One of the most popular--and overworked--second-echelon leading ladies of the 1930s and 1940s, Ellen Drew was the daughter of a Kansas City barber. She came to Hollywood after winning a beauty contest, playing bits under her given name of Terry Ray until she was promoted to leads in 1938. A fixture of Paramount Pictures from 1938 through 1943, Drew appeared in as many as six films per year; among her leading men were Ronald Colman, William Holden, Basil Rathbone, Dick Powell, Robert Preston, George Raft, and even Jack Benny. She moved to Paramount's next-door neighbor RKO in 1944, then free-lanced in the 1950s. Ellen Drew retired from films in 1957, though her fervent fans continued to besiege her with letters of appreciation.