Dolores Donlon

Active - 1954 - 1961  |   Genres - Drama, Crime, Mystery, Thriller, Western

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Model-turned-actress Dolores Donlon attracted the attention of producers from the mid-1940s to the early 1960s, but they seldom looked past her admittedly considerable physical attributes, to see if there was an actress there. Most of her film appearances were bits, however, which mostly focused on her exceptionally voluptuous figure. Born Patricia Vaniver in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, she first began working as a model in the mid-1940s, working as Pat Van Iver. Her early screen work consisted of uncredited walk-on parts, in movies ranging from Dough Girls (1948) to Easter Parade (1948) -- Donlon was more set decoration than actress at that point. By 1954, however, she had moved up to credited roles in movies such as The Long Wait, Security Risk, and Flight To Hong Kong. She began doing television around this time as well, including appearances on The Jack Benny Program and westerns and adventure series such as The Texan and Richard Diamond, Private Detective. But Donlon's most prominent (and enduring, thanks to decades of reruns) small-screen appearance came on I Love Lucy in the episode "Don Juan And The Starlets," as herself -- introducing herself under her own name, she plays one of a bevy of young actresses assigned to surround Desi Arnaz's Ricky Ricardo in a photo shoot, during his sojourn to Hollywood in search of movie stardom. In August of 1957, Donlon achieved the height of her fame as a model when she was the Playmate of the Month in that issue of Playboy magazine. During the early 1960s, she also made a brief splash in Europe as the star of the drama Nude Odyssey (1961). Donlon gave up acting in 1962, following her marriage to New York Philharmonic violinist

(and fellow Philadelphian) Robert de Pasquale.

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