Devon in The Lieutenant (1964)
|Born||Mary L. Briley
May 23, 1931
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
|Died||July 19, 2007
Beverly Hills, California
|Occupation||Actress, singer, model|
Laura Devon was born May 23, 1931 in Chicago. Her birth name has been given as either Mary Lou Briley or Mary Laura Briley. Her father was identified in the press as Merrill Devon, an automotive engineer, and her mother as Velma Prather. She attended school in Chicago and the Grosse Pointe suburbs of Detroit. She entered Wayne State University, majoring in journalism and political science, where she learned how to act in school theater productions.
In 1954, she gave birth to her only child, Kevin, who grew up to become Kevin Jarre, a noted screenwriter. After performing in amateur theatricals and light opera, her first professional part was a lead in a production of The Boy Friend at the Vanguard Playhouse in Detroit.
In 1962, she married Brian Kelly, son of Justice Harry F. Kelly, then a member of the Michigan Supreme Court and a former Michigan governor. Brian Kelly was a fellow actor and, a month after their wedding, he and Devon appeared together on stage in Lillian Hellman's Toys in the Attic at the Laguna Beach Summer Theater. Two years later, he was to become well known for his role as Porter Ricks on the TV series Flipper. They divorced in January 1966.
|“||There was talk about testing me for "High Heels" at the time. I had an agent at MCA who told me U.I. was also interested: he took me there first to test and they signed me to a contract straight off, so I never got to 20th. But for the full year at U.I. I was never put into a picture. I had voice, dancing and acting lessons: Louis Graveure coached me in singing, Charles Conrad in drama, and the studio paid the bills. It was like being totally subsidized and with nothing to do but study.||”|
A 1962 featured role in the TV show Route 66 was her first significant part. Following that, she appeared in many popular TV shows and five Hollywood films. She appeared in an episode of Rawhide entitled "Canliss" as Dean Martin's gunfighter character's wife in 1964.
Laura Devon released only one professional recording, a single: "I Like the Look" (A side) / "Dreamsville" (B side). Both songs were composed by Henry Mancini and were featured in the film Gunn, Devon's last film.
Later life and death
Although Laura Devon's big-screen film career was relatively brief, she had the opportunity to work with some of the most illustrious directors active at that time.
|1964||Goodbye Charlie||Rusty Sartori||Vincente Minnelli|
|1965||Red Line 7000||Julie Kazarian||Howard Hawks|
|1966||Chamber of Horrors||Marie Champlain||Hy Averback|
|1967||A Covenant with Death||Rosemary||Lamont Johnson|
During a seven-year period (1960-1967), Laura Devon had featured roles in numerous popular TV shows, including: Insight, The New Breed, Route 66, The Twilight Zone, Stoney Burke, The Alfred Hitchcock Hour, Rawhide, Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre, The Rogues, Bonanza, I Spy, The Fugitive, T.H.E. Cat, The Big Valley, Coronet Blue, and The Invaders. She had a recurring role on four episodes of Dr. Kildare and she was a member of the repertory cast that rotated major and supporting roles on the critically acclaimed series The Richard Boone Show.
- "The Private Life and Times of Laura Devon". Beauty Lies in the Eyes of the Beholder. Glamour Girls of the Silver Screen. Retrieved 9 July 2012.
- "Laura Devon (I) (1931–2007)". IMDb. Retrieved 9 July 2012.
- "Laura Devon". Find A Grave. FindAGrave.com. Retrieved 9 July 2012.
- Hopper, Hedda (9 August 1964). "Laura Devon, Born With a Silver Spoon, Strikes Gold in Motion Picture Debut". Los Angeles Times: B4–5, 35. Retrieved 9 July 2012. (subscription required (. ))
- "Laura Devon Wins 5-Picture Contract". Calgary Herald, 15 June 1966. Calgary Herald. Retrieved 9 July 2012.
- Nelson, Valerie J. (22 April 2011). "Kevin Jarre dies at 56; screenwriter of 'Glory' and 'Tombstone'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 9 July 2012.
- Heffernan, Harold (29 July 1966). "Don't Call Laura Devon 'Pretty'". Toledo Blade. Retrieved 9 July 2012.
- "Marriage Announcement 3 -- No Title". Chicago Tribune. 13 January 1968.
- "I Like the Look / Dreamsville". Rate Your Music. Retrieved 9 July 2012.
- "Passings; Laura Devon, 76; had a brief TV and film acting career in the 1960s". Los Angeles Times. 27 July 2007.
- "Laura Devon". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved 9 July 2012.
- Terrace, Vincent (2011). Encyclopedia of Television Shows, 1925 through 2010, 2d ed.. Jefferson NC: McFarland. p. 893. ISBN 978-0786464777. Retrieved 28 October 2014.
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