Coleen Gray

Actor, Singer, Musician
As a product of the post-World War II Hollywood assembly line, actress Coleen Gray fared better than many other pretty young things lured to the studios with the promise of a long-term contract. A plum role as Victor ... Read more »
Born: 10/22/1922 in Staplehurst, Nebraska, USA

Filmography

Actor (30)

Cry From the Mountain 1986 (Movie)

Marian Rissman (Actor)

Bright Promise 1969 - 1972 (TV Show)

Actor

Ellery Queen: Don't Look Behind You 1971 - 1972 (TV Show)

Actor

My Three Sons 1960 - 1972 (TV Show)

Actor

The Late Liz 1971 (Movie)

Sue Webb (Actor)

P.J. 1968 (Movie)

Betty Orbison (Actor)

Town Tamer 1964 (Movie)

(Actor)

The Leech Woman 1959 (Movie)

June (Actor)

Frontier Gambler 1956 (Movie)

(Actor)

Star in the Dust 1956 (Movie)

Nellie Mason (Actor)

The Killing 1956 (Movie)

Fay (Actor)

The Vampire 1956 (Movie)

(Actor)

The Wild Dakotas 1956 (Movie)

(Actor)

Las Vegas Shakedown 1955 (Movie)

Julia Rae (Actor)

Tennessee's Partner 1955 (Movie)

Goldie (Actor)

The Twinkle in God's Eye 1955 (Movie)

Laura (Actor)

Arrow in the Dust 1954 (Movie)

Christella (Actor)

Sand 1949 (Movie)

Joan Hartley (Actor)

Red River 1948 (Movie)

Fen (Actor)

Nightmare Alley 1947 (Movie)

Molly (Actor)

Father Is a Bachelor (Movie)

Prudence Millett (Actor)

Fury at Furnace Creek (Movie)

Molly Baxter (Actor)

Kansas City Confidential (Movie)

Helen (Actor)

Riding High (Movie)

Alice Higgins (Actor)

State Fair (Movie)

Girl (Actor)

The Best Place to Be (TV Show)

Actor

The Black Whip (TV Show)

Actor

The Sleeping City (Movie)

Ann Sebastian (Actor)

Three Little Girls in Blue (Movie)

Girl (Actor)

Biography

As a product of the post-World War II Hollywood assembly line, actress Coleen Gray fared better than many other pretty young things lured to the studios with the promise of a long-term contract. A plum role as Victor Mature's girlfriend in "Kiss of Death" (1947) gave the dark-haired Nebraskan just the right career boost, setting her up for memorable turns as Tyrone Power's comely accomplice in "Nightmare Alley" (1947) and as John Wayne's prairie sweetheart in "Red River" (1948). Equally adept at etching characters of virtue and vice, Gray segued seamlessly from playing a shady nurse in "The Sleeping City" (1950) to the heroine of "Kansas City Confidential" (1951), which paired her onscreen and off with leading man John Payne. Following a failed early marriage, Gray's assignments were largely routine until Stanley Kubrick lifted her out of B-movie mediocrity when he cast her as Sterling Hayden's gun moll in the heist drama "The Killing" (1956). In middle age, the actress endeared herself to a new generation of cult film fans by playing a potential victim of "The Vampire" (1957) and an amoral cosmetics company CEO who discovers the secret to immortality in "The Leech Woman" (1960). A familiar face on television, Gray quit show business for faith-based charity work alongside born-again Watergate convict Chuck Colson,, but she reemerged late in celebration of her contributions to American cinema and to honor the memory of her departed co-stars and leading men.

Relationships

Anna Jensen

Mother

Merle J C Jensen

Brother

Rodney Amateau

Husband
married on August 10, 1945 divorced on February 11, 1949

Susan Amateau

Daughter
born on June 10, 1946 in Los Angeles

William Bidlack

Husband
married on July 14, 1953

Bruce Bidlack

Son
born on June 1, 1954

Jerrilou Hollis

Daughter
born c. 1945

Arthur Jensen

Father

EDUCATION

Hamline University

St Paul , Minnesota 1943

Hamline University

St Paul , Minnesota 1943

Milestones

1964

With actors Victor Jory and Susan Seaforth, testified before Congress as part of "Project Prayer", arguing in favor of Constitutional amendment allowing school prayer

1955

Sued ex-husband Rodney Amateau for child support

1947

First major role, "Kiss of Death"

1944

First documented film credit, "State Fair"

1943

Signed to 20th Century-Fox contract

1929

Family moved to farm in Minnesota

Bonus Trivia

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"When I attended the University, I daydreamed about being a movie star. I would do my dressing room in Early American and give lovely presents to my make-up man and hairdresser for making me loook so lovely, and so on. When I got my contract at 20th I was in seventh heaven, but I found out that a movie career is mostly hard work laced with disappointments".--Coleen Gray, quoted in THE BOSTON SUNDAY POST, November 9, 1947

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