Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Pure Sterling

A name not mentioned nearly enough these days, Jan Sterling was a hothouse hybrid of fire and ice; Claire Trevor's cultured cousin, Grace Kelly's trampy sister. She seemed to be in every other movie made during the 1950's, alternating "class" fare like Johnny Belinda (1948) and Union Pacific (1950) with Female on the Beach (1955), The Female Animal (1957), and High School Confidential (1958) -- co-starring, incidentially, with Stirred, Straight Up with a Twist patron saints Joan Crawford, Hedy Lamarr, and Mamie Van Doren. Is it any wonder that we love her?


  1. My goodness that's a lot of tit for the 50s in that first shot! I doubt too many newspapers ran that one. And we can't forget her Oscar nom for "The High and the Mighty" in which she was good, but basically got the nod for wiping off practically all of her makeup while onscreen.

  2. I wonder if in that Oscar nominated scene did she wipe off her eyebrows too? Makes you wonder if she truly had eyebrows because it looks like all of these are drawn on. Like the first picture where it’s a little too high in a permanent inquisitive mode. She probably had a little box of stick on Colorforms™ eyebrows for different expressions. Like eyebrow wigs.

  3. Poseidon3 -- And she married to the great character actor, Paul Douglas. (Talk about your odd couples!)

    ayem8y -- Yes; she has that perpetually surprised/inquisitive arched look which is usually unique to drag queens and Staten Island gym rats.

  4. LOL I only saw THATM once and I can't recall if her eyebrows bit the dust or not, but I do recall that it was a shocking sight for the era to have someone like her strip off all the artiface. If she had any eyebrows, they had to be very light and thin...


There was an error in this gadget