Lois Nettleton was a versatile and accomplished actress who appeared on stage, in films and on TV in her long career. The former Miss Chicago of 1948 beauty pageant contest winner was born in Oak Park, Illinois, She studied acting at Chicago's Goodman Theatre and then at the Actors' Studio in New York City, where she made her Broadway debut in 1949's "The Biggest Thief in Town" under the stage name of "Lydia Scott" (her given name, she felt, was too plain and sounded "schoolmarmy").
Nettleton was Barbara Bel Geddes's understudy in the role of "Maggie the Cat" in the original 1955 Broadway production of Tennessee Williams Pulitzer-Prize winning "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof", staged by Elia Kazan. Occasionally, she got to play "Maggie", herself. A supremely talented stage actress, she won the prestigious Clarence Derwent Award for her acting in "God and Kate Murphy".
Lois Nettleton was married to the one and only Jean Shepherd, the radio and television humorist and writer, for seven years. Nettleton and Shepherd clicked when she called the humorist's nightly radio show at WOR in the 1950s; the beguiled Shepherd broadcast their telephone conversations on the air. They appeared together in Shepherd's off-Broadway play "Look Charlie" in 1959.
While her official film debut came in 1962's adaptation of Tennessee Williams' "Period of Adjustment", Nettleton previously had played a bit part in Elia Kazan's classic A Face in the Crowd (1957), scripted by Budd Schulberg. Nettleton appeared in many movies, but most of her major work was on stage and in television, where she appeared on everything from sitcoms to soap operas. Nettleton won two Emmys for her TV work, for the daytime special The American Woman: Portraits of Courage (1976) (TV), and for "A Gun for Mandy" (1983), an episode of the syndicated religious anthology "Insight" (1960).
|Jean Shepherd||(3 December 1960 - 1967) (divorced)|
She was the first caller to Jean Shepherd's late-night radio program on WOR-AM. He answered the call on the air and she became a frequent guest, known to listeners as "The Caller". Together, they created the call-in radio show.
Was nominated for Broadway's 1976 Tony Award as Best Actress (Featured Role - Play) for "They Knew What They Wanted."
Miss Chicago 1948
Semi-finalist at the 1948 Miss America Pageant
Attended the 2006 Twilight Zone Convention at the Hilton Hasbrouck Heights, Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey, August 12-13, 2006.
Was making up her own mini-plays and acting them out in her backyard at age 7.
Attended the 2007 Twilight Zone Convention at the Hilton Hasbrouck Heights, Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey, August 4-5, 2007.
Daughter of Edward and Virginia Nettleton.
In 1959, Lois won a Clarence Derwent Award for Best Supporting Performance by a non-featured actress for "God and Kate Murphy".
Lois was a consummate theatrical performer, on record stating, that she would have preferred treading the boards of the New York stage to acting in television. However, the need to looking after her ailing mother in Los Angeles in the end overrode all personal concerns.
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