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Overview for Joan Shawlee
Joan Shawlee

Joan Shawlee



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Also Known As: Joan Fulton,Joan Fulton Died: March 22, 1987
Born: March 5, 1926 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Forest Hills, New York, USA Profession: Cast ... actor model nightclub entertainer


While working as a nightclub performer in her native New York City, Joan Shawlee was discovered by comedian Lou Costello of the Abbott and Costello comedy duo. Costello was so impressed by Shawlee that he cast her as an Army lieutenant in the 1947 Abbott and Costello war comedy "Buck Privates Come Home." Shawlee was billed as Joan Fulton in that film and several others, including 1947's "The Vigilantes Return" and "Woman on the Run" in 1950. By the mid-1950s she was credited by her birth name, Joan Shawlee, and started to gain credibility as a wisecracking comedienne, helped in part by her many appearances on TV's "The Abbott and Costello Show." It wasn't until she was cast alongside Marilyn Monroe and Jack Lemmon in 1959's screwball classic "Some Like It Hot," however, that Shawlee's career really began to take off. Shawlee played the tyrannical bandleader Sweet Sue, and quickly earned a fan in the film's director, Billy Wilder. Wilder continued to cast Shawlee in choice supporting roles in several of his later films, including 1960's "The Apartment," 1963's "Irma La Douce," and his last film, 1981's "Buddy Buddy," in which Shawlee played a receptionist.


HelenofMemphis ( 2008-03-18 )

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Though she reportedly played a bit in the 1937 version of A Star Is Born, actress Joan Shawlee's first confirmed professional work was as a model, singer, and nightclub performer. While appearing in New York, Shawlee was discovered by comedian Lou Costello, who put her under personal contract. She was billed as Joan Fulton in her first appearance with Abbott and Costello in the 1947 film Buck Privates Come Home. She reverted to "Shawlee" once she'd gained a reputation as a wisecracking, gum-chewing comedienne, a reputation enhanced by her many appearances on the popular TV sitcom The Abbott and Costello Show. Her films ranged from trash like Prehistoric Women (1950) to treasures like From Here to Eternity. Her best screen role was as dictatorial bandleader Sweet Sue in the Billy Wilder classic Some Like It Hot (1959); Wilder would cast Shawlee in choice supporting roles in his later films, The Apartment (1960), Irma La Douce (1963), and Buddy Buddy (1981). Outside of her work on Abbott and Costello's various television ventures, Joan Shawlee's TV career included regular roles on such series as The Betty Hutton Show, McHale's Navy, The Dick Van Dyke Show (as Morey Amsterdam's wife Pickles), and The Feather and Father Gang. Worked With: Billy Wilder; I.A.L. Diamond

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