Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Jean Porter R.I.P.

Actress Jean Porter, who appeared in such films as Bathing Beauty (1944), Abbott and Costello in Hollywood (1945), and Cry Danger (1951), died on January 13 2018. She was 95 years old.

Jean Porter was born on December 8 1922 in Cisco, Texas. She entered the entertainment industry at a very young age. When she was only 10 she was the host of her own radio show on Forth Worth station WRR. She had a summer job singing with Ted Lewis's vaudeville band. When she was 12 her mother won an all expenses paid trip to Hollywood. Jean Porter accompanied her mother and studied at the Fanchon and Marco dance school. It was there that she was discovered by director Allan Dwan. He cast her in an uncredited role in his musical Song and Dance Man (1936).  In the late Thirties she appeared in uncredited roles in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1938), The Under-Pup (1939), and One Million B.C. (1940). 

In the early Forties Miss Porter appeared in uncredited roles in such films as Never Give a Sucker an Even Break (1941), Henry Aldrich for President (1941), and Hellzapoppin' (1941). She received her first credited role in the movie Fall In (1942). In the Forties she appeared in such films as The Youngest Profession (1943), Andy Hardy's Blonde Trouble (1944), Bathing Beauty (1944), San Fernando Valley (1944), Bud Abbott and Lou Costello in Hollywood (1945), What Next, Corporal Hargrove? (1945), Till the End of Time (1946), Little Miss Broadway (1947), That Hagen Girl (1947), and Two Blondes and a Redhead (1947). In 1948 she married director Edward Dmytryk, one of the Hollywood Ten. Jean Porter and Edward Dmytryk left for England and remained there until 1951. Upon their return Mr. Dmytryk was imprisoned for six months for contempt of Congress.

In the Fifties Miss Porter appeared in the films Cry Danger (1951), Kentucky Jubilee (1951), G. I. Jane (1951), The Clown (1953), Racing Blood (1954), and The Left Hand of God (1955). She made her television debut in 1953 in an episode of The Abbott and Costello Show. In the Fifties she guest starred on such shows as Climax!, The People's Choice, and The Red Skelton Show. In the early Sixties she appeared on the shows 77 Sunset Strip and Sea Hunt. She retired from acting in 1961.

Jean Porter appeared in everything from musicals to Westerns, and she was always a pleasure to see on the screen. Miss Porter was pretty, lively, and entirely charming. While she always played supporting roles throughout her career, her characters always remained memorable. Whether in a big budget MGM film or a low budget Columbia B-movie, Jean Porter left an impression.

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