Sheila Ryan

Active - 1940 - 1958  |   Born - Jun 8, 1921 in Topeka, KS  |   Died - Nov 4, 1975 in Woodland Hills, CA  |   Genres - Mystery, Western, Comedy, Crime, Drama

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Perky brunette leading lady Sheila Ryan became a television pioneer when, in 1938, she appeared on camera in an experimental Los Angeles broadcast. In 1940, Ryan was signed by 20th Century Fox, where she played energetic if unmemorable roles in such films as The Gay Caballero (1940) and Dressed to Kill (1941). She also appeared opposite Laurel and Hardy in two of their Fox vehicles, Great Guns (1941) and A-Haunting We Will Go (1942). Her best opportunity at Fox came in The Gang's All Here (1943), in which she was not only permitted to sing, but was afforded a special-effects "curtain call" in the film's finale. By the late '40s, Ryan's career had dwindled to B-pictures at the lesser studios. While co-starring with Gene Autry in 1950s Mule Train, Ryan fell in love with Autry's sidekick, Pat Buttram; they were married shortly afterward, and remained that way until Ryan's death in 1975. Sheila Ryan retired in 1958 after a handful of TV appearances and a featured role in something called Street of Darkness.

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