Claire Kelly

Claire Kelly (March 15, 1934 – July 1, 1998)[1] was an American actress and model.

Claire Kelly
Kelly (right) with Leigh Snowden (left) and Mike Connors in a promotional picture for Tightrope
Born
Claire Ann Green

(1934-03-15)March 15, 1934
DiedJuly 1, 1998(1998-07-01) (aged 64)
OccupationActress
Years active1955–1972
Spouse(s)
George DeWitt
(m. 1951; div. 1955)

Perry Lopez
(m. 1960; div. 1961)

Robert Kenaston
(m. 1961; div. 1963)

Robert Murphy
(m. 19??; her death 1998)
Children2

Early life

Born Claire Ann Green, the daughter of a wealthy California rancher, she was trained at the Neighborhood Playhouse in New York. Kelly started out as a model in Miami, and appeared several times on the cover of McCall, continuing her modelling career throughout the 1950s. She made the cover of Picture Week in 1956, and was a 1958 Deb Star.[2]

Career

Kelly went on to roles in films such as The Badlanders (1958), Party Girl (1958), Ask Any Girl (1959) and A Guide for the Married Man (1967). In The Badlanders, a western remake of the film noir The Asphalt Jungle, she played "the Angela role immortalized by Marilyn Monroe" [3] in the original film. In 1959 she was publicized as "the screen's most exciting discovery since Rita Hayworth".[1] In 1964-65 she appeared in several episodes of the television series Burke's Law.

Personal life

From 1951 to 1955 Kelly was married to singer-comedian George DeWitt, using the name Claire DeWitt in Son of Sinbad, after which she was seen publicly with Lance Reventlow, son of wealthy heiress Barbara Hutton, singer Frank Sinatra, hotel heir Conrad "Nicky" Hilton Jr., and actor Perry Lopez, whom she briefly married in 1960-1961, after which she married wealthy banking heir Robert Alan Kenaston Jr. (d. 1995), son of actress Billie Dove, in 1961-1963, followed by wealthy Robert Murphy.[1] She once dismissed Prince Aly Khan as "gauche" and Elvis Presley as "a mere child".[1]

On November 6, 1954, Kelly's 3-year-old son Nicholas Christopher DeWitt died after fighting for three days in an iron lung at Variety Children’s Hospital in Miami, Florida, the victim of a rare anesthetic hazard, which happened after he was bitten on the lip by Duke, a cocker spaniel owned by former featherweight champion Willie Pep, and his heart stopped beating as doctors repaired the damage with 25 stitches.[1]

Filmography

Film

Year Title Role Notes
1955 Son of Sinbad Tartar Girl Uncredited
1956 The Best Things in Life Are Free Chorus Girl Uncredited
1956 Scandal Incorporated June Trapping
1958 Underwater Warrior Anne Winnmore
1958 Snowfire Carol Hampton
1958 The Badlanders Ada Winton
1958 Party Girl Genevieve Farrell
1959 Ask Any Girl Lisa
1965 The Loved One Whispering Glades Hostess
1967 A Guide for the Married Man Harriet Stander
1969 Childish Things Sharon
1969 What Ever Happened to Aunt Alice? Elva
1970 Up Your Teddy Bear Miss Boota, sculptress
1972 Straight On till Morning Margo Thompson

Television

Year Title Role Notes
1955 The Bob Cummings Show Miss Kelly Episode: "The Wolf Sitter"
1956 The People's Choice Melinda Episode: "Aunt Gus Leaves Sock"
1956 Kings Row Little Egypt Episode: "Carnival"
1957 Richard Diamond, Private Detective Episode: "The Mickey Farmer Case"
1957 The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin Episode: "Frontier Angel"
1958 Love That Jill Episode: "Tonight's the Night"
1959 Northwest Passage Lucy Episode: "The Killers"
1960 Tightrope! Linda Costain Episode: "Three to Make Ready"
1960 Bachelor Father Laura Evans Episode: "Kelly and the College Man"
1960 The Texan Gail Henshaw Episode: "Lady Tenderfoot"
1961 Surfside 6 Pat Wheeler Episode: "Ghost of a Chance"
1964–1965 Burke's Law 2nd Model / Samantha 2 episodes
1967 The Monkees Dr. Sisters Episode: "Monkees Get Out More Dirt"
1969 The F.B.I. Secretary Episode: "Gamble with Death"
1972 Love Story Landlady Episode: "Night of the Tanks"

References

  1. "Claire Kelly - The Private Life and Times of Claire Kelly". Glamour Girls of the Silver Screen. Retrieved October 25, 2015.
  2. "Claire Kelly - Biography". IMDb. Retrieved October 25, 2015.
  3. Schwartz, Ronald (1 January 2001). Noir, Now and Then: Film Noir Originals and Remakes, (1944-1999). Greenwood Press. p. 89. ISBN 978-0-313-30893-2.
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