Graeme Blundell (on bike as Alvin Purple)

Rennie Ellisc. 1973

National Portrait Gallery

National Portrait Gallery
Canberra, Australia

A sequence of Alvin at school in which schoolgirls fight for his attentions and run after him as he flees on his bike sets up the film’s premise: described in Man magazine as the ‘hilarious adventures of a male stud, Alvin . . . a fairly ordinary and inoffensive sort of bloke, except that . . . women find him irresistible’. Made possible by a change in censorship laws, Alvin was a hit. Documentary photographer Rennie Ellis was also on hand to capture the film’s climatic chase sequence in which a bevy of ‘hot-eyed damsels’ chase Alvin, wearing nothing but a wig and his underpants, through Melbourne’s CBD. Post-Alvin, Blundell found himself an unexpected pin-up, and was pursued in the streets by fans.

Show lessRead more
  • Title: Graeme Blundell (on bike as Alvin Purple)
  • Creator: Rennie Ellis
  • Date Created: c. 1973
  • Provenance: National Portrait Gallery, Canberra, Purchased 2006 © Rennie Ellis Photographic Archive
  • Rights: https://www.portrait.gov.au/form-image-request.php
  • External Link: https://www.portrait.gov.au/portraits/2006.70