The most important thing is to enjoy your life - to be happy - it's all that matters.
- Audrey Hepburn

Jan Sterling - "In the Spotlight"

Discussion of the actors, directors and film-makers who 'made it all happen'

Moderators: moira finnie, Lzcutter, Sue Sue Applegate, movieman1957

Vecchiolarry
Posts: 1395
Joined: May 6th, 2007, 10:15 pm
Location: Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Jan Sterling - "In the Spotlight"

Postby Vecchiolarry » June 21st, 2007, 10:48 am

Hi Joe,

Thanks for featuring Jan Sterling on TCM's "In the Spotlight"...

I cannot login on that board anymore???? I guess I've been banned.....
So, I am appreciating your endeavours over here...

A coincidence:
Your busty picture of the blonde Jan comes on the birthday of the busty brunette, Jane Russell. I've heard that they were friends and once made an entrance together at a party a la Monroe & Russell. I'm told it was a spectacular sight and many a gentlemen's eyes had to be popped back in!!

I was also told that Miss Russell helped care for Jan near the end. True friendship and real charity.
Don't let me ever hear a bad word about Jane Russell....

Thanks for Jan. Always a standout in her movies.
I hope her nylons aren't bagging at the knees up there!!!!!!

Larry

User avatar
Sue Sue Applegate
Administrator
Posts: 3322
Joined: April 14th, 2007, 8:47 pm
Location: Texas

Jane

Postby Sue Sue Applegate » June 22nd, 2007, 1:48 pm

Dear Larry,
I'm a Jane Russell fan, too!
Blog: http://suesueapplegate.wordpress.com/
Twitter:@suesueapplegate
TCM Message Boards: http://forums.tcm.com/index.php?/topic/ ... ue-sue-ii/
Sue Sue : https://www.facebook.com/groups/611323215621862/
Thelma Ritter: Hollywood's Favorite New Yorker, University Press of Mississippi-2020
Avatar: Ginger Rogers, The Major and The Minor

User avatar
moira finnie
Administrator
Posts: 8176
Joined: April 9th, 2007, 6:34 pm
Location: Earth
Contact:

Postby moira finnie » June 22nd, 2007, 4:08 pm

Larry, I'm sorry to hear that you've had problems logging in on TCM. I hope that you weren't banned, just lost in a techno-fizzle over there. Jan Sterling's wonderful performance in Caged (1950) the other night as the tender-tough-dumb little prostitute was spot on, along with all the other ladies in that great story. Did she ever give a bad performance? I doubt it. I particularly like her bravery in the scene in The High and The Mighty in which she removed all her makeup, (though truth be told, she didn't look all that haggard), despite the cliche ridden script indicating her nakedness as a "thing of shame"...

I'm so glad to hear that an old friend such as Jane Russell was near Ms. Sterling at the end of her life. I know that Miss Russell was always cast as a sexy floozie, but she always struck me as a kind gym teacher type, (and I mean that as a compliment!). She seems far too down to earth and just plain nice to be the bimbo she portrayed so often and so well. Maybe I'm reading way too much into her behavior on screen and off, but there was a "niceness" about her that couldn't be hidden, even with Howard Hughes' cantilevered brassiere. I just caught La Russell as an allegedly spoiled movie star in the late '50s in a ghastly dramedy called The Fuzzy Pink Nightgown (1956) the other morning on TCM. She was by far the most likable person on screen, belying the prurient and vulgar script that she was saddled with through no fault of her own. Glad to hear she's a nice gal in reality too.

Vecchiolarry
Posts: 1395
Joined: May 6th, 2007, 10:15 pm
Location: Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Postby Vecchiolarry » June 22nd, 2007, 6:34 pm

Hi Christy & Moira,

I have never heard a bad word about Jane Russell. She was quite religious and sang religious songs. Agnes Moorehead liked her very much and they made a movie together called "The Revolt of Mamie Stover". They both played prostitutes - imagine!!

Yes, Jan always gave a good performance. I think of a movie I first saw her in called "The Vanquished" about after the American Civil War and I think Jan kills a 'Yankee".... That's how I first remember her...
And, Jane did a pretty good job of what she was given. She always seemed to have a sly smile on her face, as if she was teasing you and she and you knew this was a bunch of hooey and 'let's just have a good time and get on with it!!'......

Russell started an organization called "WAIF" which helped war orphans get adopted in the US.

I think she had a drinking problem later in life but then so did Mercedes McCambridge and I always loved her.

I never knew either Jan or Jane but I wouldn't have said no to knowing them.

Larry

User avatar
knitwit45
Posts: 4720
Joined: May 4th, 2007, 9:33 pm
Location: Gardner, KS

Postby knitwit45 » June 22nd, 2007, 7:21 pm

Larry, I had a problem about a month or two ago logging in. I emailed the TCM staff, and they resolved the problem within 2 days.

If you can't get back on the boards, you MUST start your reminiscences thread over here. We need stories of Nell, and you, and your great checkered past :lol: hanging out with the Real stars of Hollywood. (And Nell's chauffeur) :oops:
"Life is not the way it's supposed to be.. It's the way it is..
The way we cope with it, is what makes the difference." ~ Virginia Satir
""Most people pursue pleasure with such breathless haste that they hurry past it." ~ Soren Kierkegaard

User avatar
mongoII
Posts: 12345
Joined: April 14th, 2007, 7:37 pm
Location: Florida

Postby mongoII » June 22nd, 2007, 10:38 pm

Larry, I was wondering why I didn't see you on the TCM boards lately.
I'm glad that you appreciated the Jan Sterling profile. She was always a favorite of mine and I especially enjoyed her performance in "The High and the Mighty".
I would transfer "In the Spotlight" over here but I can't quite get the knack of posting the pictures yet. I'll need another lesson from Moira in layman terms to do so.

Vecchiolarry
Posts: 1395
Joined: May 6th, 2007, 10:15 pm
Location: Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Postby Vecchiolarry » June 23rd, 2007, 8:57 am

Hi Everyone,

Just this morning when I woke up to news that Paris Hilton was going to be paid for an 'interview', I said (decried!) out loud, "What?? - why not interview Jane Russell, who actually has something to say!!"....

I remember seeing a TV interview years ago (Merv Griffin??), when he asked her about being a "sex symbol" and she laughed and said, "Well, I always kept my clothes on and compared to today, I was 'Little Bo Peep'!!!!!!........

I'm enjoying those good pictures of Jan Sterling. What a doll...

Larry

User avatar
ken123
Posts: 1807
Joined: April 14th, 2007, 4:08 pm
Location: Chicago

Postby ken123 » June 23rd, 2007, 6:54 pm

IMHO Ms Hilton has about as much sex appeal as Shemp and less intelligence. :wink:

Vecchiolarry
Posts: 1395
Joined: May 6th, 2007, 10:15 pm
Location: Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Postby Vecchiolarry » June 23rd, 2007, 8:57 pm

Hey Ken,

Too true!!

Our news(?) program tonight stated that Larry King would get her first interview.
I'll just bet he's doing cartwheels over getting this important scoop!!

Larry

User avatar
mongoII
Posts: 12345
Joined: April 14th, 2007, 7:37 pm
Location: Florida

Postby mongoII » July 2nd, 2007, 6:50 pm

In the Spotlight:[b] Jan Sterling[/b]

She was born Jane Sterling Adriance on April 3, 1921 in New York City, into a prosperous family. Sterling was educated in private schools before heading to Europe with her family. She was schooled by private tutors in London and Paris, and was enrolled in Fay Compton's dramatic school in London.

As a teenager she returned to Manhattan, and billed with such aliases as Jane Adriance and Jane Sterling, began her career by making a Broadway appearance in "Bachelor Born", and went on to appear in such major stage offerings as "Panama Hattie", "Over 21", "Present Laughter" and "Born Yesterday" making a big splash.

In 1947, she made her movies debut in "Tycoon", now billed as Jane Darian. Seldom cast in passive roles, Sterling was at her best in parts calling for hard-bitten, sometimes hard-boiled determination. Actress Ruth Gordon insisted she change her stage name and the two hit upon Jan Sterling.

In 1948 she broke into films as the scheming floozy who tries to take the baby of Academy Award winner Jane Wyman's character in "Johnny Belinda", but ultimately ends up helping "Belinda" (Wyman) by clearing her of murder. Shuttling between films and television, she showed up in nearly all the major live anthologies of the 1950s, playing in "bad girl" film roles in "Caged" as Smoochie (1950), "Mystery Street" good noir (1950), "The Big Carnival" won National Board of Review award best actress (1951), "Flesh and Fury" (1952), "The Human Jungle" (1954), and "Female on the Beach" (1955) with Joan Crawford, while making a more sympathetic impression in "Sky Full of Moon" (1952).
She was quoted: "I was the original 'happy hooker.' I've played her in 10 of my 42 movies, and I've played her on television and on the stage."

In 1954 Sterling was nominated for an Academy Award and won a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in "The High and the Mighty". Also the same year, she travelled to England to play the role of Julia in the first film version of George Orwell's "1984", despite being several months pregnant at the time.
During the following years, she appeared regularly in movies like "Slaughter on Tenth Avenue", "Kathy O", and "The Female Animal".
Her films include "Union Station", "The Mating Season", "Rhubarb", "Split Second", "Pony Express", "Alaska Seas", "Women's Prison", "The Harder They Fall" with Bogart, "High School Confidential", "The Incident", etc.

She retired from films in favor of the stage in 1969 and returned before the cameras in 1979 to portray Lou Henry Hoover in the outstanding TV miniseries "Backstairs at the White House", among other TV shows until 1988 including "Little House on the Prairie" as Charles Ingalls mother.

Married and divorced to actor John Merivale in the 1940s, Sterling's career slipped down after the death of her second husband, actor Paul Douglas, in 1959 (one son Adams). In the 1970s, she entered into a longlasting personal relationship with the late actor and American expatriate in the UK, Sam Wanamaker, but they never married.

Inactive for nearly two decades, she made an appearance at the Cinecon Film Festival in Los Angeles in the fall of 2001.

After a long bout with diabetes, a broken hip, a series of strokes and the death of her only child, her son, Adams Douglas, who died in 2003, Sterling died in Los Angeles, California, aged 82.
She is interred in the Garden of Actors Churchyard Cemetery in London, England.

Miss Sterling has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Joseph Goodheart

User avatar
Vienna
Posts: 398
Joined: October 24th, 2012, 8:03 am
Location: Scotland
Contact:

Re: Jan Sterling - "In the Spotlight"

Postby Vienna » October 31st, 2012, 9:26 am

Thank you for lovely tribute to Jan Sterling. I recently saw Jan in a film new to me SLAUGHTER ON Tenth AVENUE in which she played a character entirely different from anything I had seen her in before, with little makeup, no fancy clothes , just sheer dramatic acting ability. Surely one of her finest performances.

User avatar
mongoII
Posts: 12345
Joined: April 14th, 2007, 7:37 pm
Location: Florida

Re: Jan Sterling - "In the Spotlight"

Postby mongoII » October 31st, 2012, 10:55 am

Your quite welcome, Vienna. I'm glad that you enjoyed it.
Joseph Goodheart

User avatar
JackFavell
Posts: 11946
Joined: April 20th, 2009, 9:56 am

Re: Jan Sterling - "In the Spotlight"

Postby JackFavell » December 2nd, 2012, 10:41 am

Love Jan Sterling in everything I've seen her in. She was an extremely talented actress, one can see the dedication in her performances. She digs deeper and shows more ambivalent character traits than just about any other actress I can think of from that time period. Is it wrong of me to wish she had gotten a lot of the roles that went to Shelley Winters (who I also like)?


Return to “The People of Film”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 8 guests