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Gloria DeHaven Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (4) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (4) | Trade Mark (1) | Trivia (25) | Personal Quotes (5)

Overview (4)

Date of Birth 23 July 1925Los Angeles, California, USA
Date of Death 30 July 2016Las Vegas, Nevada, USA  (stroke)
Birth NameGloria Mildred DeHaven
Height 5' 1" (1.55 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Vaudeville headliners Carter and Flora DeHaven made sure their daughter would be educated at the very best private schools. They also indulged her ambition to be in show business by packing her off to the Mar-Ken Professional School in Hollywood (1940-42). Diminutive of stature and dark-haired, budding musical star Gloria (her nickname then was "Glo") enjoyed collecting perfume, reading (her favorite book being Daphne Du Maurier) and listening to the big bands (particularly Tommy Dorsey). With her father's help (who was assistant director and a friend of Charles Chaplin), she finagled her first movie appearance -- an uncredited bit part in Modern Times (1936). Her first visible role was in the George Cukor-directed Susan and God (1940). A contemporary newspaper article quipped that the winsome lass was "a backstage baby, never a child star".

In the first place, Gloria concentrated on her singing career. Over the years she developed her own nightclub act and also enjoyed considerable success as a solo vocalist with the orchestras of Bob Crosby, Jan Savitt and Muzzy Marcellino. It was her singing which prompted Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer to sign her under contract in 1940. During the following decade, she made decent strides as a soubrette and was regularly featured as second lead in cheerful light musicals. The pick of the bunch were Thousands Cheer (1943), Step Lively (1944) (on loan to RKO, giving Frank Sinatra his first screen kiss), Two Girls and a Sailor (1944), Summer Stock (1950) (a typical role, as sister to the nominal star, in this case Judy Garland) and Three Little Words (1950) (in which she played her own mother, Flora Parker DeHaven, singing the Ruby & Kalmar standard "Who's Sorry Now?"). New York Times critic Bosley Crowther commented in in June 1944: "It's a toss-up between June Allyson and Gloria DeHaven as to which is the lovelier girl. Both sing and dance with springtime crispness and have such form and grace as are divine". Always a popular pin-up with American servicemen in World War II, Gloria was featured on the cover of 'Yank' magazine that very same month.

Gloria never quite managed to get first tier assignments and her career waned as musicals ceased to be a bankable commodity. In the early 50's, she attempted stronger dramatic roles but with only moderate success. By 1955 she had wisely turned to the stage for occasional appearances on Broadway. As late as 1989, she sang in cabaret at the Rainbow & Stars in New York. There was also a screen comeback of sorts with recurring roles in the TV soaps Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman (1976) and Ryan's Hope (1975). Add to this frequent guest spots across diverse genres, from Gunsmoke (1955) and Mannix (1967) to Murder, She Wrote (1984).

Gloria Mildred DeHaven was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1960. One of her four husbands (from 1944 to 1951) was the actor John Payne.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: I.S.Mowis

Spouse (4)

Richard W. Fincher (19 January 1966 - 9 January 1969) (divorced)
Richard W. Fincher (19 January 1957 - 27 September 1963) (divorced) (2 children)
Martin Kimmel (21 June 1953 - 25 August 1954) (divorced)
John Payne (28 December 1944 - 21 September 1951) (divorced) (2 children)

Trade Mark (1)

Her mole

Trivia (25)

Daughter of actor-director Carter DeHaven and actress Flora Parker DeHaven.
In Three Little Words (1950), she portrayed her own, real-life mother.
Mother of actor Richard DeHaven.
Sister of assistant director/unit manager Carter De Haven Jr..
MGM allegedly suspended her for refusing to do the film Good News (1947).
Daughter, Kathleen, with John Payne, born 1945. Son, Thomas, with Payne, born 1947.
Children with third husband: Harry (b. 1958) and Faith (b. 1962).
In Call Her Mom (1972), she replaced Ann Miller who in turn had replaced Cyd Charisse.
Ex-stepmother of Julie Payne.
Ex-step-grandmother of Katharine Towne.
Grandmother of actress Holly Payne.
Was host of the morning movie series "Prize Movie" on WABC-TV (Channel 7) in New York for a few years starting in 1969.
She is a conservative Republican and over the years has endorsed and supported Dwight D. Eisenhower, Richard Nixon, and Ronald Reagan.
She was taught to speak eloquent English by Joan Crawford.
In 1944 De Haven came into the makeup and hair department at MGM to wash her hair in prep for a scene she was going to shoot. Halfway into the endeavor she felt a hand push her head into the bowl and began washing her hair. When she was finished she looked up and saw that it was Marlene Dietrich who had washed her hair. Dietrich had entered the room to pick up the gold paint she was using to cover her left leg in Kismet (1944) and figured that since she was there she would give De Haven a quick hair wash since the studio beauticians had yet to arrive. De Haven was so stunned that she could hardly utter a thank you.
Made her Broadway debut in a musical version of "Seventh Heaven" opposite Ricardo Montalban.
After 22 years of marriage her show business parents, Mr. and Mrs. Carter DeHaven, divorced. They remarried shortly afterward and lived together for a year. In that year Gloria was born.
Was Frank Sinatra's first screen kiss in Step Lively (1944).
Married and divorced Richard W. Fincher twice. They were married from 1957 to 1963 and then from 1966 to 1969.
Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, for motion pictures, at 6933 Hollywood Blvd.
Child then juvenile then leading-lady actress in Hollywood. During her long and varied career she would also perform as nightclub singer, as stage actress in Broadway and London theatre and as TV actress and hostess.
"Being under contract with MGM meant having everything done for you," DeHaven told the LA Times in 1984. "There were doctors and dentists and tutors on the lot, at your beck and call, not to mention the best vocal teachers and coaches, hair dressers and costume designers. The downside of being under MGM contract was not getting a chance to branch out." The actor John Payne was featured in a role that Dick Powell turned down in the Warner Brothers' Busby Berkeley 1938 film musical "Garden of The Moon." After success in 20th Century Fox film musicals during the late 1930's and mid '40s period, the tall 6'4" handsome singer/actor John Payne at age 33 (b: 05,28,1912-d:12.06.1989, age 77) served a two-year hitch (early 1942, age 29 -to-1944 discharged at age 32) with the United States Army Air Corps as a pilot. Upon his discharge at age 32, John Payne went right back to a film-role-courting Betty Grable in the 20th Century Fox film musical "The Dolly Sisters" (released in 1945) and met 18-year-old singer/actress Gloria DeHaven during its shoot. The twosome wed in 1945 and a daughter and son were born within three years. DeHaven took time off from the screen when she married John Payne. Problems arose when Gloria insisted on continuing her career and the couple, after on and off separations, finally divorced in 1950. Her return was in the 1948 musical film flop "Summer Holiday." She continued at MGM in supporting roles in 1950's "Summer Stock" and "Three Little Words." After that, she said, "the golden age of movie film musicals had sadly ended".
Gloria DeHaven turned to television series and had a recurring role in the independent 1970s Norman Lear soap opera spoof "Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman." In 1983, Dehaven took on the recurring role of Bess Shelby (1983-1985) on the ABC daytime drama "Ryan's Hope" (1975-1989). "Thanks to the soap I've gained an entire new young fan audience who don't know who the hell Gloria DeHaven is," she told the LA Times in the 1984 interview. "They adore the character and like what I bring to the part. I mean, my major movies were in the 1940s and '50s, before some of these viewers were even born. My own contemporaries are fascinated that I've begun this sort of second career, or should I say umpteenth career, since I'm 58 and have been in show business since I was born." DeHaven returned to the big screen in the forgettable 1983 film "Bog," but scored a hit as Jack Lemmon's love interest in the 1997 romantic comedy "Out to Sea." After reinventing herself for soaps and more, the actress died at age 91, on a Saturday in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Gloria DeHaven's parents were the popular vaudevillian and stage performers Carter DeHaven and Flora Parker. She and her brother Carter DeHaven Jr., who would become a producer, would travel with their parents as they toured the theatrical circuit. DeHaven, at 10 years of age, landed a bit part in Charles Chaplin's 1936 masterpiece "Modern Times" because her father was Chaplin's assistant director on the film. At the age of 14, Gloria also had a small role in Chaplin's (released in) 1940 satire "The Great Dictator." While singing with orchestras, including, Bing Crosby's brother, Bob Crosby's band of musicians, MGM signed DeHaven, at age 15, to a film contract in mid-1940 and she appeared in "Susan and God." DeHaven appeared in several MGM musicals during the 1940's, most notably, at the time of filming, a young age of 17, 1943's "Best Foot Forward" and 1944's "Step Lively," in which she was loaned out from MGM to Howard Hughes' RKO film studio.

Personal Quotes (5)

I had the privilege of watching great actors at MGM. That was better than going to any class. Today kids struggle - they have to be waitresses and bartenders while waiting to get a break. Every hour at MGM was a joy! My years there were golden, a wonderful time! I will never regret one moment.
[on writing an autobiography] I've been asked - twice, but the only books that sell a lot are kiss and tell. I don't want people flipping through the pages of my life.
[on Nancy Reagan] She was genteel, a very private woman - and classy, not outgoing. She'd leave the moment shooting ended - while a lot of us would hang out after work.
[on Frank Sinatra] I still think that Frank Sinatra is bad-rapped. They're not so eager to tell about his generosity. We've been friends ever since that movie. I had a watch that my mother had given me, and I loved it. At the end of the film Frank gave me a pinky ring that matched it perfectly. My mother said that I couldn't accept it, but Frank spoke to her. I have no idea what he told her, but he snowed her somehow, and I kept the ring.
[on appearing, aged eleven, as Paulette Goddard's sister in Modern Times (1936)] It was silent, so we didn't have to talk. We just ate bananas and ran around in raggedy clothes and enjoyed it. I always kid about it and say I started in silent films..

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