Joan Banks

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Joan Banks
Joan Banks 1937.JPG
Joan Banks in 1937
Born Joan Banks
October 30, 1918
Petersburg, West Virginia
Died January 18, 1998(1998-01-18) (aged 79)
Los Angeles, California
Nationality American
Occupation Actress

Joan Banks (October 30, 1918 – January 18, 1998) was an American film, television, stage and radio actress (described as "a soapbox queen")[1] who often appeared in dramas with her husband, Frank Lovejoy.

Early life[edit]

Born in Petersburg, West Virginia, Banks attended a school of Russian ballet as a little girl and excelled in swimming as a high school student.[2] Also, her acting talent earned her a scholarship to the American Academy of Dramatic Art.[3]

Career[edit]

Radio[edit]

Banks first appeared on radio with Walter O'Keefe in 1936, when she was 18.[2] Her roles on radio programs included the following:

Program Role
The O'Neills Peggy O'Neill Kayden[2]
My Friend Irma Jane Stacy [4]
The Home of the Brave[5] N/A
Her Honor, Nancy James secretary[3]
Buck Private and His Girl "snooty" deb[6]
John's Other Wife Roberta Lansing[7]
This Day Is Ours Eleanor MacDonald[8]
Gangbusters various

Film[edit]

Banks began her Hollywood career with small roles in such films as Cry Danger (1951) and Washington Story (1952). She became better known in the 1950s and early 1960s for her many appearances as a supporting actress such as My Pal Gus.[9]

Television[edit]

On March 25, 1958, Banks co-starred with husband Lovejoy in an episode of his Meet McGraw program.[10] In 1972, Banks appeared in the CBS movie Return to Peyton Place.[11]

She made five appearances on Perry Mason, including four roles as the murderer: in 1957 she played Karen Alder in "The Case of the Negligent Nymph;" in 1960 she played Mrs. Joseph Manley in "The Case of the Mythical Monkeys," in 1961 she played Rhonda Houseman in "The Case of the Left-Handed Liar," and in 1964 she played Nellie Conway in "The Case of the Woeful Widower." She also made four appearances on National Velvet, and single appearances on shows like Ford Theatre,[12] Alfred Hitchcock Presents,[1] I Love Lucy, Private Secretary, Date with the Angels, The Rough Riders, The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis, Bewitched, and two appearances on Hazel.

On October 2, 1962, Frank Lovejoy died of a heart attack in bed at the couple's New York residence. At the time, he and Banks were appearing together in a New Jersey stage production of Gore Vidal's play The Best Man,[13] but they had been off the night he was stricken. Banks' career in radio continued after her work in television subsided, and she appeared in 33 episodes of CBS Radio Mystery Theater from 1974 to 1980.

Family[edit]

Banks married fellow actor Frank Lovejoy, whom she met when both had roles on the radio soap opera This Day Is Ours.[1] The couple had two children, Judy and Steve.[14]

Later life[edit]

Joan Banks died in Los Angeles, California in 1998 from lung cancer at the age of 79. She was buried next to her husband in Holy Cross Cemetery in Culver City, California.[15]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c D'Arcy, Jeanne (March 19, 1958). "Role She Enjoys Most Is Being Mrs. Lovejoy". The Logansport Press. p. 4. Retrieved March 23, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication - free to read
  2. ^ a b c "New Cast Members". Harrisburg Telegraph. May 24, 1941. p. 20. Retrieved March 22, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication - free to read
  3. ^ a b "Stars on Parade". The Evening Independent. October 31, 1938. p. 10. Retrieved March 21, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication - free to read
  4. ^ Dunning, John. (1998). On the Air: The Encyclopedia of Old-Time Radio. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-507678-3. P. 472.
  5. ^ "Hopes to Be Singer". The Evening News. January 27, 1941. p. 12. Retrieved March 21, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication - free to read
  6. ^ "Just An Act". The Evening News. July 18, 1941. p. 18. Retrieved March 23, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication - free to read
  7. ^ "Thursday's Highlights" (PDF). Radio and Television Mirror 14 (2): 48. June 1940. Retrieved 1 March 2015. 
  8. ^ Senseney, Dan (September 1940). "What's New from Coast to Coast" (PDF). Radio and Television Mirror 14 (5): 36–37, 72. Retrieved 8 March 2015. 
  9. ^ "My Pal Gus ad". Freeport Journal-Standard. March 17, 1953. p. 9. Retrieved March 23, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication - free to read
  10. ^ "Top Viewing Today". Independent. March 25, 1958. p. 26. Retrieved March 23, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication - free to read
  11. ^ "Small Town Bigotry in 'Return to Peyton Place'". The Odessa American. March 12, 1972. p. 74. Retrieved March 24, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication - free to read
  12. ^ Vernon, Terry (June 28, 1956). "Tele-Vues". Long Beach Independent. p. 44. Retrieved March 23, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication - free to read
  13. ^ Frank Lovejoy at AllMovie
  14. ^ "Easter Sunday". The La Crosse Tribune. March 25, 1958. p. 8. Retrieved March 22, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.  open access publication - free to read
  15. ^ Joan Banks at Find a Grave

External links[edit]