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Maria Montez

Maria Montez

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Ali Baba And The Forty Thieves... Jon Hall and Maria Montez star in this lush Technicolor adventure loosely... more info $19.98was $19.98 Buy Now



Also Known As: Died: September 7, 1951
Born: June 6, 1912 Cause of Death: heart attack
Birth Place: Barahona, Dominican Republic Profession:

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

An endearingly amateurish player, Maria Montez starred in a number of exotic programmers for Universal in the 1940s. The wealthy, convent-educated Montez was born in the Dominican Republic and spent her teens trouping through Europe with a theatrical group. A successful fashion model in the late 1930s, she was signed by Universal in 1941 and started her screen career playing bits in "The Invisible Woman" and "That Night in Rio" (both 1941). Montez worked her way up to bigger roles in "South of Tahiti" (also 1941) and "Bombay Clipper" (1942) before getting her first starring role, in the escapist showcase "Arabian Nights" (also 1942).Universal had hit upon a formula which proved popular throughout the war years: Montez, usually clad in a sarong or other diaphanous costume, while the hero (e.g., Jon Hall, Turhan Bey) saves her from cliff-hanging peril. Montez's sullen dark beauty and good nature managed to overshadow her stunning lack of acting skills, and she proved a box-office hit in such low-budget fare as "White Savage" (1943), "Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves" (1944), "Gypsy Wildcat" and "Sudan" (both 1945). The high--or low--point of her career was the jaw-droppingly camp "Cobra Woman" (1943), in...

An endearingly amateurish player, Maria Montez starred in a number of exotic programmers for Universal in the 1940s. The wealthy, convent-educated Montez was born in the Dominican Republic and spent her teens trouping through Europe with a theatrical group. A successful fashion model in the late 1930s, she was signed by Universal in 1941 and started her screen career playing bits in "The Invisible Woman" and "That Night in Rio" (both 1941). Montez worked her way up to bigger roles in "South of Tahiti" (also 1941) and "Bombay Clipper" (1942) before getting her first starring role, in the escapist showcase "Arabian Nights" (also 1942).

Universal had hit upon a formula which proved popular throughout the war years: Montez, usually clad in a sarong or other diaphanous costume, while the hero (e.g., Jon Hall, Turhan Bey) saves her from cliff-hanging peril. Montez's sullen dark beauty and good nature managed to overshadow her stunning lack of acting skills, and she proved a box-office hit in such low-budget fare as "White Savage" (1943), "Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves" (1944), "Gypsy Wildcat" and "Sudan" (both 1945). The high--or low--point of her career was the jaw-droppingly camp "Cobra Woman" (1943), in which Montez played twin rulers of a South Seas island entirely populated by chorus girls and over-acting villains.

Montez pretty much went out with the end of WWII. She and her husband, actor Jean-Pierre Aumont, moved to Europe in 1948 and made a handful of films: "Hans le Marin" (1948), "Le Portrait d'un assassin" (1949), "Il Ladro di Venezia/The Thief of Venice" (1950) and her last, "La Vengeance du Corsaire" (1951). Montez died of a heart attack while taking a hot saline bath in 1951; according to various sources she was somewhere between the ages of 31 and 39.

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Valdez Is Coming (1971) Anita
2.
 Siren of Atlantis (1949) Queen Antinea
3.
 The Exile (1947) The Countess [Anbella]
4.
 Pirates of Monterey (1947) Marguerita Novarro
5.
 Tangier (1946) Rita
6.
 Sudan (1945) Naila
7.
8.
 Follow the Boys (1944)
9.
 Bowery to Broadway (1944) Marina
10.
 Cobra Woman (1944) Tollea/Naja
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Notes

Montez's birthdate has variously been reported as 1912, 1918 and 1920.

Companions close complete companion listing

husband:
Jean-Pierre Aumont. Actor. Second husband, married until her death in 1951.

Family close complete family listing

daughter:
Tina Marquand. Actor. Born February 14, 1946 in Los Angeles, California; father Jean-Pierre Aumont.

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