Jean Carson

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Jean Carson
Born(1923-02-28)February 28, 1923
Charleston, West Virginia, U.S.
DiedNovember 2, 2005(2005-11-02) (aged 82)
Palm Springs, California, U.S.
Spouse(s)Leonard S. Smith, Jr. (1955-1968) (divorced) 1 child
? Parlan (? - ?) (divorced) 1 child
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Jean Carson
Born(1923-02-28)February 28, 1923
Charleston, West Virginia, U.S.
DiedNovember 2, 2005(2005-11-02) (aged 82)
Palm Springs, California, U.S.
Spouse(s)Leonard S. Smith, Jr. (1955-1968) (divorced) 1 child
? Parlan (? - ?) (divorced) 1 child

Jean Carson (February 28, 1923 — November 2, 2005) was an American stage, film and television actress best known for her work on the classic 1960s sitcom The Andy Griffith Show as one of the "fun girls".


Born to Alexander W. Carson and Sadie (nėe Leete; a descendant of William Leete, first governor of the Colony of Connecticut), Jean Carson first became interested in show business as a child, playing a "bad little Indian girl". At the age of twelve, she got her first acting job, five dollars for a small part in a production of Carmen that traveled through her hometown of Charleston, West Virginia.

In high school she was voted Girl Most Likely to Succeed as an Actress. Carson told her mother she was going to be on Broadway and in 1948, after studies at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Carson made her Broadway debut in George S. Kaufman's Bravo. Other Broadway work included Anniversary Waltz with Macdonald Carey, Two Blind Mice with Melvyn Douglas, and Bird Cage, which garnered her a Tony Award nomination.

Carson went on to appear in many pioneering television series, including Studio One, NBC Presents, The Twilight Zone (as Paula in "A Most Unusual Camera", a part written especially for her by Rod Serling) and The Ford Theatre Hour. She continued to make guest starring appearances throughout the 1950s, as well as a regular role on 1959's The Betty Hutton Show (Carson described Hutton as a "foulmouthed old biddy" and said that was the only acting experience she did not enjoy) and roles in films such as 1955's The Phenix City Story and 1958's I Married a Monster from Outer Space. Carson felt she was typecast by some of these roles ("I'm what you call a 'second woman' or 'second tomato.' They never get the man."[citation needed]) and that they helped her get work on The Andy Griffith Show.

Carson had a brief role as Naomi in a 1962 episode, but her most popular role was Daphne, one of the "fun girls", who appeared with Joyce Jameson on a recurring basis from 1962 to 1965. Daphne was a notorious flirt who greeted her objects of affection with a throaty "Hello Doll".[1]

Carson earned fourth billing in the 1968 Peter Sellers comedy The Party, perhaps her best known film. For the first half of the 1970s Carson had a drinking problem which limited her acting career. Her last film role was 1977's Fun with Dick and Jane. She retired early in the next decade, save for some plays in the Palm Springs area (where she had moved to be close to her children). She was active with Alcoholics Anonymous. She associated herself with The Andy Griffith Show for many years, attending cast performances, conventions, and other meetings and writing back to fans personally until she suffered a severe stroke which left her incapacitated in September 2005. On November 2, 2005, Carson died from complications of the stroke; she was 82 years old.[2] Although her raspy voice suggested otherwise, she was not a smoker.


YearTitleRoleOther notes
1949NBC PresentsTV, 1 episode
The Philco Television PlayhouseTV, 1 episode
1949–1952Studio OneMary WarrenTV, 3 episodes
1950The Ford Theatre HourTV, 1 episode
The TrapTV, 1 episode
Robert Montgomery PresentsTV, 1 episode
1951The Adventures of Ellery QueenTV, 2 episodes
1952Schlitz Playhouse of StarsModelTV, 1 episode
1953Eye WitnessTV, 1 episode
1954Inner SanctumVera CraigTV, 1 episode
The MaskTV, 1 episode
The Man Behind the BadgeTV, 1 episode
1955The Phenix City StoryCassie
1957The 20th Century Fox HourEthel MarzackTV, 1 episode
The Gale Storm ShowJosephineTV, 1 episode
The Court of Last ResortMyra NorthTV, 1 episode
M SquadDoris ColbyTV, 1 episode
1958SugarfootLillyTV, 1 episode
Bachelor FatherTV, 1 episode
The Phil Silvers ShowBidgett HepperwhiteTV, 1 episode
I Married a Monster from Outer SpaceHelen Alexander Benson
Death Valley DaysTV, 1 episode
Peter GunnPearlTV, 1 episode
1959Frontier DoctorFlo WarrenTV, 1 episode
The Sound and the FuryMary EllenUncredited
General Electric TheaterDorris KroskyTV, 1 episode
Here Come the JetsJean
The Walter Winchell FileFlorrieTV, 1 episode
The MillionaireMarieTV, 1 episode
1959–1960The Betty Hutton ShowRosemaryTV, unknown episodes
1960The Chevy Mystery ShowDonnaTV, 1 episode
Lock-UpTV, 1 episode
The Twilight ZonePaula DiedrichTV, 1 episode
1961RipcordBlanche TelfordTV, 1 episode
DanteGinny KaneTV, 1 episodes
The Tom Ewell ShowDianeTV, 1 episodes
COronado 9Lois DixonTV, 1 episode
The UntouchablesSylvia OrkinsTV, 1 episode
1962The Joey Bishop ShowTV, 1 episode
Stoney BurkeMerleTV, 1 episode
196377 Sunset StripViola DornTV, 1 episode
1962–1965The Andy Griffith ShowDaphneTV, 4 episodes
1964Perry MasonMrs. MitchellTV, 1 episode
One Man's WayWoman Who Shoots Husband
Burke's LawEagle EyeTV, 1 episode
Wendy and MeMrs. TalbotTV, 1 episode
1966Chamber of HorrorsUncredited
1967Warning ShotCocktail WaitressUnredited
1968The PartyNanny
The OutsiderMary PotterTV, 1 episode
1969Anatomy of a CrimeMary PotterTelevision movie
1977Fun with Dick and JanePaula


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