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Vanessa Brown
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Birth: Mar. 24, 1928
Vienna
Vienna (Wien), Austria
Death: May 21, 1999
Woodland Hills
Los Angeles County
California, USA


Actress. She was a successful performer whose more than 30-year career spanned radio, theater, film, and television. Born Smylla Brynd to Jewish parents, her family fled Austria to Paris, France in 1937 to escape Nazi persecution and a few years later, she immigrated to the US with her family. Her first exposure to acting was at the age of 13 when she auditioned for dramatist and screenwriter Lillian Hellman for a role in the 1941 play "Watch on the Rhine." Fluent in German, French, Italian, and English, she impressed Hellman with her presence and authentic Teutonic accent, and was signed as understudy to actress and singer Ann Blyth, eventually doing the role of 'Babette' on Broadway and in the touring production. While in high school, she wrote and directed school plays. She then attended the University of California, Los Angeles and graduated in 1949 with a Bachelor's Degree in English. Her IQ of 165 led to two years of work as one of the young panelists on the radio series "Quiz Kids," and she also served as a junior member of the National Board of Review, the critical panel serving the motion picture industry. RKO Radio Pictures then brought her family to Los Angeles, California and she made her film debut (as Tessa Brind) in "Youth Runs Wild" (1944). RKO then changed her screen name to Vanessa Brown and assigned her to a series of ingenue roles over the next few years. In the late 1940s she was featured in "The Late George Apley" (1947), "The Ghost and Mrs. Muir' (1947), "Big Jack" (1949), "The Secret of St. Ives" (1949) and "The Heiress" (1949). She was the 8th actress to play the role of 'Jane', appearing in "Tarzan and the Slave Girl" (1950, opposite Lex Barker), followed by "Three Husbands" (1951), "The Basketball Fix" (1951), and a role in Vincente Minnelli's acclaimed "The Bad and the Beautiful" (1952). In the early 1950s she acted in live television dramas, including "Robert Montgomery Presents" and "The Philco Television Playhouse," and appeared on the television game show "Pantomime Quiz" and talk show "Leave It to the Girls." On Broadway, she originated the role of 'The Girl' in "The Seven Year Itch" (1952, opposite Tom Ewell), the character portrayed by Marilyn Monroe in the 1955 film version. She continued to contribute to television through the 1950s, and was one of the narrators of the United World Federalists documentary "Eight Steps to Peace" (1957), along with actors Vincent Price and Robert Ryan. She later made appearances in the television series "The Wonder Years" and "Murder, She Wrote." Her final film appearance was in the 1976 horror film "The Witch Who Came From the Sea." In 1988 she was diagnosed with breast cancer and the following year her home was destroyed in an earthquake. Although the surgery for her cancer was successful, the disease returned in a few years and she died in the Motion Picture Country Home at the age of 71. She was twice married, first to plastic surgeon Dr. Robert Alan Franklin (1950 to 1957) and then to Mark Sandrich, Jr, (1959 to 1989). She has two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, one for her contribution to films and the other for television. (bio by: William Bjornstad) 
 
Family links: 
 Spouse:
  Mark Sandrich (1928 - 1995)
 
Burial:
Westwood Memorial Park
Los Angeles
Los Angeles County
California, USA
Plot: Garden of Roses
 
Created by: K
Record added: Sep 29, 2009
Find A Grave Memorial# 42517551
Vanessa Brown
Added by: Alberto Blanco
 
Vanessa Brown
Added by: K
 
Vanessa Brown
Added by: A.J. Marik
 
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- R I P
 Added: Oct. 14, 2016

- LeeAnne Peterson
 Added: Jul. 31, 2016
Birthday Blessings
- Stasia K
 Added: Mar. 24, 2016
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