Yvonne De Carlo


Yvonne De Carlo, born Margaret Yvonne Middleton, is a Canadian actress naturalized American born September 1, 1922 in Vancouver and died January 8, 2007 in Woodland Hills (Los Angeles).

Margaret Yvonne Middleton was born on September 1, 1922 in Vancouver, Canada. She is the daughter of William Middelton, a New Zealander of English origin, and Marie De Carlo (1903-1993), a French woman of Scottish and Italian origin. Her maternal grandfather was Michele De Carlo (1873-1954) from Messina, Sicily and her maternal grandmother was Margaret Purvis (1874-1949) from Scotland. When Yvonne was three years old, her father abandoned her, and she was raised by her mother. Her mother was a dancer and sent her to June Roper”s dance school. She was married from November 21, 1955 to 1974 to Bob Morgan and had two boys, Bruce Ross (1956) and Michael (1957-1997).

She died on January 8, 2007 at the age of 84 in a retirement home in Woodland Hills, California.


Before becoming one of the most devastating brunettes of American cinema, Yvonne De Carlo appeared, uncredited, in a score of films, including Frank Tuttle”s Hitman, with Alan Ladd and Veronica Lake, Sam Wood”s For Whom the Bell Tolls, with Gary Cooper and Ingrid Bergman, Cecil B. DeMille”s The Odyssey of Doctor Wassell. She also turns in front of the cameras of Mitchell Leisen and Mark Sandrich, in several comedies that star Bob Hope, Bing Crosby, Betty Hutton, rubbing shoulders with a number of stars already old such as Ray Milland, Paulette Goddard, Marlene Dietrich, Dorothy Lamour …


In 1944 the role of the dancer Salome who becomes a spy in the nineteenth century reveals it. She then works several times with directors Charles Lamont and George Sherman, has for partners Rod Cameron, Dan Duryea and Howard Duff, but also George Brent (in The Beautiful Slave) and Van Heflin (in Tomahawk). She also distinguished herself in the musical Scheherazade (1947), alongside Jean-Pierre Aumont, and played the famous storyteller in The Eagle of the Desert. In Casbah by John Berry (1948), adaptation of the novel Pépé le Moko, facing Tony Martin and Peter Lorre she succeeds Mireille Balin and Hedy Lamarr.

In addition to these roles of exotic adventuresses, she makes a name for herself in two film noirs with Burt Lancaster: The Demons of Freedom by Jules Dassin and For You I Killed by Robert Siodmak, two classics of the genre. Strong personality of the screen, comparable to Maureen O”Hara, Susan Hayward or Jane Russell, because able to support an action film, a western for example, she plays Calamity Jane in The Girl from the Prairies.


Hollywood continued the following years to exploit its exotic and “virile” vein: Robert Parrish”s Madonna of Desire with Joel McCrea, Raoul Walsh”s La Belle Espionne (1953) with Rock Hudson (after Victor Hugo), Allan Dwan”s Tornado with Cornel Wilde, Jacques Tourneur”s Timbuktu (1959) with Victor Mature perpetuate her image of adventurer and Walsh”s Free Slave (1957), facing Clark Gable, is the peak of this course, the Gone with the Wind actress.

Catalogued as a typical interpreter, she joined Ricardo Montalban, Vittorio Gassman and Pier Angeli in the cast of Sombrero (about a Mexican village) and played Carlos Thompson in William Dieterle”s Magic Fire and Fort Alger. His participation in the peplum of Cecil B. DeMille The Ten Commandments, as the wife of Moses (Charlton Heston), is another peak of his career in the 1950s.

Europe and comedies

At the same time, Yvonne De Carlo diversifies her jobs, particularly in the comedy. She declined the genre in front of British virtuosos: Peter Ustinov in Hotel Sahara (1951), Alec Guiness in Captain Paradise (1953), David Niven in Heritage and old ghosts of Mario Zampi.

The star seems to consider a European career at this time: she plays the title role in La Castiglione in 1954, with Georges Marchal and Paul Meurisse as Napoleon III and in 1958 plays Mary Magdalene in the Italian peplum The Sword and the Cross. In Hollywood she found the thriller alongside George Sanders.

The Monsters

At the dawn of the 1960s, like many of her sisters, Yvonne De Carlo turned to television where Bonanza, Adventures in the Islands and The Virginian did not change her usual roles.

On the big screen, it is still a western that gives her John Wayne and Maureen O”Hara as partners – The Great McLintock in 1963, a form of consecration … In the same register, she will then have as partners Dale Robertson, George Montgomery and Howard Keel. The following year she competes with Michèle Mercier, the European star, with Bob Hope (in the comedy Papa Playboy).

But it was television that boosted her popularity: from 1964 to 1966, she was the heroine of the cult series The Monsters, a horror parody. In 1968, she participated on the big screen in The Brain War, a science fiction classic starring George Hamilton and Suzanne Pleshette, and in 1974 she joined Frank Langella, Ricardo Montalban and Gilbert Roland (a bouquet of exoticism) for yet another adaptation of Zorro.

Horror and humor

Overall, the 1970s directed her towards a cinema bis. Yvonne appears nostalgically in the comedies It Seemed Like a Good Idea at the Time, with Anthony Newley and Stefanie Powers, and Detective like Bogart by Robert Day (1980). They direct it mostly to the horror genre, parody or not – she turns notably The Sect of Hell by Rene Cardona Jr. in 1979. On these sets, she met Stuart Whitman, John Ireland, John Carradine, but also Cornel Wilde, Joseph Cotten or Karen Black. De Carlo still holds the star of A Family Affair (American Gothic) by John Hough alongside Rod Steiger in 1988. In 1991, the legendary star appears in The Riddle is in the Bag (Oscar) by John Landis, with Sylvester Stallone in the lead role.

His longevity is also exercised in television: in 1977 Yvonne de Carlo is part of the cast of the television series Roots, a phenomenon of American television. She found in The Fantastic Island Ricardo Montalban, and played in Arabesque in 1985 and The Black Stallion in 1990 with the dashing Angela Lansbury and Mickey Rooney; the star of the series The Monsters had to meet The Tales from the Crypt: it was done in 1993. The last role of Yvonne De Carlo concerns a TV movie directed by Susan Seidelman in 1995.


Yvonne De Carlo, whose cult status Jean Tulard underlines in his Dictionary of Actors, imposed herself in the 1940s and 50s both as a sex bomb in the manner of Rita Hayworth and Ava Gardner and as a feminist symbol in the manner of Maureen O”Hara; she was also one of the greatest exotic beauties of the time, following just behind Hedy Lamarr, Gene Tierney, Linda Darnell and Debra Paget…

However, if her temperament is indisputable, the history of cinema retains, in general, of her long filmography that the film noir of Jules Dassin and Robert Siodmak, and the films of adventure of Raoul Walsh, especially The Free Slave. Star, she was, popular above all. Robert Parrish, Cecil B. DeMille, Mario Zampi, William Dieterle, Jacques Tourneur, Allan Dwan, Tay Garnett could work with confidence, and the actress, not content with being one of the most spectacular beauties of the screen (between Jennifer Jones and Chelo Alonso) could compete with any male star, in any genre. However, she had few male co-stars of the first rank.

External links


  1. Yvonne De Carlo
  2. Yvonne De Carlo
  3. ^ “”Most Beautiful Girl” Discovered”. Spokane Daily Chronicle. September 18, 1944. Archived from the original on June 6, 2020. Retrieved April 9, 2014.
  4. ^ Cohen, Harold V. (May 7, 1945). “”Salome, Where She Danced” Comes to Harris”. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Archived from the original on June 6, 2020. Retrieved April 9, 2014.
  5. ^ a b “Yvonne De Carlo Chosen for Role Over ”20,000 Beautiful Girls””. Montreal Gazette. July 25, 1945. Archived from the original on March 18, 2021. Retrieved March 25, 2014.
  6. Nils Thor Granlund: The Swedish Showman Who Invented American Entertainment; Hoefling, Larry J.; Inlandia Press, OK, 2008, page 259.
  7. De Carlo, Yvonne; Warren, Doug. Yvonne: An Autobiography (неопр.). — USA: St Martins Press  (англ.) (рус., 1987. — ISBN 0312002173. Page 12
  8. Nils Thor Granlund: The Swedish Showman Who Invented American Entertainment; Hoefling, Larry J.; Inlandia Press, OK, 2008, page 262.
  9. Yvonne: An Autobiography; De Carlo, Yvonne & Warren, Doug; St. Martins Press;1987; Page 60.
  10. De Carlo, Yvonne; Warren, Doug. Yvonne: An Autobiography (неопр.). — USA: St Martins Press  (англ.) (рус., 1987. — ISBN 0312002173.
  11. ^ a b c Le Garzantine – Cinema, Garzanti, 2000, pp. 279–280
  12. ^ a b c d e f Il chi è del cinema, Vol. I, De Agostini, 1984, p. 133
  13. ^ a b c Tutto Cinema. Il libro degli attori, Rizzoli Editore, 1977, p. 56
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