Born Gloria Hallward in Los Angeles on November 28, 1923, Gloria Grahame aspired to be an actress while still a child. Her ambition was encouraged by her mother, who worked as an acting coach. Leaving school for the stage, Grahame's talent and beauty took her all the way to Broadway. While acting onstage, she was spotted by an MGM talent scout, and soon she signed a long-term contract with the studio, leaving New York to return to Los Angeles. From the late 1940s through the 1950s, Grahame was a familiar fixture in film noir crime dramas, including Sudden Fear (1952; with Joan Crawford and Jack Palance) and Naked Alibi (1954).

Gloria GrahameGloria GrahameGloria GrahameGloria Grahame

LEFT: RKO still. CENTER: Mid 1940s MGM photo. RIGHT: Late 1940s RKO stills

Although Gloria Grahame was a talented and accomplished stage and screen actress, her acting career was often overshadowed by her somewhat scandalous private life. Married four times, her husbands included actor Stanley Clements, director Nicholas Ray, and writer Cy Howard; she had a daughter with Howard and a son with Ray. In 1960, Grahame's fourth marriage made headlines; she married her former stepson, producer/director Anthony Ray. This union produced two sons, born in the early 1960s.

the films of gloria grahame

A Woman's Secret (1949)

Gloria GrahameGloria Grahame

From the RKO film noir release A Woman's Secret, directed by Nicholas Ray. LEFT: Grahame as singer Susan Caldwell. RIGHT: With Melvyn Douglas and Maureen O'Hara

Macao (1952)

Gloria Grahame and Robert Mitchum

With Robert Mitchum in RKO's film noir adventure Macao

Sudden Fear (1952)

Jack Palance and Gloria Grahame

With Jack Palance in the Joan Crawford noir vehicle Sudden Fear, released by RKO

The Big Heat (1953)

Glenn Ford and Gloria Grahame

With Glenn Ford in Fritz Lang's The Big Heat, released by Columbia

Prisoners of the Casbah (1953)

Gloria GrahameGloria GrahameTurhan Bey, Gloria Grahame, and Cesar Romero

From Columbia's low-budget adventure flick Prisoners of the Casbah. The right photo includes Turhan Bey and Cesar Romero

The Good Die Young (1954)

Gloria Grahame and John Ireland

With John Ireland in the film noir thriller The Good Die Young

Human Desire (1954)

Broderick Crawford, Gloria Grahame, and Glenn Ford

With Broderick Crawford and Glenn Ford in Columbia's Human Desire

Naked Alibi (1954)

Sterling Hayden and Gloria Grahame

From Universal-International's terrific film noir thriller Naked Alibi with Sterling Hayden

The Cobweb (1955)

Gloria Grahame and Richard Widmark

With Richard Widmark in the offbeat MGM drama The Cobweb

Oklahoma! (1955)

Shirley Jones and Gloria Grahame

With Shirley Jones in the RKO musical Oklahoma!

The Man Who Never Was (1956)

Gloria Grahame and William Russell

With William Russell in the 20th Century Fox war drama The Man Who Never Was

Blood and Lace (1971)

Gloria Grahame

Grahame as Mrs. Deere in the low-budget American International shocker Blood and Lace

later years

Along with the demise of film noir as a film genre in the late 1950s, the early 1960s scandal surrounding her fourth marriage damaged Grahame's acting career. Retreating to the stage and doing TV guest appearances, she waited until the early 1970s to make her comeback in a series of mostly low-budget films. Sadly, she succumbed to breast cancer on October 5, 1981, at the age of 57. She was survived by her mother and her four children.

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The Nesting (1981) with John Carradine
Melvin and Howard (1980) with Jason Robards and Paul Le Mat
Chilly Scenes of Winter (1979) with Mary Beth Hurt and John Heard
A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square (1979) with David Niven and Elke Sommer
The Dancing Princesses (1978) with Jim Dale
Mansion of the Doomed (1977) with Richard Basehart and Vic Tayback
Mama's Dirty Girls (1974) with Candice Rialson
The Girl on the Late, Late Show (1974) with Yvonne De Carlo, Cameron Mitchell, Don Murray, Bert Convy, John Ireland, Ralph Meeker, and Van Johnson
Autopsy (1973) with Fernando Rey and Sue Lyon
The Loners (1972) with Scott Brady, Dean Stockwell, Tim Rooney, and Hortense Petra
Blood and Lace (1971) with Melody Patterson and Vic Tayback
The Todd Killings (1971) with Richard Thomas, Barbara Bel Geddes, Fay Spain, and Eve Brent
Chandler (1971) with Warren Oates and Leslie Caron
Black Noon (1971) with Roy Thinnes, Ray Milland, and Yvette Mimieux
Escape (1971) with Christopher George, William Windom, Huntz Hall, and John Vernon
Ride Beyond Vengeance (1966) with Chuck Connors, Michael Rennie, Claude Akins, Joan Blondell, Gary Merrill, and Bill Bixby
Odds Against Tomorrow (1959) with Harry Belafonte, Shelley Winters, and Robert Ryan
Ride Out for Revenge (1957) with Rory Calhoun, Vince Edwards, and Lloyd Bridges
The Man Who Never Was (1956) with Clifton Webb and Stephen Boyd
Oklahoma! (1955) with Shirley Jones, Gordon MacRae, and Gene Nelson
Not as a Stranger (1955) with Robert Mitchum, Olivia de Havilland, Frank Sinatra, Lon Chaney Jr., Broderick Crawford, and Whit Bissell
The Cobweb (1955) with Lauren Bacall, Richard Widmark, Adele Jergens, Charles Boyer, Lillian Gish, and Fay Wray
The Good Die Young (1954) with Laurence Harvey, Richard Basehart, John Ireland, and Joan Collins
Naked Alibi (1954) with Sterling Hayden, Gene Barry, Max Showalter, Chuck Connors, and Marcia Henderson
Human Desire (1954) with Glenn Ford and Broderick Crawford
Prisoners of the Casbah (1953) with Turhan Bey, Cesar Romero, and Nestor Paiva
The Big Heat (1953) with Glenn Ford, Lee Marvin, and Carolyn Jones
Man on a Tightrope (1953) with Fredric March, Terry Moore, Alexander D'Arcy, Cameron Mitchell, and Richard Boone
The Glass Wall (1953) with Vittorio Gassman and Ann Robinson
The Bad and the Beautiful (1952) with Lana Turner, Kirk Douglas, Gilbert Roland, Dick Powell, Elaine Stewart, Barry Sullivan, and Leo G. Carroll
Sudden Fear (1952) with Joan Crawford, Jack Palance, Bruce Bennett, and Mike Connors
Macao (1952) with Jane Russell, Robert Mitchum, and William Bendix
The Greatest Show on Earth (1952) with Cornel Wilde, Betty Hutton, Charlton Heston, and Dorothy Lamour
In a Lonely Place (1950) with Humphrey Bogart, Jeff Donnell, and Morris Ankrum
Roughshod (1949) with Robert Sterling, Martha Hyer, John Ireland, and Jeff Donnell
A Woman's Secret (1949) with Maureen O'Hara, Melvyn Douglas, and Bill Williams
It Happened in Brooklyn (1947) with Frank Sinatra, Kathryn Grayson, and Peter Lawford
Merton of the Movies (1947) with Red Skelton, Virginia O'Brien, and Hugo Haas
Song of the Thin Man (1947) with William Powell, Myrna Loy, Keenan Wynn, and Jayne Meadows
Crossfire (1947) with Robert Mitchum, Robert Young, Robert Ryan, Lex Barker, and Steve Brodie
It's a Wonderful Life (1946) with James Stewart and Donna Reed
Without Love (1945) with Spencer Tracy, Katharine Hepburn, Lucille Ball, and Keenan Wynn
Blonde Fever (1944) with Mary Astor and Marshall Thompson

Seventh Avenue, 1977 NBC miniseries. Grahame portrayed Moll
Rich Man, Poor Man, 1976 ABC miniseries. Grahame portrayed Sue Prescott

Tales of the Unexpected, episode Depart in Peace, originally aired May 3, 1980
Kojak, episode Sister Maria, originally aired March 15, 1977
Mannix, episode Duet for Three, originally aired December 19, 1970
The Name of the Game, episode The Takeover, originally aired January 23, 1970
Daniel Boone, episode Perilous Passage, originally aired January 15, 1970
Then Came Bronson, episode The 3:13 Arrives at Noon, originally aired October 29, 1969
Iron Horse, episode Appointment with an Epitaph, originally aired February 13, 1967
Burke's Law, episode Who Killed the Rabbit's Husband?, originally aired April 14, 1965
The Fugitive, episode The Homecoming, originally aired April 7, 1964
The Outer Limits, episode The Guests, originally aired March 23, 1964
Grindl, episode Dial G for Grindl, originally aired February 9, 1964
Burke's Law, episode Who Killed April?, originally aired January 31, 1964
Sam Benedict, episode Too Many Strangers, originally aired December 8, 1962
The New Breed, episode Blood Money, originally aired December 19, 1961
Harrigan and Son, episode My Fair Lawyer, originally aired January 27, 1961
G.E. True Theater, episode Don't Let It Throw You, originally aired January 1, 1961

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Watch Gloria Grahame's 1954 noir thriller Naked Alibi
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