14 May 1918|
Teddington, Middlesex, England, United Kingdom
|Died||30 October 1984
London, England, United Kingdom
|Years active||1936–1948, 1961|
|Spouse(s)||Frederick Guy Beauchamp (1935–1942) (divorced)
George M. Moffett, Jr. (1948–1965) (divorced) 2 children
June Ada Rose Duprez (14 May 1918 – 30 October 1984) was an English film actress.
The daughter of American vaudeville performer Fred Duprez and Australian Florence Isabelle Matthews, she was born in Teddington, Middlesex, England, during an air raid in the final months of World War I.
She began acting in her teens with the Coventry repertory company after studying at the Froebel Institute, and was a film extra in 1935 before appearing in The Crimson Circle the following year. Her next film was The Cardinal (1936), and she had a small role in The Spy in Black (1939), but it was her fourth film, the epic London Films adaptation of A. E. W. Mason's The Four Feathers (1939), that made her a film star, acting opposite John Clements, Ralph Richardson, and C. Aubrey Smith. Her peak of success came with the landmark fantasy film The Thief of Bagdad (1940), which she also made for Alexander Korda's London Films (on locations in the United Kingdom, northern Africa, and the Grand Canyon in Arizona).
Korda took charge of her career after this point and brought her to Hollywood where he set her asking price at $50,000 per film. However, as Duprez had not yet achieved the level of popularity in America that she had in Britain, this tactic only served to place her out of contention for most roles. When she was finally released from Korda's contract she appeared in such low budget fare as They Raid by Night (1942), Little Tokyo, U.S.A. (1942), and Tiger Fangs (1943). Clifford Odets' grim None But the Lonely Heart (1944), in which she co-starred with Cary Grant and Ethel Barrymore, commenced a brief return to films of higher production values. Duprez performed well amid a top ensemble cast in René Clair's film version of Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None (1945). That same year she appeared opposite John Loder in The Brighton Strangler. In the film noir Calcutta (1947) she starred with Alan Ladd, Gail Russell, and William Bendix.
After a few more motion pictures, Duprez moved to New York City for a brief career on and off Broadway. She appeared in "The Last Tycoon," an episode of the Robert Montgomery Presents television show in 1951, and her final credited film performance was in One Plus One (1961), also titled Exploring the Kinsey Reports.
On 10 September 1944, Duprez starred in "Forever Walking Free," an episode of Silver Theater on CBS radio. She also starred in the June 20, 1946 episode of Suspense, titled "Your Devoted Wife," also on CBS radio.
Personal life and death
She married her first husband Frederick Beauchamp, a wealthy Harley Street doctor, in 1935, but they divorced in 1942 when his jealousy of her film stardom had eroded their marriage. She married for a second time in October 1948 to George Moffett, Jr., a wealthy sportsman. They had two daughters, but ended in divorce in 1965.
Duprez lived in Rome, Italy, for several years, then returned to London to live out the remainder of her life in a flat in the affluent Knightsbridge area, having a close relationship with an English nobleman. She died there, after a long period of illness on 30 October 1984 at age 66.
- The Amateur Gentleman (1936)
- The Crimson Circle (1936)
- The Cardinal (1936)
- The Four Feathers (1939)
- The Lion Has Wings (1939)
- The Spy in Black (1939)
- The Thief of Bagdad (1940)
- They Raid by Night (1942)
- East of Chinatown (1942)
- Forever and a Day (1943)
- Don Winslow of the Coast Guard (1943)
- Tiger Fangs (1943)
- None but the Lonely Heart (1944)
- And Then There Were None (1945)
- The Brighton Strangler (1945)
- That Brennan Girl (1946)
- Calcutta (1947)
- One Plus One (1961)