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Vivian Blaine

Vivian Blaine

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Also Known As: Vivienne S Stapleton Died: December 9, 1995
Born: November 21, 1921 Cause of Death: congestive heart failure
Birth Place: Newark, New Jersey, USA Profession: Cast ... actor singer
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BIOGRAPHY

This strawberry blonde musical performer put in years in variety acts and as a bland screen cutie before proving her talent on Broadway. Born in Newark, New Jersey, Blaine was trouping in vaudeville and nightclubs while still in grade school. From 1935 through 1941 Blaine worked as a band singer; spotted by a 20th Century-Fox agent, she was signed by the studio in 1942.

Blaine made 11 films for Fox over the next four years, beginning with small roles in the drama "Through Different Eyes" and the comedy "Girl Trouble" (both 1942) With these exceptions her roles were in fluffy musicals and romantic comedies. Having threatened to quit unless her parts improved, Blaine played her first major role with the 1944 Carmen Miranda musical "Greenwich Village". Blaine teamed with Miranda again in "Something for the Boys" (1944) and "Doll Face" (1945), then went on to the pleasantly innocuous "Nob Hill" and "State Fair" (both 1945), "If I'm Lucky" and "Three Little Girls in Blue" (both 1946). Leaving films in frustration, she was touring in nightclub acts when her big chance arose.

Cast as moll Miss Adelaide in the 1950 Damon Runyon-based musical "Guys and Dolls", Blaine took the role and ran with it. It was re-written and enlarged for her, and her adenoidal doxy stole the show (the most famous of her songs was "Adelaide's Lament"). The toast of Broadway, Blaine re-created the role in the 1955 film version, but her movie career never really took off again. After two films ("Skirts Ahoy!", 1952, and "Public Pigeon No. 1", 1957), she returned to nightclubs and touring companies, returning to Broadway in "Say, Darling" in 1958 and "Enter Laughing" in 1963.

Blaine also made a number of television appearances, including the series "Those Two" (NBC, 1951-53) the special "Dream Girl" (NBC, 1955), and numerous guest spots on variety specials. In later years, she returned to films, but only supporting roles in low-budget efforts such as "Richard" (1972), "The Dark" (1979), "Parasite" (with a young Demi Moore, 1982) and "I'm Going to be Famous" (1982). Her roles in TV were somewhat larger: in the NBC pilot "Hereafter" (1975), as a neighbor on "Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman" (syndicated, 1975-77), and three 1979 TV movies, "Sooner or Later" (NBC), "Fast Friends" (NBC, co-starring with Carrie Snodgress), and "The Cracker Factory" (ABC, with Natalie Wood).

Contributions

Sven ( 2007-05-27 )

Source: Colin Briggs article in Classic Images;

Correction: Vivian Blaine was not divorced from her last husband Stuart Clark. He survived her at her death.
Additional information: Vivian Blaine also appeared on Broadway in Hatful of Rain with Steve McQueen, Company and briefly, Zorba. She appeared in Guys and Dolls in London including a command performance for Queen Elizabeth and she did a revival of Guys and Dolls at Lincoln Center Theater.

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