Monday, February 20, 2012

B Movie Actress Elyse Knox Passes On

Elyse Knox, who starred in such B movies as The Mummy's Tomb (1942) and Don Winslow of the Coast Guard (1943), passed on 16 February 2012 at the age of 94. She was mother of actors Mark Harmon, Kristin Harmon, and Kelly Harmon.

Elyse Knox was born Elyse Kornbloth in Hartford, Connecticut on 14 December 1917. In high school she studied oil painting. She continued to paint for the rest of her life. She studied at the Traphagen School of Fashion in New York City. Afterwards she worked as an artist's assistant at a design studio in New York  City. It was when a model did not show up that the design studio decided that Miss Knox should stand in for her. It was not long before she appearing in magazines. It was when she appeared as a bride in a newsreel that she attracted the attention of Hollywood.

Elyse Knox made her film debut in an uncredited, bit part in the movie Wake Up and Live (1937).  In the late Thirties she appeared in such films as Star Dust (1940), Lillian Russell (1940), and Girl From Avenue A (1940). In the Forties she appeared in such films as Sheriff of Tombstone (1941), Top Sergeant (1942), Arabian Nights (1942), The Mummy's Tomb (1942), Don Winslow of the Coast Guard (1943), Hit the Ice (1943), A Wave,  a WAC, & a Marine (1944), Joe Palooka, Champ (1946), Sweetheart of Sigma Chi (1946), Joe Palooka in Fighting Mad (1948), Forgotten Women (1949) , and Joe Palooka in the Counterpunch (1949).  It was after There's a Girl in My Heart in 1949 that she decided to retire from acting to concentrate on her family.

Elyse Knox established herself as an impressionist painter.

Elyse Knox was certainly beautiful. And while the roles in the various B movies in which she appeared generally were not very demanding, she was convincing in all of them. It was little wonder then that she was quite successful as a B movie actress. During her career she appeared opposite such leading men as Roy Rogers, Lon Chaney Jr., Abbott and Costello, and Edward Norris. While Miss Knox did not have a particularly long career (a little over a decade), she certainly had a memorable one.

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