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Vanessa Brown

Show Count: 13
Series Count: 1
Role: Old Time Radio Star
Old Time Radio
Born: March 24, 1928, Vienna, Austria
Died: May 21, 1999, Woodland Hills, California, U.S

Vanessa Brown (March 24, 1928 – May 21, 1999) was an American actress who was successful in radio, film, theater, and television.

Early life

Born Smylla Brynd in Vienna, Austria, to Jewish parents, Brown and her family fled to Paris, France in 1937 to escape persecution with the rise of the Nazi Party. Within a few years the family had settled in America and Brown auditioned for Lillian Hellman for a role in Watch on the Rhine. Fluent in several languages, the youngster impressed Hellman with her presence and authentic Teutonic accent, and she was signed as understudy to Ann Blyth, eventually doing the role of Babette on Broadway and in the touring production. In high school she wrote and directed school plays.

Radio and films

Her IQ of 165 led to two years of work as one of the young panelists on the radio series Quiz Kids, and she was also a junior member of the National Board of Review, the critical panel serving the motion picture industry. RKO Radio Pictures brought her family to Los Angeles, and Brown made her film debut (as Tessa Brind) in Youth Runs Wild (1944). RKO changed her screen name to Vanessa Brown and assigned her to a series of ingenue roles over the next few years. In the late 1940s she was featured in The Late George Apley (1947), Big Jack (1949; Wallace Beery's last movie), The Heiress (1949) and other films. She was the eighth actress to play the role of Jane, appearing in Tarzan and the Slave Girl (1950) opposite Lex Barker, followed by a role in Vincente Minnelli's acclaimed The Bad and the Beautiful (1952).

Brown acted in live television dramas of the early 1950s, including Robert Montgomery Presents and The Philco Television Playhouse, and appeared on Pantomime Quiz and Leave It to the Girls. Back on Broadway, she originated the role of "The Girl" in The Seven Year Itch, the character portrayed by Marilyn Monroe in the 1955 film version. She continued to do much television through the 1950s, and was one of the narrators of the United World Federalists documentary Eight Steps to Peace (1957), along with Vincent Price and Robert Ryan.

Brown was married to Dr. Robert Alan Franklyn, a prominent plastic surgeon, from 1950 to 1957. In 1959, she married television director Mark Sandrich, Jr. – son of director Mark Sandrich – and they had two children. She later appeared on such television series as The Wonder Years andMurder, She Wrote. She also had a guest appearance on Perry Mason as Donna Kress in the 1959 episode, "The Case of Paul Drake's Dilemma."

Her final years were beset with misfortune. Her marriage to Sandrich ended in divorce, she was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1988, and she lost her home during an earthquake in 1989. The surgery she received for her cancer appeared to have been successful, and she believed she had been cured, however the disease returned. The last few years of her life were spent in very poor health, before her death at age 71 in the Motion Picture Country Home, Woodland Hills, California.

Brown has two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, for her contribution to motion pictures (at 1625 Vine Street) and for television (at 6528 Hollywood Boulevard).

Source: Wikipedia

Philip Morris PlayhousePhilip Morris Playhouse
Show Count: 9
Broadcast History: 1939 to 1949, November 1948 to July 1949, and March 1951 to September 1953
Sponsor: Philip Morris Cigarettes
Cast: Vincent Price, Dan Dailey, Cathy Lewis, Marlene Dietrich, Elliott Lewis, Howard Duff, Joseph Kearns, Sidney Miller, Jerry Hausner, James Mathews, William Conrad, Vanessa Brown, Lew Ayres, June Allyson, Robert Culp, Mandel Kramer, Peter Lorre, Everett Sloane, Ed Begley
Director: William Spier, Charles Martin
Producer: William Spier, Charles Martin
On Friday evenings at 8:30 pm, from 1939 until 1944, everyone who had a radio gathered round it to listed to the music, variety and drama offerings of Philip Morris Playhouse. It continued again in 1948 until 1951.
Broadcast: 23rd March 1958
Added: Mar 10 2011
Broadcast: 25th May 1952
Added: Jun 11 2011
Broadcast: March 27, 1949
Added: Mar 10 2018
Broadcast: 15th May 1949
Added: Jul 16 2011
Broadcast: 2nd January 1949
Added: Jan 02 2007
Broadcast: 7th August 1947
Added: Aug 07 2004
Broadcast: 24th May 1943
Added: May 28 2010
Broadcast: 29th September 1957
Starring: Vanessa Brown
Added: Oct 23 2008
Broadcast: 21st July 1946
Added: Jun 19 2009
Broadcast: 7th April 1957
Added: Feb 11 2011