Evelyn Ankers pin-up from Yank, The Army Weekly, July 1945
|Born||Evelyn Felisa Ankers
August 17, 1918
|Died||August 29, 1985
Maui, Hawaii, U.S.
|Cause of death||Ovarian cancer|
|Resting place||Maui Veterans Cemetery, Makawao, Hawaii|
|Spouse(s)||Richard Denning (m. 1942–85) (her death)|
|Children||Diana Denning Dwyer|
Evelyn Felisa Ankers (August 17, 1918 – August 29, 1985) was a British-American actress born in Valparaiso, Chile. She often played variations on the role of the cultured young leading lady in many American horror films during the 1940s, most notably The Wolf Man (1941) opposite Lon Chaney, Jr., a frequent screen partner. She was relatively tall, standing 5' 6 1/2" without heels.
Known as "the Queen of the Bs", Ankers' other films include The Ghost of Frankenstein (1942), Captive Wild Woman (1943), Son of Dracula (1943), The Mad Ghoul (1943), Jungle Woman (1944), Weird Woman (1944), The Invisible Man's Revenge (1944), and The Frozen Ghost (1945). She appeared in Hold That Ghost (1941), Sherlock Holmes and the Voice of Terror (1942), His Butler's Sister (1943), The Pearl of Death (1944), Pardon My Rhythm (1944), Tarzan's Magic Fountain (1949), and played Calamity Jane in The Texan Meets Calamity Jane (1950), one of many movies for which she received top billing.
Ankers made over fifty films between 1936 and 1950, then retired from movies at the age of 32 to be a housewife. She occasionally played television roles, such as that of saloon owner Robbie James in the 1958 episode "Gambler" of the ABC/Warner Brothers western series Cheyenne, with Clint Walker in the title role. She returned ten years later to make one more film, No Greater Love (1960), with her husband Richard Denning.
- Land Without Music (1936)
- Rembrandt (1936)
- Wings of the Morning (1937)
- Fire Over England (1937)
- Knight Without Armour (1937)
- The Villiers Diamond (1938)
- Second Thoughts (1938)
- Murder in the Family (1938)
- Coming of Age (1938)
- The Claydon Treasure Mystery (1938)
- Burma Convoy (1941)
- The Wolf Man (1941) with Lon Chaney, Jr. and Bela Lugosi
- Hold That Ghost (1941) with Abbott and Costello
- North to the Klondike (1942) with Broderick Crawford and Lon Chaney, Jr.
- The Ghost of Frankenstein (1942) with Lon Chaney, Jr. and Bela Lugosi
- Eagle Squadron (1942) with Robert Stack and Diana Barrymore
- Pierre of the Plains (1942)
- Sherlock Holmes and the Voice of Terror (1942) with Basil Rathbone
- The Great Impersonation (1942)
- His Butler's Sister (1943) directed by Frank Borzage
- The Mad Ghoul (1943) with Robert Armstrong
- Son of Dracula (1943) with Lon Chaney, Jr.
- Captive Wild Woman (1943)
- Jungle Woman (1944)
- Weird Woman (1944)
- The Invisible Man's Revenge (1944) with John Carradine
- Ladies Courageous (1944) with Loretta Young and Diana Barrymore
- The Pearl of Death (1944) with Basil Rathbone and Rondo Hatton
- Bowery to Broadway (1944)
- The Frozen Ghost (1945) with Lon Chaney, Jr.
- The Fatal Witness (1945)
- The French Key (1945)
- Queen of Burlesque (1946)
- Black Beauty (1946) with Richard Denning
- Flight to Nowhere (1946)
- Spoilers of the North (1947)
- Last of the Redskins (1947)
- The Lone Wolf in London (1947) with Gerald Mohr and Eric Blore
- Parole, Inc. (1948) with Michael O'Shea and Turhan Bey
- Tarzan's Magic Fountain (1949) with Lex Barker
- The Texan Meets Calamity Jane (1950)
- No Greater Love (1960) with Richard Denning
- Evelyn Ankers obituary, nytimes.com, August 31, 1985; accessed June 20, 2016.
- Actress Evelyn Ankers, 67, Former `Queen` Of B Movies, 31 August 1985, Chicago Tribune; retrieved August 16, 2016.
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