“Forgotten Hollywood”- Passing Parade Claims Joan Leslie…

Posted on October 16, 2015 by raideoman1 | No Comments

Manny P. here… Joan_Leslie_1946

   Joan Leslie was a durable actress, who did her best work at Warner Brothers. She was quite memorable in some of the most iconic motion pictures, including High Sierra, Sergeant York, and Yankee Doodle Dandy. She worked opposite Oscar-worthy actors as Gary Cooper and James Cagney, while witnessing the ascent of Humphrey Bogart to A-List status.                      JOAN LESLIE —>

   In 1936, Leslie caught the attention of a talent scout from Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Just 11 years-of-age, she attended MGM’s Little Red Schoolhouse with other child actors like Mickey Rooney and Freddie Bartholomew. Her first film role was in Camille, a romantic drama starring Greta Garbo and Robert Taylor. Constantly on loan to other studios, Joan had small parts in Love Affair and Foreign Correspondent.

   Signing a contract at Warner Brothers in 1941, Leslie hit her stride. Her sweet innocent persona kept the star constantly working. Her string of fine performances continued in The Male Animal, The Wagons Roll Out at Night (again with Bogie), The Hard Way (again with Ida Lupino), This is the Army, Thank Your Lucky Stars, Hollywood Canteen (as herself), Rhapsody in Blue, and Cinderella Jones. During World War II, Leslie was a regular volunteer at the actual Hollywood Canteen, where she danced with servicemen and granted hundreds of autographs. On radio, she reprised her role from Yankee Doodle Dandy in 1942.

joan leslie and james cagney

JOAN LESLIE                            JAMES CAGNEY

   By 1946, she took Warner Brothers to court in order to get released from her contract. As a result of this, Jack Warner used his influence to blacklist her from other major studios. Joan spent the rest of her career making movies at lots along Poverty Row, primarily co-starring in Westerns. She settled into television, appearing as a guest star in Branded, Police Story, Charlie’s Angels, The Incredible Hulk, Simon & Simon, and Murder She Wrote. She retired from acting in 1991.

   In 1999, she was one of the 250 actresses nominated for the American Film Institute’s selection of the 25 greatest female screen legends to have debuted before 1950. She also received a Star along Hollywood’s Walk of Fame. She was involved with charity work for the St. Anne’s Maternity Home for more than 50 years.

   With a career that spanned over six decades, Joan Leslie was 90.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

This entry was posted on Friday, October 16th, 2015 at 12:01 am and is filed under Blog by Manny Pacheco. You can follow any comments to this post through the RSS 2.0 feed. Responses are currently closed, but you can trackback from your own site.


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