Jeff Donnell

Biography

Jeff Donnell (July 10, 1921 – April 11, 1988) was an American film and television actress. Born Jean Marie Donnell, she grew up in South Windham, Maine. As a child, she adopted the nickname "Jeff" after the character in her favorite comic strip, Mutt and Jeff.[1] To avoid gender confusion, she was sometimes billed as "(Miss) Jeff Donnell." Career Donnell graduated from Towson High School, Towson, Maryland, in 1938 and attended the Leland Powers School of Drama in Boston, Massachusetts. Later, she studied at the Yale School of Drama.[1] She was signed to a contract by Columbia Pictures in 1942 and made her film debut in My Sister Eileen. She later had roles in some RKO films. She was not a major star, but she did have a lengthy film and television career in various supporting roles, including the role of Gidget's mother, "Dorothy Lawrence", opposite Carl Reiner in the 1961 movie Gidget Goes Hawaiian. In 1966 she made five appearances on Dr. Kildare as Evelyn Driscoll. Her other notable appearances in movies and television include: "Winnie Slade" in The Boogie Man Will Get You (1942) Doughboys in Ireland (1943) "Butch" in Nine Girls (1944) "Nina" in "The Unknown" (1946) One of the "I Love A Mystery" movies. "Penny Mc Carr" in Easy Living (1949) "Sylvia Nicolai" in In a Lonely Place (1950) Thief of Damascus (Leading Lady) Movie (1952) "Alice Gobel" in the George Gobel TV show (1954–1958) Magnificent Roughnecks (1956) as Julie "Sally" in Sweet Smell Of Success (1957) "Miriam Fisher" in The Iron Maiden (1962; released in the U.S. as Swinging Maiden) "Eleanor Digby" in The Addams Family (1966; episode #57) "Cornelia," (Cornelia Fort), a flying instructor in Tora, Tora, Tora (1970) "Mrs James Nelson" in Adam 12 (1973) "Aunt May Parker" in The Amazing Spider-Man (1977) "Stella Fields" in the TV soap opera General Hospital (1980–1988) Death Donnell died of a heart attack on April 11, 1988, aged 66. Her sudden absence from General Hospital, on which she had a recurring role as the Quartermaines' housekeeper at the time of her death, was explained away by the writers as her character having won the lottery and quit her job.

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Known For
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The Guns of Fort Petticoat

Mary Wheller

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A Night to Remember

Anne Stafford Carstairs

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Night Editor

Martha Cochrane

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The Swingin' Maiden

Miriam Fisher

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Carolina Blues

Charlotte Barton

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Over 21

Jan Lupton

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The Unknown

Nina Arnold

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Tars and Spars

Penny McDougal

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Stagecoach Kid

Jessie Arnold

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The Blue Gardenia

Sally Ellis

Starring In
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Murder by Natural Causes

Mrs. Mathews

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Congratulations, It's a Boy!

Rose

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Tora! Tora! Tora!

Cornelia Clark Fort

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The Comic

Nurse

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Gidget Goes to Rome

Mrs. Lawrence

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The Swingin' Maiden

Miriam Fisher

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Gidget Goes Hawaiian

Dorothy Lawrence

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Sweet Smell Of Success

Sally

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The Guns of Fort Petticoat

Mary Wheller

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My Man Godfrey

Molly

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So This Is Love

Henrietta Van Dyke

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The Blue Gardenia

Sally Ellis

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Because You're Mine

Patty Ware

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Skirts Ahoy!

Lt. Giff

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Walk Softly, Stranger

Gwen

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In a Lonely Place

Sylvia Nicolai

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The Fuller Brush Girl

Jane Bixby

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Stagecoach Kid

Jessie Arnold

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Vida Fácil

Penny McCarr

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Roughshod

Elaine Wyatt

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Night Editor

Martha Cochrane

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Tars and Spars

Penny McDougal

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The Unknown

Nina Arnold

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Over 21

Jan Lupton

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Carolina Blues

Charlotte Barton

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Once Upon a Time

Girl from Brooklyn (scenes deleted)

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Mr. Winkle Goes to War

USO Hostess (uncredited)

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Sensations of 1945

Young Girl (uncredited)

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A Night to Remember

Anne Stafford Carstairs

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The Boogie Man Will Get You

Winnie Slade (as Miss Jeff Donnell)

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My Sister Eileen

Helen Loomis (as Miss Jeff Donnell)

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