How the Heck Did Oprah’s Head Land on Ann-Margaret’s Body?

Here is the latest in a series of examinations into urban legends related to the world of magazines and whether they are true or false.

MAGAZINE URBAN LEGEND: TV Guide once put Oprah Winfrey’s head on Ann-Margaret’s body for a cover.

Nowadays, we’re a little more used to the idea of photoshopping, but in 1989, photoshopping was a bit more of a secret.

Not that photoshopping is new, of course. Basically as soon as they had photographs they had photoshopping.

But it wasn’t as popularly used as it is nowadays with the rise of technology like, well, PhotoShop.

So yeah, in 1989 it was certainly something that people knew existed but it was not used popularly.

So imagine people’s surprise when not only did TV Guide photo shop Oprah Winfrey on the cover of an August 1989 issue of TV Guide, they did so by putting Oprah’s head on Ann-Margaret’s body!!!!

Read on for more details!

Here’s Oprah in 1989…

Here’s Ann-Margaret in the late 1970s…

Besides the difference in figure, they’re, of course, not even the same SKIN COLOR!!!

Still, a photo editor took a publicity shot Ann-Margaret did in 1979 and added Oprah’s head to it and then added a pile of money on the bottom of the shot and you got the following…

What’s funny is that the first person to notice it was Ann-Margaret’s fashion designer, who recognized the dress rather than the body. Upon closer inspection, you could even see Margaret’s jewelry on her hand!

TV Guide apologized (particularly because they did not ask for permission from either Margaret OR Winfrey, who was not appreciative of either the body switch OR the whole “sitting on a pile of money” idea).

And the world was prepared for a whole onslaught of “heads being placed onto different bodies” magazine covers in the years to come.

The legend is…

STATUS: True

Feel free (heck, I implore you!) to write in with your suggestions for future installments! My e-mail address is bcronin@legendsrevealed.com.

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