Hollywood fashion maven Mr. Blackwell dies

Mon Oct 20, 2008 11:51am EDT
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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Mr. Blackwell, the fashion maven whose annual "worst-dressed" list could be the bane of Hollywood celebrities, has died at age 86, according to media reports on Monday.

Richard Blackwell, born Richard Selzer, had been in failing health for some time and in August was reported to be in a coma after a fall at his Los Angeles home.

The Los Angeles Times quoted his publicist Harlan Boll as saying the former actor and fashion designer died on Sunday afternoon in hospital of complications from an intestinal infection.

Blackwell issued his "worst-dressed" list for 48 years and it became watched around the world as much for his caustic quips about the stars' fashion as for who made the list.

Last year he put British "Spice Girls" singer Victoria "Posh Spice" Beckham at the top of his list, saying: "...in one skinny-mini monstrosity after another, pouty 'Posh' Beckham can really wreck-em."

In the No. 2 spot was British soul singer Amy Winehouse and just behind was U.S. actress Mary-Kate Olsen who, he said, "resembles a tattered toothpick trapped in a hurricane."

For 35 years, Blackwell had his own clothing line. He was also a costume designer who worked with Hollywood stars such as Jayne Mansfield and Jane Russell.

(Writing by Belinda Goldsmith; Editing by Eric Walsh)

<p>Mr. Blackwell, fashion and style commentator best known for his "Worst Dressed List," arrives at the Project Angel Food Angel Awards 2002, August 17, 2002 in Los Angeles. REUTERS/Fred Prouser FSP/HB</p>