Muriel Evans (born Muriel Adele Evanson, July 20, 1910 – October 26, 2000) was an American film actress. She is best known for her many appearances in popular westerns of the 1930s for which she won a Golden Boot Award.
Muriel Adele Evanson
July 20, 1910
Minneapolis, Minnesota, U.S.
|Died||October 26, 2000 90) (aged|
Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, California, U.S.
|Education||Hollywood High School|
Michael J. P. Cudahy
(m. 1929; div. 1930)
Marshall R. Worchester
(m. 1936; died 1971)
Early life and career
Evans was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota to Norwegian immigrant parents. Her father died when she was only two months old, forcing her mother to move to California to find work, where Evans' mother took a job as a maid at First National Studios. She spent her afternoons on film sets and was soon noticed by a studio executive. The executive introduced her to the director Robert Z. Leonard, who gave her a small role opposite Corinne Griffith in the 1926 film, Mademoiselle Modiste. She continued attending classes at Hollywood High School and landing bit parts in stock theater productions and silent films.
In 1929, Evans co-starred in the silent, comedic short films, Good Night Nurse and Joyland, starring Lupino Lane. Shortly after completing Joyland, Evans put her acting career on hold to finish school. In July 1929, Evans announced her engagement to Michael J. P. Cudahy, the grandson of Michael Cudahy, one of the founders of the Cudahy Packing Company. They were married on July 7, 1929 in Riverside, California. Evans and Cudahy traveled the world and settled in Paris. In 1930, they returned to the United States and Evans filed for divorce. Their divorce was finalized in October 1930. Evans, who gave up her career upon her marriage, returned to Hollywood, signed a contract at MGM and began making films again.
In March 1932, Evans (and 11 other actresses) won a two-day beauty contest sponsored by Paramount Pictures, after which she starred in six films, most notably Young Ironsides with Charley Chase and Pack Up Your Troubles with Laurel and Hardy. She would go on to star in eight more shorts with Chase before his death in 1940.
Evans' success was due in large part to her pleasant speaking voice. She made a smooth transition from silent pictures to talkies, and throughout the 1930s, Evans continued to work steadily. She appeared in Frank Capra's Mr. Deeds Goes to Town, Manhattan Melodrama with Clark Gable and William Powell, and The Prizefighter and the Lady with Myrna Loy. By the mid-1930s, Evans also began co-starring in popular westerns alongside Tom Mix, John Wayne and Tex Ritter. She also starred in three Hopalong Cassidy films opposite William Boyd, and did seven westerns with Buck Jones.
In 1936, Evans married a theatrical agent, Marshall R. Worchester. By age 30, she retired from acting. One of her last film appearances came in 1946, in the Pete Smith short, Studio Visit. Soon after retiring, Evans and her husband settled in Washington, D.C. Over the next decade, she starred in four radio shows and in the television show Hollywood Reporter. In 1951, the couple moved back to Hollywood, although Evans never resumed her acting career. Eventually, the couple bought property in Tarzana, California, where Evans dabbled in real estate.
After the death of her husband in 1971, Evans began work as a volunteer nurse at the Motion Picture and Television Country House and Hospital in Woodland Hills not far from her home. After a stroke in 1994, she became a resident within the complex and often dined with fellow actors with whom she had once worked, including Anita Garvin. In 1999, Evans made her last film appearance in a 2000 documentary, I Used to Be in Pictures, in which she was one of many former actors who recalled their experiences in the film work.
On October 26, 2000, Muriel Evans died of colon cancer at the Motion Picture and Television Country House and Hospital in Woodland Hills, California. She was 90 years old.
|1929||Good Night Nurse||Short|
|1932||Sinners in the Sun||Fashion Model||Uncredited|
|1932||Young Ironsides||Muriel Evans||Short|
|1932||Pack Up Your Troubles||Wrong Eddie's bride|
|1932||Girl Grief||Miss Evans||Short|
|1932||Now We'll Tell One||Muriel Evans||Short|
|1932||Mr. Bride||Muriel Evans||Short|
|1933||Fallen Arches||Muriel Gilbert||Short|
|1933||Nature In the Wrong||Muriel||Short|
Alternative title: Tarzan In the Wrong
|1933||His Silent Racket||Muriel||Short|
|1933||Arabian Tights||Miss Evans||Short|
|1933||Thundering Taxis||Mrs. Blacker||Short|
|1933||Broadway to Hollywood||Maid||Uncredited|
Alternative title: Ring Up the Curtain
|1933||The Prizefighter and the Lady||Linda||Alternative title: Every Woman's Man|
|1933||Dancing Lady||Chorus Girl||Uncredited|
|1933||The Women in His Life||Molly|
|1933||Queen Christina||Barmaid at Inn||Uncredited|
|1934||Heat Lightning||Blonde Cutie|
|1934||Manhattan Melodrama||Tootsie Malone|
|1934||The Big Idea||Honey, Ted's Fiancee||Short|
|1934||Hollywood Party||Show Girl||Uncredited|
|1934||Attention Suckers||Demonstration Watcher||Short|
|1934||Have a Heart||Helen, Schauber's Secretary|
|1935||The Roaring West||Mary Parker||Serial|
|1935||The Throwback||Muriel Fergus|
|1935||Nurse to You!||Muriel Chase||Short|
|1935||The New Frontier||Hanna Lewis|
|1936||Silver Spurs||Janet Allison||Alternative title: Silverspurs|
|1936||Call of the Prairie||Linda McHenry|
|1936||King of the Pecos||Belle Jackson|
|1936||Mr. Deeds Goes to Town||Theresa||Uncredited|
|1936||Three on the Trail||Mary Stevens|
|1936||Two-Fisted Gentleman||June Prentice|
|1936||Missing Girls||Dorothy Benson||Alternative title: When Girls Leave Home|
|1936||House of Secrets||Julie Kenmore|
|1936||Under Your Spell||Governess||Uncredited|
|1936||The Boss Rider of Gun Creek||Starr Landerson|
|1936||Ten Laps to Go||Norma Corbett||Alternative title: King of the Speedway|
|1936||Don't Be Like That||The Faithful Wife||Short|
|1937||Rich Relations||Trixie Lane|
|1937||Headline Crasher||Edith Arlen|
|1937||Smoke Tree Range||Nan Page|
|1937||Rustlers' Valley||Agnes Randall|
|1937||Law for Tombstone||Nellie Gray|
|1937||Boss of Lonely Valley||Retta Lowrey|
|1939||Home Boner||Mrs. Errol||Short|
|1939||The Rookie Cop||Fern, Joey's Girl||Alternative title: Swift Vengeance|
|1939||Westbound Stage||Joan Hale|
|1940||Roll, Wagons, Roll||Ruth Benson||Alternative title: Roll Covered Wagon|
- Mutti-Mews, Howard (November 8, 2000). "Obituary: Muriel Evans". The Independent. Retrieved August 18, 2007.
- "WEALTHY YOUTH PLANS TO WED MURIEL EVANS". The Miami News. July 3, 1929. pp. J–4. Retrieved December 10, 2012.
- "CUDAHY MARRIES ACTRESS". The Los Angeles Times. July 29, 1929. p. A6.
- "Cudahy Makes Up With Film Actress Wife". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. December 19, 1930. p. 4. Retrieved December 10, 2012.
- "WINS DIVORCE FROM YOUNG CUDAHY". The Southeast Missourian. October 31, 1930. p. 6. Retrieved December 10, 2012.
- "Muriel Evans Starts Film Career Anew". The Milwaukee Sentinel. November 24, 1933. p. 17. Retrieved December 10, 2012.
- The Heroines: Muriel Evans
- Oliver, Myrna (October 30, 2000). "Muriel Evans, film actress, died at 90". Star-News. pp. 4–B. Retrieved December 10, 2012.