Lisa Davis

Active - 1959 - 1959  |   Genres - Action, Comedy, Western, Drama

Share on

Lisa Davis was one of 1950's cinema's most attractive supporting players. Born Cherry Ann Davis in 1936 to a performing family -- her father was the renowned British bandleader Harry Davis, her mother a chorus girl -- she made her screen debut in 1941, at age five. Her older sister Beryl Davis subsequently found success as a singer, working first with their father's band, and later with Django Reinhardt and Glenn Miller, amongst many others, before coming to America and working with Frank Sinatra. The younger Davis sibling attended the Arts Educational School while continuing to get roles on-screen, and in 1947 portrayed Jean Siimmons' character as a child in the film Woman In The Hall. Three years later, she was considered for the title-role by Walt Disney in his aborted live-action Alice In Wonderland. She later went to work for MGM and later at Columbia, and ended up re-christened Lisa Davis by John Ford while working on the latter's production of The Long Gray Line (1955).

The 19-year-old Davis was, by this time, also starting to attract attention from the press over the men who were interested in her -- the latter included English actor Michael Rennie and American leading man Richard Long. In 1957, she was signed to play a major co-starring role in Queen Of Outer Space (originally "Queen of the Universe"), where she met her future husband, co-star Patrick Waltz. Davis managed to get noticed in the movie, despite competition for attention from Zsa Zsa Gabor and a brace of international beauty pageant winners. Amid more film and television work, and even some theatrical appearances, she and Waltz were married in 1958, and they later had two daughters and a son. Davis had another professional rendezvous with Walt Disney in 1959, when she was approached about portraying one of the characters in the animated feature 101 Dalmations -- Davis voiced the part of Anita, and the movie went on to become her best-known screen work. She retired from acting in the 1960's, and she and Waltz were divorced in 1971, a year before his death from a heart attack.