|Cause of death Esophageal cancer|
Name Deborah Walley
|Years active 1960 – 1999|
TV shows The Mothers-in-Law
|Born August 12, 1941 (1941-08-12) Bridgeport, Connecticut, U.S.|
Died May 10, 2001, Sedona, Arizona, United States
Spouse Chet McCracken (m. 1968–1975), John Ashley (m. 1962–1966)
Children Anthony Brooks Ashley, Justin Ashley Reynolds
Movies Gidget Goes Hawaiian, Beach Blanket Bingo, Spinout, The Ghost in the Invisible, Ski Party
Similar People John Ashley, Diane McBain, Michael Callan, Bobbi Shaw, Dwayne Hickman
Guilty pleasures 344 sometimes in the darkest hour deborah walley
Deborah Walley (August 12, 1943 – May 10, 2001) was an American actress noted for playing the title role in Gidget Goes Hawaiian (1961) and in several Beach Party films.
- Guilty pleasures 344 sometimes in the darkest hour deborah walley
- Deborah walley we ll never change them
- Early years
- Personal life
Deborah walley we ll never change them
She was born in Bridgeport, Connecticut, to Ice Capades skating stars and choreographers, Nathan and Edith Walley. When she was three years old, she made her first public appearance at Madison Square Garden. In her teens, however, she decided to pursue a career in acting.
She attended Central High School in Bridgeport. At 14, she debuted on stage in a summer stock production of Charley's Aunt. During her sophomore year, she attended Rosarian Academy in West Palm Beach, Florida, where she was cast as Cinderella in the Academy's annual musical production at the Royal Poinciana Playhouse in Palm Beach, Florida. She studied acting at New York City's American Academy of Dramatic Arts. She began working on stage in the city.
Walley was discovered by agent Joyce Selznick in a performance in a production of Anton Chekov's Three Sisters. This led her to make her Hollywood film debut as Gidget in 1961's Gidget Goes Hawaiian. From then until 1974 she appeared in fifteen feature-length films, including several of the "Beach Party" films produced by American International Pictures. She also co-starred in the Elvis Presley film Spinout where she and Elvis bonded over a shared interest in spiritual matters.
In 1967, with her movie career starting to decline, Walley portrayed Suzie Hubbard Buell in the comedy series The Mothers-in-Law, comedian Eve Arden playing her mother and singer-comedian Kaye Ballard playing her mother-in-law. Actress Kay Cole had played Suzie in the original pilot but was replaced by Walley, who played her through the series' two seasons on the air.
After moving to Sedona, Arizona, to bring up her children, Walley co-founded two children's theater companies, Pied Piper Productions and the Sedona Children's Theatre. She also wrote scripts and taught acting and production techniques to American Indians and was co-founder of Swiftwind Theater Company.
From 1962-66, Walley was married to actor John Ashley, a co-star of ABC's Straightaway series about auto racing from 1961–1962 and one of the main actors in the "Beach Party" films. The couple had a son, Anthony Brooks Ashley. John Ashley preceded his former wife in death by four years. On his gravestone, the inscription says that he was a "loving husband and father".
Walley died of esophageal cancer on May 10, 2001, at her home in Sedona, Arizona, aged 57. She was survived by her two sons: Anthony Brooks Ashley, a director, editor, and producer in Hollywood; and Justin Ashley Reynolds, an internet entrepreneur in Phoenix, Arizona.
Walley's work in Gidget Goes Hawaiian brought her the Photoplay Gold Medal Award for Favorite Female Newcomer. She was named Photoplay magazine's 'Most Popular Actress of 1961'.