Gigi Perreau

Gigi Perreau (born February 6, 1941) is an American actress.

Gigi Perreau
Born
Ghislaine Elizabeth Marie Thérèse Perreau-Saussine

(1941-02-06) February 6, 1941
OccupationActress, stage director, drama teacher
Years active1943present
Spouse(s)
Emil Frank Gallo
(m. 1960; div. 1967)

Gene Harve deRuelle
(m. 1970; div. 2000)
Children4

Early years

The daughter of French-born Robert Perreau-Saussine and Eleanor Child Perreau-Saussine, she was born Ghislaine Elizabeth Marie Thérèse Perreau-Saussine.[1]

Career

Perreau achieved success as a child actress in a number of films. She got into the business quite by accident. Her older brother Gerald was trying out for the part of the title character's son in Madame Curie (1943). Because their mother could not find a babysitter, she took Gigi along.[2] The two-year-old, who could speak French, got the (uncredited) part of Madame Curie's daughter Ève (while Gerald would have to wait a year to make his film debut in Passage to Marseille).[2]

She also played the daughter of Claude Rains and Bette Davis's characters in the 1944 film Mr. Skeffington (1944). In Shadow on the Wall (1950), she starred as the sole witness to a murder. As the "top child movie actress for 1951", the then ten-year-old was given the keys to the city of Pittsburgh by its mayor, and later Pennsylvania governor, David L. Lawrence. She was the youngest person to be so honored.[3] Perreau played the rebellious teen daughter of Fredric March in 1956's The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit. However, her film career lost momentum as she became an adult, so she turned to television.

In 1959, she played a friend of character Mary Stone (Shelley Fabares) on ABC's The Donna Reed Show, and had a supporting role in the sitcom The Betty Hutton Show on CBS, with her brother Gerald. In 1960, Perreau and Robert Harland performed as Sara Lou and Lin Proctor, a young couple from the east who have eloped and are heading west, in the ABC western series Stagecoach West with Wayne Rogers and Robert Bray [episode "The Land Beyond" (S1:E2)]. Also in 1960, Perreau was cast as Julie Staunton in the episode "Flight from Terror" of the ABC adventure series The Islanders, set in the South Pacific. She was cast in two episodes, "Don Gringo" (1960) and "The Promise" (1961), of the Nick Adams' ABC western series, The Rebel. In 1961, she played Mary Bettelheim in the episode "The Twelfth Hour" of the ABC/Warner Brothers television crime drama The Roaring 20s. She was cast in a recurring role on ABC's Follow the Sun series from 1961–1962 as a secretary, Katherine Ann "Kathy" Richards. She guest starred on The Rifleman in 1960 and 1961. She made two guest appearances on Perry Mason: in 1958 as title character and defendant Doris Bannister in "The Case of the Desperate Daughter" and in 1964 as nurse Phyllis Clover in "The Case of the Sleepy Slayer." In 1964, she also co-starred as Lucy, a beleaguered homesteader, on an episode of Gunsmoke titled "Chicken" [S10:E11]. In 1970, she appeared on The Brady Bunch ["The Undergraduate" (S1:E17)] as a math teacher who becomes the object of puppy love by Greg Brady, one of her students.

In the 2000s, she provided her voice in the animated films Fly Me to the Moon (2008), A Turtle's Tale: Sammy's Adventures (2010) and Crash: The Animated Movie (2017), and acted in Time Again (2011).

Affiliations

Perreau is an alumna of Immaculate Heart High School in Los Angeles and has taught drama classes there. As of 2010, she is a member of the board of directors of both the Donna Reed Foundation for the Performing Arts and the Will Geer Theatricum Botanicum and is the vice-president of the Drama Teachers Association of Southern California.[4]

She was a drama teacher for Meghan Markle. She was a guest of ITN at Markle's wedding in 2018 and was recognised by her in the crowd.[5]

Honors

On February 8, 1960, Perreau was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for her work in television.[6]

On March 14, 1998, she was honored by the Young Artist Foundation with its Former Child Star "Lifetime Achievement" Award in recognition of her outstanding achievements within the entertainment industry as a child actress.[7]

Personal life

Perreau's elder brother Gerald (stage name Peter Miles) and, to a lesser extent, her younger sisters Janine and Lauren, also had a measure of success in film and on television. Gigi and Janine portrayed sisters on screen in Week-End with Father (1951).[8]

Perreau, 19, married 35-year-old Emil Frank Gallo, a business executive in 1960; it was the first marriage for both parties.[9] They had two children: Gina Maria Gallo Paris, a filmmaker, and Robert Anthony Gallo, a guitarist. They divorced in 1967.

She wed Gene Harve deRuelle in 1970, a production manager and son of director Harve Foster, with whom she had two additional children: Danielle deRuelle Bianco and Keith deRuelle. Her second marriage ended in 2000.

Complete filmography

Year Title Role Note
1943Madame CurieÈve CurieUncredited
1944Two Girls and a SailorJean as a childUncredited
Mr. SkeffingtonFanny at age 2As Ghislaine Perreau
The Seventh CrossAnnie RoederUncredited
The Master RaceBabyAs Ghislaine Perreau
Dark WatersGirlUncredited
1945God Is My Co-PilotRobin Lee ScottUncredited
Voice of the WhistlerBobbie
Yolanda and the ThiefGigiAs Ghislaine Perreau
1946To Each His OwnVirgie InghamUncredited
High BarbareeYoung NancyUncredited
Alias Mr. TwilightSusanAs Gi-Gi Perreau
1947Song of LoveJulie
Green Dolphin StreetVeronica
1948The Sainted SistersBeasley girlUncredited
EnchantmentLark as a Child
1949Family HoneymoonZoe
Roseanna McCoyAllifair McCoy
Song of SurrenderFaith Beecham
My Foolish HeartRamona
1950Shadow on the WallSusan Starrling
Never a Dull MomentTina
For Heaven's SakeItem
1951The Lady Pays OffDiane Braddock
Reunion in RenoMargaret 'Maggie' Angeline Linaker
Week-End with FatherAnne Stubbs
1952Has Anybody Seen My Gal?Roberta Blaisdell
Bonzo Goes to CollegeBetsy
1955There's Always TomorrowEllen
1956The Man in the Gray Flannel SuitSusan Hopkins
Dance with Me, HenryShelley
1958The Cool and the CrazyAmy
Wild Heritage'Missouri' Breslin
1959Girls TownSerafina
1961Look in Any WindowEileen Lowell
Tammy Tell Me TrueRita
1967Hell on WheelsSue
Journey to the Center of TimeKaren White
1977High Seas HijackPatricia HaberEnglish version
2008Fly Me to the MoonAmeliaVoice, uncredited
2010A Turtle's Tale: Sammy's AdventuresWhaleVoice
2011Time AgainOld Lady
2017Crash: The Animated MovieGrandma SwiftVoice

References

  1. Room, Adrian (10 January 2014). "Dictionary of Pseudonyms: 13,000 Assumed Names and Their Origins, 5th ed". McFarland. Retrieved 16 February 2019 via Google Books.
  2. James Bacon (August 25, 1960). "My, How Time Flies! Gigi Perreau, Former Child Star, Plans Oct. 1 Wedding". Lubbock Avalanche-Journal. Associated Press via Newspapers.com.
  3. Edith Rosenblatt (December 1, 1951). "Top Child Movie Actress Honored at Luncheon". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
  4. "Gigi Perreau". Donna Reed Foundation for the Performing Arts (donnareed.org). Retrieved January 3, 2010.
  5. Adebowale, Temi (19 May 2018). "Meghan Markle Spotted Her Old Drama Teacher During the Royal Carriage Ride". Town & Country. Retrieved 16 February 2019.
  6. "Gigi Perreau – Hollywood Walk of Fame". Hollywood Walk of Fame. Retrieved November 17, 2011.
  7. "19th Annual Youth in Film Awards". Young Artist Awards. Archived from the original on April 14, 2015. Retrieved November 17, 2011.
  8. Brumburgh, Gary (Fall 2016). "Gigi Perreau: The Major Little Minor". Films of the Golden Age (86): 38–52.
  9. "Gigi Perreau Marries Business Executive". Abilene Reporter-News. October 2, 1960 via Newspapers.com.

Bibliography

  • Goldrup, Tom and Jim (2002). Growing Up on the Set: Interviews with 39 Former Child Actors of Film and Television. McFarland & Co. p. 266-232. ISBN 1476613702.
  • Best, Marc (1971). Those Endearing Young Charms: Child Performers of the Screen. South Brunswick and New York: Barnes & Co., pp. 209–214.
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