edgar Wallace Krimi Zimmer 13/Room 13 (Harald Reinl, 1964) starring Joachim Fuchsberger.

That year she also played a prostitute in the erotic farce Fanny Hill (1964), featuring Letícia Román and directed by American sexploitation master Russ Meyer. According to IMDb she was from now on credited as Rena Horten, but on the Krüger postcard above with a still from this film, she was still called Renate Hütte.

Renate dated director Russ Meyer at the time, and moved with him to the USA.

Letícia Román
German postcard by Krüger, no. 902/302. Photo: Bernard of Hollywood / CCC-Zugsmith Co-produktion. Letícia Román in Fanny Hill (1964).

Bashing Religion and Hypocrites

Renate Hütte - or from now on Rena Horten - then had a big part in Meyer’s Mudhoney (Russ Meyer, 1965). She played the larger role of the gentle Eula, who, together with her sister, portrayed by Lorna Maitland, is encouraged by their mother to prostitute themselves. Meyer rewrote the role especially for Horten and made her (because of her German accent) deaf and dumb. On the set she refused to shoot her nude scene with John Furlong in front of the entire crew, so Meyer had to film this scene alone.

At IMDb, Michael Elliott reviews: “Once again we've got a pretty well made little film that's certainly Meyer's way of bashing religion and hypocrites. The ‘drama’ works well but there are still a few laughs as well as a limited amount of nudity.” However, the film was a financial failure.

According to an IMDb reviewer, Meyer later said: "I made a gamble with Mudhoney and I failed. The only reason I made Mudhoney was I was in love with a girl named Rena (Rena Horten, who plays Eula) I should have not made the film." Collaborator Roger Ebert disagreed, calling it Meyer's neglected masterpiece and "his most interesting, most ambitious, most complex and longest independent production."

Horten played small parts in American B-films, such as the obscure teenage musical Out of Sight (Lennie Weinrib, 1966), and the action comedy Murderers' Row (Henry Levin, 1966) starring Dean Martin as top agent Matt Helm.

She also appeared as eye candy in some TV series, including Mission: Impossible (1969) and It Takes a Thief (1969) with Robert Wagner. She was also Beautiful girl # 2 in an episode of the TV series The Odd Couple (1971) with Tony Randall and appeared with Christopher Connelly in an episode of the TV series The Man and the City (1971).

Horten also worked on Meyer's biker filmMotorpsycho (Russ Meyer, 1965), but now behind the camera as a make-up specialist. The separation from Meyer soon followed. According to Meyer's memory, she later lived in Hollywood with another director.

According to IMDb, she later worked as a hair stylist for Cher. She styler Cher's hair for The Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour (1971-1974), Cher (1975) and The Sonny and Cher Show (1976-1977).

Rena Horten died in 2009 in Scottsdale, Arizona, USA. She was 68.

Robert Wagner
Robert Wagner. Italian postcard in the series Artisti di Sempre by Ed. ris. Rotalfoto S.p.A., Milano, no. 287.

Sources: Michael Elliott (IMDb), Getty Images, Wikipedia (German), and IMDb.

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