Sunday, February 6, 2011

Featured Icon: Mamie Van Doren


Joan Lucille Olander (born February 6, 1931), known professionally as Mamie Van Doren, is an American actress, model, singer and sex symbol, known for being one of the first "clones" of Marilyn Monroe. Van Doren is perhaps best remembered for bringing the rock 'n' roll-style of music alive in the B-musical Untamed Youth (1957), and for many other films of this exotic nature.

Van Doren was born Joan Lucille Olander in Rowena, South Dakota, the daughter of Warner Carl Olander (March 30, 1908 – June 4, 1992) and Lucille Harriet Bennett (January 21, 1912 – August 27, 1995). She is of three-quarters Swedish ancestry; the remainder is mixed English and German. Her mother named her after Joan Crawford. In 1939, the family moved to Sioux City, Iowa. In May 1942, they moved to Los Angeles.

On January 20, 1953, Van Doren signed a contract with Universal Studios. The studio had big plans for her, hoping she would bring the same kind of success that 20th Century Fox had with Marilyn Monroe, the reigning sex symbol of the era. Van Doren, whose signing day coincided with the inauguration of President Eisenhower, was given the first name Mamie for Ike's wife, Mamie Eisenhower.

Van Doren's first movie for Universal was Forbidden, playing a singer. She then made All-American
(1953), playing her first starring role as Susie Ward, a wayward girl who is the man-trap at a campus beer joint. This film also starred Tony Curtis. In Yankee Pasha starring Jeff Chandler and Rhonda Fleming, she played a slave girl, Lilith. In 1956 she played opposite a pre-fame Clint Eastwood in Star in the Dust.

Van Doren starred in several bad girl movies that later became cult films. She also appeared in some of the first movies to feature Rock & Roll music and became identified with this rebellious style, and made some rock records. In the film Untamed Youth in 1957, she was the first woman to sing rock and roll in a Hollywood musical (Eddie Cochran did the music for the film)


Read More:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mamie_Van_Doren





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