Jane Withers turns child actor into a commercial star, dies at age 95

Wizards was also known as “Josephine the Plumper” in television commercials in the 1960s and 70s.

The daughter said Jane Wizards, a former child actor who starred in a series of B-movies that plagued Shirley Temple on the screen and earned box office, died. She was 95 years old.

Wizards, also known as “Josephine the Plumper” in 1960s and 70s television commercials, died on Saturday, her daughter Kendall Elea said. Wizards was one of the last remaining stars of the 1930s and 1940s and was the dominant Hollywood studio.

After a series of minor roles as a child actor, Wizards was cast by 20th Century Fox in 1934’s “Bright Eyes” as the nemesis of the adorable temple, then Hollywood’s most popular star.

“I had to play the most sneaky and eerie girl God had put on this planet,” Wizards recalled in 2000. And I thought, “Oh, I was so creepy to Shirley Temple that everyone would hate me forever!” “

It didn’t happen that way. Critics claimed she stole the photo from Shirley. The children wrote a fan letter praising what she did for Shirley. “Because she is so perfect.”

Fox boss Darryl F. Zanack signed the deal, believing there was room for another child actor in the studio. She played Anti-Shirley, a bright, talkative, naughty girl with wide eyes, chubby cheeks, and straight black hair, as opposed to Shirley’s blonde curly top.

For four years, Fox produced three to four Wizards films each year on a much lower budget than Temple Specials. Titles include “Ginger,” “Paddy O’Day,” “Little Miss Nobody,” “Wild and Wooly,” and “Arizona Wildcat.”

While B-movies targeted the lower half of the double-barrel, the theater owners named Wizards one of the top money-making stars in 1936 and 1937.

The Temple movie was made on Fox’s modern Westwood grounds, but Wizards made her in an old studio at Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood.

“Until Shirley left the studio, I wasn’t allowed to shoot in Westwood,” she said.

Wizards proved that there were few draws as a teenager, and her career declined.

As an adult, she has appeared in several movies and television.

Her greatest attention came from drawing “Josephine” on a comet cleanser television commercial for 12 years.

“Oh, money is good, it’s okay,” she told the Los Angeles Times in 1963.

According to her, the main advantage is that the work did not interfere with her family life in Hollywood, unlike the Broadway offer she was getting.

In a later Times interview, she felt that the original Josephine character was “too smart and too cheeky,” but “any woman who wants to be a plumber” takes pride in her work. He said he thought he would care for his customers. ..

Jane Wizards’ fame began early. Born April 12, 1926 in Atlanta, she appeared on local radio as Dixie’s pretty Dewdrop by the age of three.

Her mother had greater ambition, and she persuaded her husband to move her family to Hollywood.

Jane played a small role in the film and spoke to Willie Hopper and Looney Tunes comics.

Her experience at WC Fields in “It’s a Gift” (1934) believes in the legend that comedians hated children (encouraged by Fields himself). Fields chose her for a scene where she was skeletonizing in front of the store and annoying his exit. He coached her and then praised her professionalism.

When she won her first protagonist, he sent her two big bouquets and a note saying, “You’re going to beat them with’Ginger’and you’ll have a great career.” rice field.

Her popularity led to Jane Wizards dolls and other merchandise. At her peak, she received $ 2,500 a week and $ 50,000 a year nominations. Unlike other kid stars, her income didn’t go away.

She explained in 1974: “Fortunately, my dad loved the land in California very much. He got his hands on real estate in a great way.”

I started collecting dolls and teddy bears from an early age and continued my life. In 1988, she reported that she owned 12,000 dolls and 2,500 teddy bears, boxed and boxed in a 27,000-square-foot warehouse.

Wizards’ adult film appearances were sporadic for three marriages and five children. Her most notable credits were “Giants” (1956) and “Captain Newman, MD” (1963).

In 1947, Wizards left Hollywood to live with his first husband, producer Oilman William Moss, in Midland, Texas. The marriage gave birth to three children and ended seven years later.

She returned to Hollywood and was paralyzed with arthritis. She recovered after spending five months in the hospital.

She had a second husband, Kenneth Elea, who was one of four freshman singing groups who died in 1968, and two more children. In 1985 she married a travel agency executive, Thomas Pearson.

An interviewer in 1974 asked Wizards how he escaped from the problems that plagued many child stars in adulthood. A lifelong Presbyterian church, she commented:

The late AP entertainment writer Bob Thomas contributed a biographical material to the story.

Jane Withers turns child actor into a commercial star, dies at age 95

Source link Jane Withers turns child actor into a commercial star, dies at age 95

Back to top button