Debbie Reynolds


Actor
Debbie Reynolds

About

Also Known As
Mary Frances Reynolds
Birth Place
El Paso, Texas, USA
Born
April 01, 1932
Died
December 28, 2016

Biography

Entertainer Debbie Reynolds embodied the cheerful bounce and youthful innocence of the post World War II era, buoying the genre's goodnatured hokum with her sincere charm and energy. One of a long line of girls-next-door like Doris Day and June Allyson, Reynolds was never as sultry as Day could be, and was more of a showbiz cheerleader and less of a tomboy than either. In her most succes...

Photos & Videos

The Mating Game - Scene Stills
The Catered Affair - Advertising Art
Bundle of Joy - Publicity Still

Family & Companions

Eddie Fisher
Husband
Singer, actor. Married on September 26, 1955; divorced in May 1959.
Harry Karl
Husband
Shoe magnate, producer. Married November 25, 1960; divorced 1973.
Richard Hamlett
Husband
Real estate developer. Married 1985; filed for divorce 1994; divorced May 1996.

Bibliography

"Debbie: My Life"
Debbie Reynolds and David Patrick Columbia (1988)
"If I Knew Then"
Debbie Reynolds (1963)

Notes

Her singles, "Tammy" and "Aba Daba Honeymoon" were certified gold records.

She is Head of Harmon Productions.

Biography

Entertainer Debbie Reynolds embodied the cheerful bounce and youthful innocence of the post World War II era, buoying the genre's goodnatured hokum with her sincere charm and energy. One of a long line of girls-next-door like Doris Day and June Allyson, Reynolds was never as sultry as Day could be, and was more of a showbiz cheerleader and less of a tomboy than either. In her most successful films like "Tammy and the Bachelor" (1957) and "Singin' in the Rain" (1952), she was often cast as a sincere young adult in the throes of puppy love - never the virgin chased by rogues like Day or the placid housewife like Allyson. Her squeaky clean image came in handy when, in the biggest Hollywood scandal of the 1950s, her then-husband, crooner Eddie Fisher, left her and their two children, Carrie and Todd, for sultry screen goddess, Elizabeth Taylor. Not surprisingly, the public was more than on Reynolds' side as the jilted wife. Once that furor died down, Reynolds was left to reinvent herself.

In the late 1960s, when new sexual mores suddenly rendered the docile suburban female image a thing of the past, Reynolds shifted her focus to nightclub and theatrical stages. She was absent from the big screen for decades but settled into a comfortable presence in the American fabric by returning to film in the 1990s with funny mom roles in films like "Mother" (1996) and "In and Out" (1997) and hysterical guest appearances as the over-the-top mother of Grace Adler (Debra Messing) on "Will & Grace" (NBC, 1998-2006). Reynolds brought both self-mocking and nostalgia to these and other well-received comedic outings, using her persona as a perennially perky throwback to mine genuine laughs well into her 70s.

Mary Frances Reynolds was born in El Paso, TX, on April 1, 1932. Her railroad worker father moved the family to Southern California when Reynolds was young, and growing up in Burbank, Reynolds performed with the town symphony and was active in school plays. When she was 16, she was crowned Miss Burbank in a beauty contest and subsequently MGM and Warner Bros. courted her for a movie contract. The latter won out, but Reynolds mostly treaded water there for two years, playing only a modest part in "The Daughter of Rosie O'Grady" (1950). She moved to MGM in 1950 and made an instant impression in small roles in her first two films, impersonating 1920s "boop-oop-a-doop" singer Helen Kane in the biopic "Three Little Words" (1950) and teaming with equally cute boy-next-door Carleton Carpenter in "Two Weeks with Love" (1950), which included a high-speed rendition of the novelty song "Aba Daba Honeymoon" that hit No. 3 on the Billboard charts. The studio and directors Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen responded by casting her in a leading role, complete with star billing, in the brilliant musical, "Singin' in the Rain" (1952). Her pleasant alto sold several old-time song standards and Reynolds, not a trained hoofer, literally danced her feet raw to keep up buoyantly onscreen with Kelly and Donald O'Connor. Best of all, her acting conveyed the sincerity of the aspiring neophyte that was both the role and the performer. Just like her role in "Singin' in the Rain," a star was born.

During her tenure at MGM, Reynolds performed primarily in musicals; none of which approached the landmark status of her first big success. The underrated "Give a Girl a Break" (1953) was full of ideas and energy, but as was typical of MGM and the studio system, "Athena" (1954) and "Hit the Deck" (1955) were too formulaic. The lively and playful comedienne overdid the teen boisterousness in "Susan Slept Here" (1954) but had a more successful foray into romantic comedy with "The Tender Trap" (1955). A standout was her most sober film of the period - one of only two or three dramas she ever acted in - "A Catered Affair" (1956), where Reynolds provided tender and quietly touching work that her sis-boom-ba roles rarely called upon. As the studio system disintegrated, Reynolds turned to freelancing, enjoying a big hit with "Tammy and the Bachelor" (1957), whose theme song, the highly sentimental but equally memorable "Tammy," gave Reynolds a second smash hit single (five weeks at No. 1). The film also marked one of the occasional "country girl" roles which she would also play in "The Mating Game" (1958).

Reynolds had begun appearing on TV by this time, and was a semi-regular on "The Eddie Fisher Show" (NBC, 1953-57), starring the popular crooner Reynolds had wed in 1955. Together, Reynolds and Fisher were second only to Tony Curtis and Janet Leigh as "America's Sweethearts."

The first of several unsuccessful marriages showed its sour side in 1958, when Fisher announced that he was leaving Reynolds for Elizabeth Taylor, the widow of his recently deceased best friend, producer Mike Todd, who had perished in a plane crash. The attendant public sympathy for Reynolds - now a single mother of two - meshed well with her wholesome screen persona, which had fully matured by the time of "This Happy Feeling" (1958). At the time of the scandal of all scandals, Reynolds ranked as one of the top ten box office stars in both 1959 and 1960.

In 1962, she joined the all-star cast of the Oscar-nominated epic "How the West Was Won" and two years later starred in the screen adaptation of the aptly titled musical, "The Unsinkable Molly Brown" (1964), one of her best vehicles, and one which earned her a Best Actress Oscar nomination. Raising her two children, future director Todd Fisher and future actress and author Carrie Fisher, kept Reynolds busy; her screen career, which relied to some extent on her youthful, girlish qualities, slowly began to decline. Worse, the new frankness in films began to date her image. When she finally did try a Doris Day-style sex farce with "Divorce American Style" (1967) and "How Sweet It Is" (1968), even that vogue was waning. A few TV spots and a first try at a series, "The Debbie Reynolds Show/Debbie" (NBC, 1969-1970) did little to stem the tide. Her last feature acting for over 20 years, though, was striking. "What's the Matter with Helen?" (1971), a late entry in the often unpleasant "aging female star" horror subgenre, was redeemed by a very offbeat story, Curtis Harrington's directorial flair, and fine acting.

Effectively out of films before age 40, Reynolds enjoyed smash success on Broadway with a revival of the old musical chestnut "Irene" in 1973, played the London Palladium in a 1975 revue, and polished to a lively sparkle the nightclub talent she had first tested earlier in her career. Live performing kept Reynolds busiest for the next 20 years, though she occasionally surfaced in a the recurring role of the title character's acerbic mother on the sitcom "Alice" (CBS, 1976-1985) and did likewise on "Jennifer Slept Here" (NBC, 1983-84). She tried her hand at helming another series with the unsuccessful "Aloha Paradise" (ABC, 1981), a "Fantasy Island/Love Boat" rip-off with Reynolds as a female Ricardo Montalban, and enjoyed a feisty role as a woman cop teamed with her son in the TV movie, "Sadie and Son" (CBS, 1987).

She also basked in the boom of nostalgia for her studio heyday when she purchased a Las Vegas hotel and casino and added a Hollywood Movie Museum packed with the memorabilia she had been collecting for decades. The largest collection of its kind in the world, Reynolds' memorabilia included over 40,000 costumes including Dorothy's ruby slippers and the white dress Marilyn Monroe wore in her infamous 1952 LIFE magazine photo spread. Ever the hard worker, Reynolds performed constantly at her own hotel's nightclub to make the enterprise fly, and her love of the work and her finely honed presence kept her venture afloat.

After being known for decades as "the mother of Princess Leia" after daughter Carrie struck iconic status with her role in "Star Wars" (1977), Reynolds blithely withstood gossip surrounding her daughter's 1987 novel, Postcards from the Edge when wags assumed it was actually about their actual relationship. Even Mike Nichols' 1990 film version made the mother into something of a attention-craving gorgon. Fisher always said it was an homage to her mother, not an exact portrait of their sometimes strained relationship.

The ensuing decade saw Reynolds own return to the big screen, first in Oliver Stone's "Heaven and Earth" (1993). Her renaissance really began when, at her daughter's suggestion, Albert Brooks cast Reynolds in the title role of his critically acclaimed "Mother" (1996). Reynolds received raves for her rich characterization of a sunny and loving but subtly disapproving and forbidding parent. The widespread attention she received helped pave the way for her casting as Kevin Kline's mother in "In and Out" (1997). The following year, she starred as a magical matriarch in the Disney Channel Original Movie "Halloweentown" (1998) and went on to make regular guest appearances on the hit sitcom "Will & Grace" as Grace's highly critical entertainer mother. She worked steadily as a voice actor in family fare, including "The Rugrats" (Nickelodeon, 1991-2004) and "Kim Possible" (Disney Channel, 2002-07) and well past the normal retirement age, Reynolds maintained a busy stage schedule as a song and dance gal on the casino and resort circuit.

Filmography

 

Cast (Feature Film)

Bright Lights: Starring Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds (2016)
Herself
Behind the Candelabra (2013)
One for the Money (2012)
Carol Channing: Larger Than Life (2011)
Herself
These Amazing Shadows (2011)
Herself
The Boys: The Sherman Brothers' Story (2009)
Herself
Return to Halloweentown (2006)
Connie and Carla (2004)
Self
Connie and Carla (2004)
Herself
These Old Broads (2001)
Piper Grayson
Rugrats in Paris - The Movie (2000)
Voice
Gift of Love: The Daniel Huffman Story (1999)
Keepers of the Frame (1999)
Zack & Reba (1998)
The Christmas Wish (1998)
Ruth "Gram" Martin
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998)
Voice
In & Out (1997)
Wedding Bell Blues (1996)
Self
Mother (1996)
Wedding Bell Blues (1996)
Herself
That's Entertainment! III (1994)
Heaven and Earth (1993)
Battling for Baby (1992)
Helen Jeffries
The Bodyguard (1992)
Herself
MGM: When the Lion Roars (1992)
Perry Mason: Case of the Musical Murder (1989)
Kiki's Delivery Service (1989)
Voice
Sadie and Son (1987)
That's Entertainment! (1974)
Narrator
Charlotte's Web (1973)
Voice
What's the Matter with Helen? (1971)
Adelle [Bruckner]
How Sweet It Is! (1968)
Jenny Henderson
Divorce American Style (1967)
Barbara Harmon
The Singing Nun (1965)
Sister Ann
Goodbye Charlie (1964)
Charlie, a female
The Unsinkable Molly Brown (1964)
Molly Brown
How the West Was Won (1963)
Lilith Prescott
My Six Loves (1963)
Janice Courtney
Mary Mary (1963)
Mary McKellaway
The Pleasure of His Company (1961)
Jessica Poole
The Second Time Around (1961)
Lucretia Rogers
Pepe (1961)
The Rat Race (1960)
Peggy Brown
The Gazebo (1960)
Nell Nash
Say One for Me (1959)
Holly LaMaise
It Started with a Kiss (1959)
Maggie Putnam
The Mating Game (1959)
Mariette Larkin
This Happy Feeling (1958)
Janet Blake
Tammy and the Bachelor (1957)
Tammy
The Catered Affair (1956)
Jane Hurley
Bundle of Joy (1956)
Polly Parrish
Meet Me in Las Vegas (1956)
Hit the Deck (1955)
Carol Pace
The Tender Trap (1955)
Julie Gillis
Susan Slept Here (1954)
Susan Landis Christopher
Athena (1954)
Minerva [Mulvain]
Give a Girl a Break (1954)
Suzy Doolittle
I Love Melvin (1953)
Judy LeRoy
The Affairs of Dobie Gillis (1953)
Pansy Hammer
Singin' in the Rain (1952)
Kathy Selden
Skirts Ahoy! (1952)
Herself
Mr. Imperium (1951)
Gwen
Three Little Words (1950)
Helen Kane
The Daughter of Rosie O'Grady (1950)
Maureen O'Grady
Two Weeks with Love (1950)
Melba Robinson
June Bride (1948)
Boo's girl friend

Music (Feature Film)

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998)
Song Performer
The Big Lebowski (1998)
Song Performer
Wedding Bell Blues (1996)
Song Performer
Yotzim Kavua (1979)
Song Performer ("Tammy")

Misc. Crew (Feature Film)

Carol Channing: Larger Than Life (2011)
Other
The Boys: The Sherman Brothers' Story (2009)
Other
The Bodyguard (1992)
Other

Director (Special)

Letter to My Mother (1998)
Director

Cast (Special)

Mr. Warmth: The Don Rickles Project (2007)
Herself
Las Vegas Live! (2004)
Interviewee
Tracey Ullman in the Trailer Tales (2003)
POPS GOES THE FOURTH! (2001)
The Trail of the Ruby Slippers: The E! True Hollywood Story (2000)
Interviewee
Ann Miller: I'm Still Here (2000)
Intimate Portrait: Eva Gabor (1999)
Intimate Portrait: Debbie Reynolds and Carrie Fisher (1998)
Frank Sinatra: The E! True Hollywood Story (1998)
Interviewee
All-Star Moms (1997)
The 69th Annual Academy Awards (1997)
Presenter
Las Vegas (1996)
Carrie Fisher: The Hollywood Family (1995)
Betty Grable: Behind the Pin-Up (1995)
Liberace: Mr. Showmanship (1995)
Interviewee
Debbie Reynolds (1995)
Legend to Legend Night (1993)
Bob Hope & Friends: Making New Memories (1991)
Stars and Stripes: Hollywood and World War II (1991)
The Thalians (1991)
Jack Paar Is Alive and Well! (1987)
Happy Birthday, Hollywood! (1987)
The 58th Annual Academy Awards Presentation (1986)
Presenter
The American Film Institute Salute to Gene Kelly (1985)
Performer
Bob Hope's Happy Birthday Homecoming (1985)
Circus of the Stars (1982)
Ringmaster
Bob Hope Special: Bob Hope's Women I Love - Beautiful but Funny (1982)
The All-Star Salute to Mother's Day (1981)
Leapin' Lizards, It's Liberace (1978)
Bing!... A 50th Anniversary Gala (1977)
Bob Hope Special: Bob Hope's Bicentennial Star-Spangled Spectacular (1976)
The Perry Como Sunshine Show (1974)
Opening Night: U.S.A. (1972)
Debbie Reynolds and the Sound of Children (1969)
Host
And Debbie Makes Six (1967)
Host
A Date with Debbie (1960)
Host
Hedda Hopper's Hollywood (1960)
Guest
Operation Entertainment (1954)

Music (Special)

Lifetime's 4th Annual Women Rock! Songs From The Movies (2003)
Song Performer

Misc. Crew (Special)

Mr. Warmth: The Don Rickles Project (2007)
Other

Cast (Short)

That's Entertainment! (Gala Premiere) (1974)
Herself
Just One More Time (1974)
Herself
The Story of a Dress (1964)
Herself
A Visit with Debbie Reynolds (1959)
Herself
Challenge the Wilderness (1951)
Narrator

Cast (TV Mini-Series)

Halloweentown High (2004)
Halloweentown 2: Kalabar's Revenge (2001)
Halloweentown (1998)

Life Events

1948

Signed with Warner Bros.; appeared fleetingly in a bit part in "June Bride"

1950

Feature acting debut, "The Daughter of Rosie O'Grady"

1950

Signed by MGM; impersonated 1920s singing star Helen Kane in her first MGM film "Three Little Words"

1950

Performed in "Two Weeks with Love"; duet with Carleton Carpenter became a hit song much-associated with both, "Aba Daba Honeymoon"

1952

Acted in first feature lead and recorded original soundtrack album for "Singin' in the Rain"

1952

Appeared on stage in "Stars of Tomorrow" at the Bliss-Hayden Theater in Los Angeles, CA

1954

First starring vehicle not made at MGM, "Susan Slept Here"; made on loan-out to RKO

1957

Had No. 1 hit single on pop charts with the song "Tammy" from the film "Tammy and the Bachelor"; topped the singles charts for five weeks

1957

Appeared as regular performer on variety series "The Eddie Fisher Show" (NBC)

1957

Stopped acting on a near-exclusive basis for MGM; maintained some contractual arrangements with the studio and worked there occasionally through the mid 1960s, but also began freelancing

1959

Embroiled in press scandal when it came out that Elizabeth Taylor was romantically involved with husband Eddie Fisher

1960

Hosted first TV variety special "A Date With Debbie"

1961

First began doing nightclub work

1964

Received an Oscar nomination as Best Actress for "The Unsinkable Molly Brown"

1967

Hosted own TV special "And Debbie Makes Six"

1969

Starred in first TV series, the NBC sitcom "The Debbie Reynolds Show"; also performed theme song; played role of Debbie Thompson

1971

Last acting role in a feature film for over 20 years, "What's the Matter with Helen?"

1971

Turned down role of Bobbie in Mike Nichols drama "Carnal Knowledge"; role played by Ann-Margret

1973

Provided the voice of Charlotte for the animated feature "Charlotte's Web"

1973

Starred on Broadway in a revival of the musical "Irene"

1974

Last feature film appearance for nearly 20 years: served as one of the narrators of the popular musical compilation film "That's Entertainment!"

1975

Starred in one-woman performance "The Debbie Reynolds Show" at the London Palladium

1977

Played the title role of Annie Oakley in productions of the musical "Annie Get Your Gun" staged in Los Angeles and San Francisco

1981

Returned to Broadway to take over lead role in musical version of "Woman of the Year," previously played by Lauren Bacall and Raquel Welch

1981

Starred as Sydney Chase on short-lived ABC comedy-drama anthology series "Aloha Paradise"

1983

Played recurring guest role as the title character's mother Alice Farrell on NBC's "Jennifer Slept Here," starring Ann Jillian

1984

Created and starred in own exercise video "Do It Debbie's Way"; released second exercise video "Couples (Do It Debbie's Way)" in 1988

1987

Starred in first TV-movie, "Sadie and Son" (CBS)

1988

Released memoir <i>Debbie: My Life</i>

1989

Toured nationally with a production of "The Unsinkable Molly Brown"

1991

Hosted "Movie Memories with Debbie Reynolds" (AMC), where she introduced Hollywood films of yore, and talked with the stars after the film ended; series also marked producing debut

1992

Made cameo appearance as herself in the drama feature "The Bodyguard"

1993

Returned to features to play a supporting role in Oliver Stone's "Heaven and Earth"

1994

Returned as one of the hosts of the compilation documentary feature "That's Entertainment III," revisiting the days of the classic MGM musical

1994

Opened the Debbie Reynolds Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, NV, which she bought around 1991 and renovated for several years; also opened the Hollywood Movie Museum, filled with Hollywood artifacts she collected for years; regularly performed her nightclub act at the theater inside the complex

1996

First leading role in a feature in 25 years, cast by Albert Brooks in title role of "Mother"

1997

Received second star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (January), award originally approved in 1987, but was not bestowed for ten years

1998

Debbie Reynolds Hotel and Casino sold at auction; retained contents of Hollywood Museum

1998

Starred in Disney Channel Original Movie "Halloweentown"

1999

Landed recurring role as Grace's (Debra Messing) overbearing mom on hit NBC sitcom "Will & Grace"

2001

Co-starred in ABC movie "These Old Broads" alongside Shirley MacLaine, Elizabeth Taylor, and Joan Collins; co-written by daughter Carrie Fisher and Elaine Pope

2003

Voiced the recurring character Nana Possible on animated series "Kim Possible"

2004

Appeared as herself in comedy feature "Connie and Carla"

2004

Reprised role in "Halloweentown High" (Disney Channel)

2006

Made third appearance in Disney Channel's "Return to Halloweentown"

2012

Returned to features in big screen adaptation of "One for the Money," based on Janet Evanovich's novel and starring Katherine Heigl as bounty hunter Stephanie Plum

2013

Appeared as Frances Liberace in TV biopic "Behind the Candelabra"

2016

Appeared with daughter Carrie Fisher in an HBO documentary about their relationship, "Bright Lights: Starring Debbie Reynolds & Carrie Fisher"

Photo Collections

The Mating Game - Scene Stills
Here are a few scene stills from The Mating Game (1959), starring Debbie Reynolds and Tony Randall.
The Catered Affair - Advertising Art
Here are a few pieces of advertising art prepared by MGM to publicize The Catered Affair (1956), starring Bette Davis, Ernest Borgnine, and Debbie Reynolds.
Bundle of Joy - Publicity Still
Bundle of Joy - Publicity Still
Susan Slept Here - Movie Posters
Susan Slept Here - Movie Posters
An American in Paris - Behind-the-Scenes Photos
Here are a number of photos taken behind-the-scenes during production of MGM's An American in Paris (1951), directed by Vincente Minnelli and starring Gene Kelly and Leslie Caron.
The Tender Trap - Lobby Cards
Here are a few Lobby Cards from MGM's The Tender Trap (1955), starring Frank Sinatra and Debbie Reynolds. Lobby Cards were 11" x 14" posters that came in sets of 8. As the name implies, they were most often displayed in movie theater lobbies, to advertise current or coming attractions.
How the West Was Won - Program Book
Here is the souvenir Program Book sold at Roadshow engagements for the 1962 epic in Cinerama, How the West Was Won.
The Unsinkable Molly Brown - Behind-the-Scenes Photos
Here are a few photos taken behind-the-scenes of The Unsinkable Molly Brown (1964), starring Debbie Reynolds and directed by Charles Walters.
The Gazebo - Publicity Stills
Here are a few photos taken to help publicize The Gazebo (1959), starring Glenn Ford and Debbie Rynolds. Publicity stills were specially-posed photos, usually taken off the set, for purposes of publicity or reference for promotional artwork.
The Tender Trap - Behind-the-Scenes Photos
Here are a number of photos taken behind-the-scenes during production of The Tender Trap (1955), starring Frank Sinatra, Debbie Reynolds, David Wayne, and Celeste Holm.
The Tender Trap - Publicity Stills
Here are several stills taken to help publicize MGM's The Tender Trap (1955), starring Frank Sinatra, Debbie Reynolds, David Wayne, and Celeste Holm. Publicity stills were specially-posed photos, usually taken off the set, for purposes of publicity or reference for promotional artwork.
Hit the Deck - Movie Poster
Here is the insert movie poster for Hit the Deck (1955), starring Jane Powell, Tony Martin, Debbie Rynolds, and Vic Damone.
Hit the Deck - Behind-the-Scenes Photos
Here are a few photos taken behind-the-scenes during production of MGM's Hit the Deck (1955), starring Jane Powell, Tony Martin, and Debbie Reynolds.

Videos

Movie Clip

Give A Girl A Break (1954) - Applause, Applause Finally on-stage for the big show that gives the movie its name, Bob (Bob Fosse) and Suzy (Debbie Reynolds) perform Applause, Applause, by Burton Land and Ira Gershwin, in Give A Girl A Break, 1954, directed by Stanley Donen.
Singin' In The Rain (1952) - All I Do Is Dream Of You The studio boss (Millard Mitchell) after a talking-picture demo, with Cosmo (Donald O’Connor) pal of star Don (Gene Kelly), who’s delighted to find snooty Cathy (Debbie Reynolds) doing a cheesecake gig, song by Nacio Herb Brown and producer Arthur Freed, bimbo Lina (Jean Hagen) getting pied, in Singin’ In The Rain, 1952.
Singin' In The Rain (1952) - I'm Not An Actor! After the premiere, silent-movie star Don Lockwood (Gene Kelly) with musical partner Cosmo (Donald O’Connor) in Hollywood, gets mobbed and, with a coy contemporary-swashbuckling escape, meets opinionated Cathy (Debbie Reynolds), early in MGM’s Singin’ In The Rain, 1952.
Singin' In The Rain (1951) - Zelda's Kid Sister In the “Revolution In Hollywood” montage, Rita Moreno as “Zelda” in the cocktail shaker routine and the cutaways, with four Nacio Herb Brown and Arthur Freed tunes, Jimmy Thompson the crooner, Debbie Reynolds with him as Kathy, Millard Mitchell the studio boss, Donald O’Connor as Cosmo, Tommy Farrell as Sid the A-D, in Singin’ In The Rain, 1951.
Singin' In The Rain (1951) - That Famous Zip Girl In fact the greater part of Rita Moreno’s performance as flapper movie star “Zelda Zanders,” in Singin’ In The Rain, 1951, at the opening of the Gene Kelly/Jean Hagen (Don Lockwood, Lina Lamont) movie, introduced by Madge Blake, Stuart Holmes her “eligible bachelor.”
Athena (1954) - Harmonize Perturbed lawyer Adam (Edmund Purdom) at the home of mystically inclined fitness nuts, Louis Calhern as Grandpa, Jane Powell the title character, Debbie Reynolds and Vic Damone in chorus, and Steve Reeves the disdainful body-builder, another Martin & Blane song, in MGM’s Athena, 1954.
Rack, The (1956) - Traitor We don’t know what’s up with just-returned Korean War POW Ed (Paul Newman), except that he’s afraid of his family, and doesn’t want to leave the hospital, as he takes in the entertainment (Debbie Reynolds in MGM’s The Affairs Of Dobie Gillis), and fellow patient Lee Marvin gives us a clue, in MGM’s The Rack, 1956.
Mating Game, The (1959) - Open, My Place Paul Douglas, playing "Pop Larkin," narrates the opening, leading to co-star Debbie Reynolds singing the title tune, in The Mating Game, 1959, also starring Tony Randall.
Mating Game, The (1959) - Under My Skin Without warning, auditor Lorenzo (Tony Randall), given a "special" drink, leaps into Cole Porter's "Under My Skin," baffling Mariette (Debbie Reynolds), her family, and his boss (Fred Clark) in The Mating Game, 1959.
Mating Game, The (1959) - Irresponsible People Mariette (Debbie Reynolds), daughter of the tax-cheat, has lured auditor Lorenzo (Tony Randall) to her favorite spot, where he confesses his ambition, in The Mating Game, 1959.
Affairs Of Dobie Gillis, The (1953) - Learn Learn Learn Work Work Work At the freshman dance at Grainbelt U, title character Bobby Van still hasn’t got the name of the cute brunette (Debbie Reynolds), sidekick George (Bob Fosse) has problems, and she calls her parents (Hanley Stafford, Lurene Tuttle), in The Affairs Of Dobie Gillis, 1953, from the stories by Max Shulman.
How The West Was Won (1962) - In The Spirit Of Your Forefathers Trapper Rawlings (James Stewart) is planning revenge on merchant bandit Hawkins (Walter Brennan) and crew, even as he’s fleecing bible beating Prescott (Karl Malden) and his clan (Agnes Moorehead, Debbie Reynolds, Carroll Baker et al), mayhem ensuing, in director Henry Hathaway’s segment of How The West Was Won, 1962.

Trailer

Singin' in the Rain - (Original Trailer) A silent screen swashbuckler (Gene Kelly) finds love while trying to adjust to the coming of sound in Singin' in the Rain (1952), directed by Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen.
Susan Slept Here - (Original Trailer) A Hollywood screenwriter (Dick Powell) takes in a runaway girl (Debbie Reynolds) who's more woman than he can handle. Directed by Frank Tashlin and narrated by an Oscar statuette.
Give a Girl a Break - (Original Trailer) The dancing team Marge and Gower Champion star in Give A Girl A Break (1954) with support from Debbie Reynolds and Bob Fosse.
Daughter of Rosie O'Grady, The - (Original Trailer) Against her widowed father's wishes, a vaudeville star's daughter takes to the stage in The Daughter of Rosie O'Grady (1950).
Athena - (Original Trailer) A society lawyer falls in love with the daughter (Jane Powell) of a family of fitness fanatics in Athena (1954).
That's Entertainment! - (Original Trailer) An all-star cast, including Frank Sinatra and Fred Astaire, introduce clips from MGM's greatest musicals in That's Entertainment! (1974).
Bundle of Joy - (Original Trailer) A shop girl is mistaken for the mother of a foundling in the musical remake of Bachelor Mother, Bundle of Joy (1956), starring Eddie Fisher & Debbie Reynolds.
Two Weeks With Love - (Original Trailer) Two sisters (Jane Powell, Debbie Reynolds) find romance during a turn-of-the-century family vacation in MGM's Technicolor musical Two Weeks With Love (1950).
Unsinkable Molly Brown, The - (Original Trailer) A backwoods girl strikes it rich in Colorado and crashes high society in The Unsinkable Molly Brown (1964) starring Debbie Reynolds.
Rat Race, The - (Original Trailer) A musician (Tony Curtis) newly arrived in New York takes in a taxi dancer (Debbie Reynolds) in the drama The Rat Race (1960).
Skirts Ahoy! - (Original Trailer) Three women join the Navy to find husbands in the MGM Technicolor musical Skirts Ahoy! (1952) starring Esther Williams.
June Bride - (Original Trailer) Two bickering reporters turn a small-town wedding into a battleground in Warner Bros.' June Bride (1948), starring Bette Davis and Robert Montgomery.

Promo

Family

Raymond F Reynolds
Father
Railroad carpenter; worked for the Southern Pacific Railroad.
Maxene Reynolds
Mother
Born c. 1912.
Carrie Frances Fisher
Daughter
Actor, author. Born October 21, 1956; father Eddie Fisher.
Todd Emmanuel Fisher
Son
TV commercial director. Born February 24, 1958; father Eddie Fisher; produced first feature film, "Twogether" (1992).
Denise Karl
Step-Daughter
Father Harry Karl.
Harrison Karl
Step-Son
Father Harry Karl.
Tina Marie Karl
Step-Daughter
Father Harry Karl.

Companions

Eddie Fisher
Husband
Singer, actor. Married on September 26, 1955; divorced in May 1959.
Harry Karl
Husband
Shoe magnate, producer. Married November 25, 1960; divorced 1973.
Richard Hamlett
Husband
Real estate developer. Married 1985; filed for divorce 1994; divorced May 1996.

Bibliography

"Debbie: My Life"
Debbie Reynolds and David Patrick Columbia (1988)
"If I Knew Then"
Debbie Reynolds (1963)

Notes

Her singles, "Tammy" and "Aba Daba Honeymoon" were certified gold records.

She is Head of Harmon Productions.