Blanche Mehaffey

Active - 1924 - 1938  |   Born - Jul 28, 1908   |   Died - Mar 31, 1968   |   Genres - Action, Western, Drama, Crime, Comedy

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Blond American screen actress Blanche Mehaffey was voted a 1924 WAMPAS Baby Star by the Hollywood publicists on the strength of a couple of pleasant comedies opposite Glenn Tryon. She later changed her name to Joan Alden -- presumably to escape maudlin melodramas such as Princess from Hoboken (1927) -- but Call of the Wild (1927), opposite second-string canine star Dynamite, was no improvement, and she returned to her old moniker. Her movies in the early years of sound film were unsuccessful. She had married sound engineer Ralph M. Like and he produced a series of very low-budget melodramas that are still watched -- and laughed at -- today. Ralph Like was the kind of producer who never met a corner he couldn't cut, and several of the Like-Mehaffey collaborations were downright embarrassing. Sally of the Subways (1932), for example, ostensibly a crime drama, was an excruciatingly slow affair that featured neither Sally nor subways, and The Devil Monster (1933) and The Wages of Sin (release date undetermined) delivered little more than alluring titles. Chagrined by the turn her career was taking, Mehaffey changed her name once again, this time to Janet Morgan, but it didn't make a bit of difference, and she left films in 1935. In 1948 an embarrassed Mehaffey attempted to prevent the new owners of her old films from selling them to television. Unfortunately for unsuspecting viewers, the lawsuit was dismissed and cinematic blunders such as Soul of the Slums (1931) and the aforementioned Wages of Sin have become treasured perennials at Bad Movie festivals.

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