Oh, Santa Monica — where former Boston mobsters and Iceland beauty queens go to co-retire in the lovely sea breeze.
The Boston Globe is reporting that Anna Bjornsdottir, Miss Iceland 1974 turned graphic designer and yoga instructor (so Santa Monica), was neighbors with most-wanted crime boss James “Whitey” Bulger before returning to Reykjavik earlier this year. She even allegedly conspired with Bulger's live-in girlfriend, the notorious Catherine Grieg, on a Good Samaritan mission to save a stray cat!
Aw. But all neighborly loyalties melted away when Bjornsdottir saw the couple on CNN:
In the end, it wasn't a dogged agent, a bounty hunter, or even a police officer making a routine traffic stop who spotted fugitive gangster James “Whitey'' Bulger.
It was the flirty blonde from an old shaving cream commercial, an actress who once pleaded in a B-movie role, “I beg you, let me lead you to him.''
It is a line that sounds strangely prophetic, today.
Anna Bjornsdottir, who was crowned as Miss Iceland in 1974, called the FBI from her native Iceland on June 21, to report that the fugitive gangster and his girlfriend could be found in California, 4,300 miles away. The couple, she said, used to live near her in Santa Monica.
All very romantic, no? We were kind of hoping it was Bjork who had called in the $2 million tip, but Bjornsdottir — who Hollywood-ized her name to Anna Bjorn while working here in the 1980s — is certainly the next best thing.
Her IMDB resume includes small parts in such flops as “More American Graffiti” and “The Sword and the Sorcerer,” as well as more memorable roles in two sexed-up Noxzema commercials — all of which are sadly absent from the Tubes. (Let us know if you can find her anywhere.) But according to this People article from 1980, Bjorn was once the cream of L.A.'s modeling scene:
Anna Bjorn and Jakob Magnusson's marriage faces more threats than most. At 25, Bjorn is one of the world's most beautiful and successful models. She earns more than $2,000 a day for her “Take it off” and “Trust Anna” Noxzema commercials (following in the historic tradition of Noxzema girls Gunilla Knutson and Farrah Fawcett) and for the Sassoon ads in which she swirls her blond hair.
At that time, the Globe reports, Bjornsdottir was living with Magnusson (a rock star who has since died) in “the Los Angeles area.” She didn't get a house in Santa Monica with new husband Halldor Gudmundsson until about 10 years ago — “where they stayed for months at a time in the same neighborhood as Bulger and Catherine Greig.”
Guess this Icelandic cherub learned the hard way that no quaint, unassuming Third Street apartment is safe from sharing a wall stashed with hundreds of thousands of dollars and dozens of business-time guns.
Or the easy way, seeing as she came out with $2 million for her keen eye and honesty. All that, and legs for days: