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"In the Spotlight"

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Anderson (front & center) as Minx Lockridge on the soap "Santa Barbara"

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Anderson as the Vulcan High Priestess in

"Star Trek III: The Search for Spock"

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In the Spotlight: WENDELL COREY

 

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The dependable, somber actor was born Wendell Reid Corey March 20, 1914 in Dracut, Massachusetts, the son of Milton Rothwell Corey, a Congregationalist clergyman.

 

Corey was educated in Springfield and in 1934 made his amateur stage debut with the Springfield Repertory Players in "Street Scene".

He Worked in a department store as a washing machine salesman before starting a stage career, doing a number of productions in summer stock. While appearing with a Works Progress Administration theatre company in the late 1930s, he met his future wife, Alice Wiley.

 

His Broadway debut was in "Comes the Revelation" in 1942. After appearing in a number of supporting roles, he scored his first hit as a cynical newspaperman in Elmer Rice's comedy "Dream Girl" in 1945 winning a Theatre World Award. While appearing in the play, Corey was seen by producer Hal Wallis, who persuaded him to sign a contract with Paramount and pursue a motion picture career in Hollywood.

 

His movie debut was playing a gangster in "Desert Fury" in 1947 starring John Hodiak, Lizabeth Scott, and Mary Astor. Corey appeared in "Sorry, Wrong Number" in 1948 starring Barbara Stanwyck and Burt Lancaster, and a year later as Janet Leigh's fianc? in the Robert Mitchum romantic comedy "Holiday Affair".

He starred opposite Stanwyck in "The File on Thelma Jordon", and opposite Joan Crawford in "Harriet Craig".

His other movies include, "The Search" with Montgomery Clift, "Man-Eater of Kumaon", "The Accused" with Loretta Young, "Any Number Can Play", "No sad Songs for Me", "The Furies", "The Wild Blue Yonder", "Carbine Williams", "Hell's Half Acre", Hitchcock's "Rear Window" starring James Stewart and Grace Kelly, "The Big Knife" with Jack Palance, Ida Lupino and Shelley Winters, "The Rainmaker" starring Burt Lancaster and Katharine Hepburn and "Loving You" starring Elvis Presley and Lizabeth Scott.

 

Corey and Wiley had one son and three daughters, Jonathan, Jennifer, Bonnie Alice, and Robin.

 

He starred in the weekly television programs "Harbor Command" and "The Eleventh Hour", and made guest star appearances on a number of popular shows, including "Alfred Hitchcock Presents", "The Untouchables", "Burke's Law", "Perry Mason", "The Wild Wild West" etc.

 

Corey served as president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences from 1961 to 1963 and was a member of the board of directors of the Screen Actors Guild.

A Republican campaigner in national politics since 1956, Corey was elected to the Santa Monica City Council in April 1965. The conservative politician ran for the California seat in the United States Congress in 1966, but lost the primary election.

 

He died November 8, 1968 at age fifty-four at the Motion Picture & Television Hospital in Woodland Hills, California, of cirrhosis of the liver as a result of alcoholism. He was still a councilman at the time of his death.

He is interred in Washington Cemetery, Washington, Massachusetts.

 

Wendell Corey has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his work in TV.

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Corey (top) with John Hodiak, Lizabeth Scott & Burt Lancaster in "Desert Fury" (1947)

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Hi Mongo, Thanks for shining the light on one of my favorite character actors, Wendell Corey. Maybe some movie fans found Wendell wooden or playing the same type of role, but not me. Wendell played the bookeeper caught in the middle in the nifty film noir "I Walk Alone".As a police detective, he doggedly pursed Loretta Young in "The Accused". I can still remember the line in "The Furies" when Barbara Stanwyck asks Wendell if he would like to slap her face. Sure enough Barbara gets what she was asking for. "Loving You" was Elvis Presley`s second movie, one of his best. Wendell played Tex the leader of country western singing group. The band is going nowhere until Tex`s wife Lizbeth Scott recruits Elvis to be the lead singer. In the past few months, Isaw the premiers of "The File On Thelma Jordan" and "No Sad Songs For Me". Wendell was a cheating husband in the first, and a loving husband in the second.Finally I am sorry that Mr. Corey died so young. Maybe he didn`t have self confidence or the acting roles were harder to find. Needless to say, Wendell left an impression on me.

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Cashette, no doubt that the smooth Wendell Corey was a dependable character actor. He was fortunate to have co-starred in some quality films, not to mention his lovely leading ladies.

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Hiya Mongo! Thanks for spotlighting Mr Corey. I always thought he was a good "solid" actor and had a nice voice. I liked him in Rear Window, his scenes with Jimmy Stewart are terrific and funny.

 

I knew next to nothing about him personally, but I have to say everything you wrote sounds just about what I would imagine. He really was what he seemed to be to me. :D

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Thank you, Miss G. for your input. Glad that you enjoyed Corey's profile.

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Corey with Natalie Wood & Margaret Sullavan in "No Sad Songs for Me" (1950)

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Corey, Macdonald Carey, Bruce Bennett & Bill Williams in "The Great Missouri Raid"

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Corey (right) at Paramount studios with Gloria Swanson and Bob Hope

 

Message was edited by: mongo

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