Gloria DeHaven, star of MGM movie musicals, dead at 91

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LAS VEGAS, Neveda — Gloria DeHaven, who starred in a bevy of big-screen musicals during Hollywood’s Golden Age, has died. She was 91.

The actress’ agent told Reuters that she died Saturday in hospice care in Las Vegas, after suffering a stroke a few months ago.

DeHaven, a Los Angeles native born into a showbiz family, made her screen debut as a child in Charlie Chaplin’s 1936 film Modern Timesas Paulette Goddard’s younger sister. She went on to star in numerous musicals in the 1940s and ‘50s, many of them for MGM, including Two Girls and a Sailor (1944) with June Allyson and Van Johnson; Step Lively (1944) with Frank Sinatra (who has his first onscreen kiss with DeHaven); Summer Holiday (1948) with Mickey Rooney; Summer Stock (1950) with Judy Garland and Gene Kelly; andSo This Is Paris (1955) with Tony Curtis.

Later in her career, DeHaven appeared on soap operas like As the World Turns, Ryan’s Hope, and All My Children. Her last film appearance was in 1997’s Out to Sea, with Jack Lemmon, and her last TV role came three years later with a 2000 appearance on Touched by an Angel.

Asked about her long career in a 1984 interview with the Los Angeles Times, DeHaven replied, “As Ingrid Bergman once said ‘There are only two things you need in life to be successful: good health and a bad memory.’”

DeHaven was married four times, including to actor John Payne (Miracle on 34th Street) and twice to businessman Richard Fincher. She is survived by four children.

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