Sandra Dee

Actor, Model
A reigning teen star of the late 1950s and early 60s, whose pert innocence and saucy yet virginal sweetness struck a nerve with the pre-sexual revolution's youth audience until a more-knowning kind of ... Read more »
Born: 04/22/1942 in Bayonne, New Jersey, USA

Filmography

Actor (28)

Bobby Darin: I Want to Be a Legend 2000 - 2001 (TV Show)

Actor

Lana Turner: Hollywood's Screen Siren 1998 - 1999 (TV Show)

Actor

Frasier 1994 (Tv Show)

Actor

Houston, We've Got a Problem 1973 - 1974 (TV Show)

Actor

The Dunwich Horror 1969 (Movie)

Nancy Walker (Actor)

Doctor, You've Got to Be Kidding 1966 (Movie)

Heather Halloran (Actor)

Rosie 1966 (Movie)

Daphne (Actor)

A Man Could Get Killed 1965 (Movie)

Amy Franklin (Actor)

That Funny Feeling 1964 (Movie)

Joan Howell (Actor)

I'd Rather Be Rich 1963 (Movie)

Cynthia Dulaine (Actor)

Take Her, She's Mine 1963 (Movie)

Mollie Michaelson (Actor)

Tammy and the Doctor 1962 (Movie)

Tammy Tyree (Actor)

Come September 1961 (Movie)

Sandy Stevens (Actor)

If a Man Answers 1961 (Movie)

Chantal (Actor)

Romanoff and Juliet 1961 (Movie)

Juliet Moulsworth (Actor)

Portrait in Black 1960 (Movie)

Catherine Cabot (Actor)

Tammy Tell Me True 1960 (Movie)

Tammy (Actor)

Imitation of Life 1959 (Movie)

Susie Meredith--Age 16 (Actor)

A Summer Place 1958 (Movie)

Molly Jorgenson (Actor)

Gidget 1958 (Movie)

Francine "Gidget" Lawrence (Actor)

Stranger in My Arms 1958 (Movie)

Pat Beasley (Actor)

The Reluctant Debutante 1958 (Movie)

Jane Broadbent (Actor)

The Restless Years 1958 (Movie)

Melinda Grant (Actor)

The Wild and the Innocent 1958 (Movie)

Rosalie Stocker (Actor)

Until They Sail 1957 (Movie)

Evelyn Leslie (Actor)

Fantasy Island (TV Show)

Actor

The Manhunter (TV Show)

Actor

Biography

A reigning teen star of the late 1950s and early 60s, whose pert innocence and saucy yet virginal sweetness struck a nerve with the pre-sexual revolution's youth audience until a more-knowning kind of twentysomething--the Tuesday Welds and Ann-Margrets--came to the fore.

A successful child model from the age of ten, the petite, twinkly-eyed blonde Dee made her film debut in "Until They Sail" in 1957 and starred in a series of popular romantic comedies ("Gidget" 1959) and melodramas ("Imitation of Life", "A Summer Place" both 1959, "Portrait in Black" 1960) usually as a good girl on the brink of sexual maturity. Dee also took over the title role from Debbie Reynolds in the popular "Tammy" film series, starring in "Tammy and the Doctor," (1963) and "Tammy Tell Me True" (1961). Her reality was not so squeaky clean, according to her 1991 interview with People magazine, Dee was sexually abused as a child by her stepfather and pushed into stardom by her mother.

At age 18, Dee wed brash singer-actor Bobby Darin, with whom she co-starred in "Come September" (1961), "If a Man Answers" (1962) and "That Funny Feeling" (1965). Her diminshing box office and dampening youth appeal was attributed by her Universal bosses to her rocky split from Darin, and they dropped her in 1965. Divorced in 1967 (though Darin remained the love of her life), she made her final screen appearances, including"The Dunwich Horror" (1970), a handful of telepics, and guest shots on such series as "Fantasy Island" and, in voice only, "Frasier." She only revealed in the 1990s her recovery from anorexia, drug and alcohol addiction, and the near-fatal depression that precipitated her premature, self-imposed retirement from the screen.

Spending nearly three years inside her home, Dee eventually turned her life around with the help of her son Dodd Darin, and after therapy began seeking a return to the screen. She has remained a pop culture touchstone: her name and image was evoked in 1978 with the film "Grease," which featured Olivia Newton-John's character Sandy modeled loosely on Dee, and Stockard Channing as Rizzo singing the tune "Look At Me, I'm Sandra Dee," mocking the teen idol's squeaky-clean image. And just prior to Dee's death in early 2005, her life with Darin was depicted in Kevin Spacey's loving Darin biopic "Beyond the Sea" (2004), with Kate Bosworth portraying the actress.

Relationships

Dodd Cassotto

Son
born on December 16, 1961 married first child, a daughter born in August 1996

Bobby Darin

Husband
married on December 1, 1960 separated in April 1966 divorce became final in December 1967 met while co-starring in "Come September" (1961) died in 1973

Eugene Douvan

Step-Father
married Sandra Dee's mother 1950 died during heart surgery in 1956

EDUCATION

Professional Children's School

New York , New York

Milestones

1969

Last film, "The Dunwich Horror"

1957

Went to Hollywood to test with producer Ross Hunter for "The Restless Years" (1958); signed to seven-year contract with Universal

1957

Loaned out to MGM to make film debut in "Until They Sail" before making "The Restless Years"

1952

Moved from Long Island to Manhattan at age 10

First modelling job for Girl Scouts Magazine

Became a top teen model earning over $70,000/year at age 14 (date approximate)

Made exhibitors' poll of top ten boxoffice stars: placed 7th in 1960, 6th in 1961, 9th in 1962, and 8th in 1963

Bonus Trivia

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There was a song in the 1972 hit stage musical "Grease" called "Look at Me, I'm Sandra Dee" which poked fun at her squeaky-clean image.

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