Muriel Evans

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Muriel Evans
Muriel Evans.jpg
Muriel Evans
Born Muriel Adele Evanson
(1910-07-20)July 20, 1910
Minneapolis, Minnesota, U.S.
Died October 26, 2000(2000-10-26) (aged 90)
Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Cause of death
Colorectal cancer
Nationality American
Education Hollywood High School
Occupation Actress
Years active 1929-1946
Spouse(s) Michael J. P. Cudahy (m. 1929–30)
Marshall R. Worchester (m. 1936–71)

Muriel Evans (July 20, 1910 – October 26, 2000) was an American film actress. She is best known for her many appearances in popular westerns of the 1930s for which she won a Golden Boot Award.

Early life and career[edit]

Muriel Adele Evanson was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota to Norwegian immigrant parents. Her father died when she was only two months old, forcing her mother to move to California to find work, where Evans' mother took a job as a maid at First National Studios. She spent her afternoons on film sets and was soon noticed by a studio executive. The executive introduced her to the director Robert Z. Leonard, who gave her a small role opposite Corinne Griffith in the 1926 film, Mademoiselle Modiste. She continued attending classes at Hollywood High School and landing bit parts in stock theater productions and silent films.[1][dead link]

In 1929, Evans co-starred in the silent, comedic short films, Good Night Nurse and Joyland, starring Lupino Lane. Shortly after completing Joyland, Evans put her acting career on hold to finish school. In July 1929, Evans announced her engagement to Michael J. P. Cudahy, the grandson of Michael Cudahy, one of the founders of the Cudahy Packing Company.[2] They were married on July 7, 1929 in Riverside, California.[3] Evans and Cudahy traveled the world and settled in Paris. In 1930, they returned to the United States and Evans filed for divorce.[4] Their divorce was finalized in October 1930.[5] Evans, who gave up her career upon her marriage, returned to Hollywood, signed a contract at MGM and began making films again.[6]

Muriel Evans with Charley Chase in the 1933 film Nature in the Wrong

In 1932, Evans starred in six films, most notably, Young Ironsides with Charley Chase and Pack Up Your Troubles with Laurel and Hardy. She would go on to star in eight more shorts with Chase before his death in 1940.

Evans' success was due in large part to her pleasant speaking voice. She made a smooth transition from silent pictures to talkies, and throughout the 1930s, Evans continued to work steadily. She appeared in Frank Capra's Mr. Deeds Goes to Town, Manhattan Melodrama with Clark Gable and William Powell, and The Prizefighter and the Lady with Myrna Loy. By the mid-1930s, Evans also began co-starring in popular westerns alongside Tom Mix, John Wayne and Tex Ritter. She also starred in three Hopalong Cassidy films opposite William Boyd, and did seven westerns with Buck Jones.[7]

Later years[edit]

Muriel Evans with James Ellison in the 1936 film Three on the Trail

In 1936, Evans married a theatrical agent, Marshall R. Worchester. By age 30, she retired from acting. One of her last film appearances came in 1946, in the Pete Smith short, Studio Visit. Soon after retiring, Evans and her husband settled in Washington, D.C. Over the next decade, she starred in four radio shows and in the television show Hollywood Reporter. In 1951, the couple moved back to Hollywood, although Evans never resumed her acting career. Eventually, the couple bought property in Tarzana, California, where Evans dabbled in real estate.[1]

After the death of her husband in 1971, Evans began work as a volunteer nurse at the Motion Picture and Television Country House and Hospital in Woodland Hills not far from her home. After a stroke in 1994, she became a resident within the complex and often dined with fellow actors with whom she had once worked, including Anita Garvin. In 1999, Evans made her last film appearance in a 2000 documentary, I Used to Be in Pictures, in which she was one of many former actors who recalled their experiences in the film work.[1]

Death[edit]

On October 26, 2000, Muriel Evans died of colon cancer at the Motion Picture and Television Country House and Hospital in Woodland Hills, California. She was 90 years old.[8]

Filmography[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1928 Wife Trouble Short film
1929 Good Night Nurse Short film
1929 Joyland Short film
1932 Young Ironsides Muriel Evans Short film
1932 Pack Up Your Troubles Wrong Eddie's bride
1932 Hot Spot Short film
1932 Girl Grief Short film
1932 Now We'll Tell One Muriel Evans Short film
1932 Mr. Bride Short film
1933 Fallen Arches Muriel Gilbert Short film
1933 Fast Workers' Nurse
1933 Nature In the Wrong Muriel Short film
Alternative title: Tarzan In the Wrong
1933 His Silent Racket Muriel Short film
1933 Arabian Tights Miss Evans Short film
1933 Thundering Taxis Mrs. Blacker Short film
1933 Broadway to Hollywood Maid Uncredited
Alternative title: Ring Up the Curtain
1933 The Prizefighter and the Lady Linda Alternative title: Every Woman's Man
1933 Dancing Lady Chorus Girl Uncredited
1933 The Women in His Life Molly
1933 Queen Christina Barmaid at Inn Uncredited
1934 Heat Lightning Blonde Cutie
1934 Manhattan Melodrama Tootsie Malone
1934 The Big Idea Honey, Ted's Fiancee Short film
1934 Hollywood Party Show Girl Uncredited
1934 Attention Suckers Demonstration Watcher Short film
1934 Hide-Out Baby
1934 Have a Heart Helen, Schauber's Secretary
1935 The Roaring West Mary Parker
1935 The Throwback Muriel Fergus
1935 The New Frontier Hanna Lewis
1935 Nurse to You! Muriel Chase Short film
1936 Silver Spurs Janet Allison Alternative title: Silverspurs
1936 Call of the Prairie Linda McHenry
1936 King of the Pecos Belle Jackson
1936 Mr. Deeds Goes to Town Theresa Uncredited
1936 Three on the Trail Mary Stevens
1936 Two-Fisted Gentleman June Prentice
1936 Missing Girls Dorothy Benson Alternative title: When Girls Leave Home
1936 House of Secrets Julie Kenmore
1936 Under Your Spell Governess Uncredited
1936 The Boss Rider of Gun Creek Starr Landerson
1936 Ten Laps to Go Norma Corbett Alternative title: King of the Speedway
1936 Don't Be Like That The Faithful Wife Short film
1937 Rich Relations Trixie Lane
1937 Headline Crasher Edith Arlen
1937 Smoke Tree Range Nan Page
1937 Rustlers' Valley Agnes Randall
1937 Law for Tombstone Nellie Gray
1937 Boss of Lonely Valley Retta Lowrey
1939 Dog-Gone Miriam Jones Short film
1939 Home Boner Mrs. Errol Short film
1939 The Rookie Cop Fern, Joey's Girl Alternative title: Swift Vengeance
1939 Chicken Feed Girlfriend Short film
1939 Westbound Stage Joan Hale
1940 Roll, Wagons, Roll Ruth Benson Alternative title: Roll Covered Wagon

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Mutti-Mews, Howard (2000-11-08). "Obituary: Muriel Evans". The Independent. Retrieved 2007-08-18. 
  2. ^ "WEALTHY YOUTH PLANS TO WED MURIEL EVANS". The Miami News. 1929-07-03. pp. J–4. Retrieved 10 December 2012. 
  3. ^ "CUDAHY MARRIES ACTRESS". The Los Angeles Times. 1929-07-29. p. A6. 
  4. ^ "Cudahy Makes Up With Film Actress Wife". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. 1930-12-19. p. 4. Retrieved 10 December 2012. 
  5. ^ "WINS DIVORCE FROM YOUNG CUDAHY". The Southeast Missourian. 1930-10-31. p. 6. Retrieved 10 December 2012. 
  6. ^ "Muriel Evans Starts Film Career Anew". The Milwaukee Sentinel. 1933-11-24. p. 17. Retrieved 10 December 2012. 
  7. ^ The Heroines: Muriel Evans
  8. ^ Oliver, Myrna (2000-10-30). "Muriel Evans, film actress, died at 90". Star-News. pp. 4–B. Retrieved 10 December 2012. 

External links[edit]