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Biography

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Overview (2)

Date of Birth 18 October 1913Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
Date of Death 15 November 1993Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, USA  (cancer)

Mini Bio (2)

Taught ancient Greek and Latin at UCLA. Organized production of Greek plays within the UCLA Classics Department.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: eddberg@earthlink.net

Lovely and ethereal in looks, and quite unassuming in nature, 1930s actress Evelyn Venable was born in 1913 in Cincinnati, Ohio, where she grew up and received her schooling. Both her father, Emerson Venable, and grandfather were writers/teachers. In her high school drama department, Evelyn played the top leads in their productions of "Romeo and Juliet" (Juliet) and "As You Like It" (Rosalind). Critics were so bowled over by her performances that she was cast in a professional production of "Dear Brutus" in the nearby area. Following graduation, she earned a four-year non-acting scholarship to Vassar but left after the first year to study at the University of Cincinnati. After college the acting bug returned. Encouraged by classical actor/director Walter Hampden, who was a family friend, he invited her to join his touring company where she eventually performed Ophelia to his Hamlet and Roxanne to his Cyrano. Film scouts at Paramount caught these productions and invited her to Hollywood.

Evelyn made her film debut with Cradle Song (1933) and proceeded to take on sensitive, soft-spoken leads or second leads in a number of "A" class fare including Mrs. Wiggs of the Cabbage Patch (1934) with Pauline Lord; the classic fantasy Death Takes a Holiday (1934) starring Fredric March, which is deemed her best role; David Harum (1934) and The County Chairman (1935), both Will Rogers' vehicles; and Alice Adams (1935) starring Katharine Hepburn in the title role. In each of these Evelyn looked simply luminous and proved most able, but perhaps her modest, rather delicate nature didn't carry off enough weight to make her a star. In any event, she was thereafter relegated to working at "poverty-row" studios. She started appearing in movies with titles that indicated a downhill slide was imminent -- Vagabond Lady (1935), Streamline Express (1935), North of Nome (1936), Racketeers in Exile (1937), The Headleys at Home (1938) and Hollywood Stadium Mystery (1938). One bright spot would be her sooth voicing of the "Blue Fairy" in the Disney animated classic Pinocchio (1940).

By this time, Evelyn had married Hal Mohr, the Oscar-winning cinematographer she had met on the set of one of Will Rogers' films, and bore him two daughters, Dolores and Rosalia. Interest waned for the actress, who decided that family came first and completely retired after appearing opposite Stuart Erwin Jr. in the light comedy He Hired the Boss (1943). Evelyn gamely returned to college (UCLA) where she studied Greek and Latin and attained a Master's degree. Invited to join the UCLA staff as a drama instructor, she stayed there contentedly for decades. She and Mohr lived in Brentwood, California in later years and enjoyed a 40-year marriage that lasted until his death in 1974. Evelyn died in Idaho of cancer in 1993.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Gary Brumburgh / gr-home@pacbell.net

Spouse (1)

Hal Mohr (7 December 1934 - 10 May 1974) (his death)

Trivia (7)

Original model for Columbia Pictures logo
Taught Latin at UCLA.
For years it was believed that Evelyn Venable's father was so strict that he had it written into her Hollywood contract that there would be no kissing scenes in her films, and , indeed, she does not have any kissing scenes in her most famous films -- "Death Takes a Holiday", "The Little Colonel" and Disney's "Pinocchio" (in which she is the voice of the Blue Fairy). But the rumor was apparently not true.
During World War II she worked extensively for the Red Cross.
She and her husband were strict vegetarians. Supposedly Evelyn never tasted meat or fish during her lifetime.
Daughter Rosalia Venable Mohr, born March 29, 1937, in Los Angeles, weighing eight pounds, four ounces.
Daughter Dolores Venable Mohr, born November 26, 1935, in Los Angeles, California, weighing nine pounds, two ounces.

Personal Quotes (1)

I've seen so many Hollywood families come apart because of the mother's career. I never regretted leaving films. If I have any regrets at all it is in leaving the stage. I might have been a really good actress. There simply was no chance in most of my pictures nor was I getting the proper training.

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