skip navigation
Joan Caulfield

Joan Caulfield

Up
Down

| VIEW ALL

TCM Messageboards
Post your comments here
ADD YOUR COMMENT>

share:

TCM Archive Materials VIEW ALL ARCHIVES (0)

Recent DVDs

 
 

Birth Of The Blues / Blue Skies (Double... Bing Crosby played a hugely influential role in American pop music for the first... more info $14.98was $14.98 Buy Now

Pony Express Rider DVD "Pony Express Rider" (1976) provides people with a nostalgic trip back to the... more info $7.98was $7.98 Buy Now

The Unsuspected DVD Tune in again, dear listeners. Same time, same spot on your radio dial for... more info $19.99was $19.99 Buy Now



Also Known As: Joan Beatrice Caulfield Died: June 18, 1991
Born: June 1, 1922 Cause of Death: cancer
Birth Place: Orange, New Jersey, USA Profession: actor, model

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Delicately pretty, demure Hollywood lead of the 1940s. A former cover-girl and Broadway ingenue, Caulfield exhibited a modest charm in light comedy, most notably opposite William Holden in "Dear Ruth" (1947) and "Dear Wife" (1950). She conveyed refined femininity and bland sophistication in a dozen-plus mediocre features, mostly at Paramount, from her debut in "Miss Susie Slagle's" (1944, released 1946), to her costarring role opposite Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire in the Irving Berlin musical "Blue Skies" (1946), to her later work in B westerns. By the 1950s, her upper middle-class blonde good looks and cultivated manner had been superseded by the more dramatic screen presence of Grace Kelly, her (more acclaimed) successor to the type. Throughout her film career, Caulfield remained active on stage, mostly in stock or touring productions of contemporary comedies. From 1950 to 1960 she was married to producer Frank Ross, who produced and directed her in "The Lady Says No" (1951), and produced "The Rains of Ranchipur" (1955), in which she played second fiddle to Lana Turner; and also Caulfield's live TV comedy series "My Favorite Husband" (1953-55), and "Sally" (1957-58).

Delicately pretty, demure Hollywood lead of the 1940s. A former cover-girl and Broadway ingenue, Caulfield exhibited a modest charm in light comedy, most notably opposite William Holden in "Dear Ruth" (1947) and "Dear Wife" (1950). She conveyed refined femininity and bland sophistication in a dozen-plus mediocre features, mostly at Paramount, from her debut in "Miss Susie Slagle's" (1944, released 1946), to her costarring role opposite Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire in the Irving Berlin musical "Blue Skies" (1946), to her later work in B westerns. By the 1950s, her upper middle-class blonde good looks and cultivated manner had been superseded by the more dramatic screen presence of Grace Kelly, her (more acclaimed) successor to the type.

Throughout her film career, Caulfield remained active on stage, mostly in stock or touring productions of contemporary comedies. From 1950 to 1960 she was married to producer Frank Ross, who produced and directed her in "The Lady Says No" (1951), and produced "The Rains of Ranchipur" (1955), in which she played second fiddle to Lana Turner; and also Caulfield's live TV comedy series "My Favorite Husband" (1953-55), and "Sally" (1957-58).

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Evil Spirits (1991)
2.
3.
 Hatfields and the Mccoys, The (1975) Sarah Mccoy
4.
 Magician, The (1973) Lulu
5.
 Buckskin (1968) Nora Johnson
6.
 Red Tomahawk (1967) Dakota Lil
7.
 Cattle King (1963) Sharleen Travers
8.
 The Rains of Ranchipur (1955) Fern Simon
9.
 The Lady Says No (1952) Dorinda Hatch
10.
 The Petty Girl (1950) Victoria Braymore
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1942:
Worked as a Harry Conover model; appeared on cover of LIFE magazine (May 11, 1942)
1940:
Acted with Morningside Players (date approximate)
1942:
Broadway debut as dumb blonde in George Abbott's production of the musical, "Beat the Band"
1943:
First starring Broadway role, "Kiss and Tell"
1944:
Signed a four-figure contract with Paramount, guaranteeing her a yearly option to work six months on Broadway
1944:
Starred in first feature, "Miss Susie Slagle's" (not released until 1946)
1945:
Appeared in a bit part in first feature to be released, "Duffy's Tavern"
:
Starred in several musicals and westerns
1948:
Toured with John Payne in "Voice of the Turtle"
1950:
TV debut in "Saturday's Children"
:
Appeared in summer stock productions of "Claudia" and "Dream Girl" in the early 1950s
:
Appeared in dramatic roles on numerous TV anthologies in the 1950s
:
Starred in live TV comedy series, "My Favorite Husband" opposite Barry Nelson
:
Co-produced and starred in TV series, "Sally"
:
Became vice president, North Star Company of Nevada, an oil-interest combine in the late 1950s
1962:
Appeared in stock producion of "Cactus Flower"
1963:
Returned to film after an eight-year hiatus in "Cattle King"
1965:
Named vice president of Lustre Shine Company Inc.
:
Made two Western programmers for A.C. Lyles, "Red Tomahawk" (1967) and "Buckskin" (1968)
:
Featured in TV series, "The High Chaparral"
:
Appointed vice president, TV programming, Donnelly Telecommunications
1987:
Made guest appearance on TV series, "Murder She Wrote"
1991:
Last feature film, "Evil Spirits"
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Miss Bean's School for Girls: -
Lincoln School of Teachers College: New York , New York -
Columbia University: New York , New York - 1940

Notes

In his unauthorized biography of author J.D. Salinger, Ian Hamilton claims that the name for the hero of "The Catcher in the Rye," Holden Caulfield, was a combination of a childhood friend--Holden--with Joan Caulfield, on whom Salinger had a crush.

"I didn't go Hollywood on the outside with flashy cars, upstairs maids and mink covered bathroom fixtures. I went Hollywood on the inside--and that's worst of all. . . . I played a character only in one picture--my first. From then on I was this movie star named Joan Caulfield. I tried to avoid being natural. I lowered my voice. I copied the mannerisms of other stars. I struck poses. I received bad advice--from dramatic coaches, from agents and from studio executives. I stopped being a human being. I blame myself and I blame Hollywood's star system." --Joan Caulfield to writer Erskine Johnson ("The Paramount Pretties" by James Robert Parish, 1972)

Companions close complete companion listing

companion:
Bing Crosby. Actor, singer, businessman. Co-starred with Caulfield in "Blue Skies" (1946), "Variety Girl" (1947) and "Welcome Stranger" (1947).
husband:
Frank Ross. Producer. Married on April 29, 1950; divorced on April 5, 1960; was married to Jean Arthur when he met Caulfield; born c. 1904; produced and directed Caulfield in "The Lady Says No" (1952) and produced "The Rains of Ranchipur" (1955); also produced her TV series "My Favorite Husband" (1953-55) and "Sally" (1957-58).
husband:
Robert Peterson. Dentist. Married on November 24, 1960; divorced in 1969.

Family close complete family listing

father:
Henry R Caulfield. Comptroller for Manhattan-based aircraft company.
sister:
Mary Parker. Eldest sister.
sister:
Bell Caulfield. Actor. Youngest sister; signed as Joan Caulfield's understudy for Broadway show, "Kiss and Tell" (1943).
son:
Caulfield Kevin Ross. Born on November 7, 1959; father, Frank Ross.
son:
John Peterson. Born on March 22, 1962; father, Robert Peterson.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

Contributions

Holz ( 2008-07-22 )

Source: not available

In her time was one of the screen's great beauties, many of her cameramen said she was one of the few women in Hollywood whom it was virtually impossible to photograph badly.

Please support TCMDB by adding to this information.

Click here to contribute