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Shirley Deane Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (5)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Spouse (1)  | Trivia (2)

Overview (5)

Born in San Francisco, California, USA
Died in Glendale, California, USA
Birth NameShirley Deane Blattenberger
Nickname Shirley Redden-Aaronson
Height 5' 4" (1.63 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Vivacious, sunny, blue-eyed Shirley Deane first trained as a dancer from the age of seven and learned to play the piano. She began her professional career on stage in San Francisco and arrived in Hollywood via winning a dancing beauty contest. Signed by 20th Century Fox primarily on the strength of her singing voice, she spent several years training in 'stock school' and assigned mainly extra work. Graduating to featured roles, her first significant speaking part was in Charlie Chan at the Circus (1936), appearing as a platinum blonde. She was then picked from fourteen other hopefuls for a lead in a comedy-drama about newly-weds, The First Baby (1936). This, in turn, led to her becoming a fixture in the series of low-budget, family-oriented Jones Family films, a modest rival to MGM's popular Hardy family. Jed Prouty and Spring Byington headed the small-town clan, Shirley often second-billed as Bonnie, the eldest daughter. With the end of the series came the end of her contract with Fox. Her final lead was in a minor crime drama, Undercover Agent (1939). After that, she appeared in the supporting cast, as Princess Aura, in Buster Crabbe's cult Flash Gordon Conquers the Universe (1940). Ironically, though Shirley's voice appears to have been a major asset, it was used in the movies just once, warbling a number in a minor Gene Autry western, Prairie Moon (1938).

With her movie career on the wane after a mere four years of moderate success, Shirley turned towards radio, appearing on Kraft Music Hall and Lux Radio Theatre. For most of the 1940's, she performed on stage on the East Coast, guested as occasional vocalist with swing bands and sang at USO canteens. Her contribution to the war effort also consisted of putting together musical reviews and selling war bonds and stamps in theatre lobbies between shows. However, after 1952, Shirley essentially forsook her show business career and devoted herself to raising a family. She died in April 1983 of cancer in Glendale, California, at the age of seventy.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: I.S.Mowis

Spouse (1)

Ralph T Kettering (10 April 1941 - ?) ( divorced) ( 2 children)

Trivia (2)

Third choice to play "Blondie" in the long-running series at Columbia, which began in 1938 (Gloria Blondell and Una Merkel were ahead of her). She fell ill before shooting the first of what became a series of 28 films over 12 years, based on Chic Young's comic-strip.
She died only three days after her Flash Gordon Conquers the Universe (1940) co-star Buster Crabbe.

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