Janet Blair


Actor
Janet Blair

About

Also Known As
Martha Janet Lafferty
Birth Place
Altoona, Pennsylvania
Born
April 23, 1921
Died
February 19, 2007
Cause of Death
Complications Of Pneumonia

Biography

Vivacious, honey-haired former band singer who turned to films after band leader Hal Kemp's death. Blair signed with Columbia and made her debut in "Three Girls on the Town" (1941). She gave one of her best performances as the title character, a slightly vacuous, man-attracting beauty, opposite plain-jane sister Rosalind Russell in the lively "My Sister Eileen" (1942), a romantic comedy ...

Family & Companions

Louis Busch
Husband
Pianist. Married in 1943; divorced in 1950.
Nick Mayo
Husband
Stage manager. Married on October 5, 1952; divorced in 1972.

Biography

Vivacious, honey-haired former band singer who turned to films after band leader Hal Kemp's death. Blair signed with Columbia and made her debut in "Three Girls on the Town" (1941). She gave one of her best performances as the title character, a slightly vacuous, man-attracting beauty, opposite plain-jane sister Rosalind Russell in the lively "My Sister Eileen" (1942), a romantic comedy of two sisters who move from Ohio to New York City's Greenwich Village. After a number of disappointing films and roles, Blair left film in 1948 and later had great success on stage in the touring production of "South Pacific" (1950-52). She also briefly replaced Nanette Fabray as Sid Caesar's "wife" on "Caesar's Hour" (1956-57). Blair made a handful of films in the 1950s and 60s, the best of which was the moody horror drama, "Burn, Witch, Burn/Night of the Eagle" (1962), in which she played a wife who resorts to witchcraft. She also co-starred with Henry Fonda on the short-lived TV series, "The Smith Family" (1971-72).

Life Events

1941

Film debut, "Three Girls About Town"

1948

Left films after appearing in "The Fuller Brush Man" and "Black Arrow"

1950

Made musical theater debut in touring company of "South Pacific"

1957

Returned to films to act in "Public Pigeon No. 1"

1968

last feature credit to date, "The One and Only, Genuine, Original Family Band"

Photo Collections

Gallant Journey - Publicity Still
Gallant Journey - Publicity Still
My Sister Eileen - Title Lobby Card
Here is the Title Lobby Card from My Sister Eileen (1942), starring Rosalind Russell and Janet Blair. 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.

Videos

Movie Clip

One And Only Original Genuine Family Band, The (1968) - Let's Put It Over With Grover The big number composed by Grandpa (Walter Brennan) for the 1888 re-nomination of President Grover Cleveland, performed by Buddy Ebsen, Janet Blair, Lesley-Ann Warren, Kurt Russell et al, composed by Richard M. and Robert B. Sherman, in Disney’s The One And Only, Genuine, Original Family Band, 1968.
My Sister Eileen (1942) -- Bustin' With Talent Dueling beaus Chic (Allyn Joslyn) and Lippincott (Richard Quine) joust over Eileen (Janet Blair), Ruth (Rosalind Russell) officiating until subway construction and various intruders (last Brian Aherne) overwhelm, in My Sister Eileen, 1942.
My Sister Eileen (1942) -- He's Not The Drug Store? Random gent (Chick Chandler) arrives looking for the previous tenant, confusing Eileen (Janet Blair) then Ruth (Rosalind Russell), "Wreck" (Gordon Jones) and wife (Jeff Donnell) then summoned, in My Sister Eileen, 1942.
Burn, Witch, Burn (1962) - You've Got Too Much Already Wrapping up the faculty bridge party, popular hosts Tansy (Janet Blair) and Norman (Peter Wyngarde) deflecting suggestive inquiries from Lindsay (Colin Gordon) and Flora (Margaret Johnston), then getting weirder afterward, in Burn, Witch, Burn, 1962.
Burn, Witch, Burn (1962) - She Was Ice Cold! Upwardly mobile social science professor Norman (Peter Wyngarde) has discovered wife Tansy (Janet Blair) has a hidden stash of witching gear, and an undue sense of longing for their time spent in Jamaica, in Burn, Witch, Burn, 1962.
Burn, Witch, Burn (1962) - Dispel All Evil Spirits The unusual but gratifying opening over black, the default announcer of the era Paul Frees declares the "motion picture you are about to see" free from devilment, before the credits, in Burn, Witch, Burn, 1962, starring Peter Wyngarde and Janet Blair.
Tonight And Every Night (1945) - I Often Dance To Him Terrific opening for Marc Platt in his first credited movie role, as Englishman "Tommy," auditioning pre-war at a London theater for "Tolly" (Florence Bates), Rita Hayworth and Janet Blair among the dancers watching, choreography by Jack Cole, in Tonight And Every Night, 1945.
Gallant Journey (1946) - The Only Way Down Santa Clara, California, 1905, inventor John Montgomery (Glenn Ford), medically precluded from flying, launches pal Dan (Jimmy Lloyd) on a test flight, girlfriend Regina (Janet Blair) and sponsor Father Kenton (Arthur Shields) cheering, in the William A. Wellman bio-pic Gallant Journey, 1946.
Gallant Journey (1946) - No Pantywaist Geezer Jim (Charlie Ruggles) regales local youth about little known California aviation pioneer John J. Montgomery (Glenn Ford, introduced in flashback), also smitten Regina (Janet Blair) and crusty dad (Willard Robertson), in William A. Wellman's bio-pic Gallant Journey, 1946.
My Sister Eileen (1942) -- Portugese Merchant Marine Sailors of the Portugese Merchant Marine have followed Ruth (Rosalind Russell) home to Greenwich Village where she and Eileen (Janet Blair) attempt to get them out of the apartment, in My Sister Eileen, 1942.

Trailer

Family

Fred Lafferty
Father
Church soloist and choir master.
Florence Lafferty
Mother
Louis Lafferty
Sister
Fred Lafferty Jr
Brother
Amanda Mayo
Daughter
Born 1959.
Andrew Mayo
Son
Born 1961.

Companions

Louis Busch
Husband
Pianist. Married in 1943; divorced in 1950.
Nick Mayo
Husband
Stage manager. Married on October 5, 1952; divorced in 1972.

Bibliography