Saturday, July 3, 2010

Saturday Scream Queen:
Barbara Payton

Partly because I made reference to her in this week's write-up of Susan Denberg in the Saturday Scream Queens series, but mostly because I'm trying to erase the fact that posted an article to the wrong blog, I am bumping up Barbara Payton's appearance and making two Scream Queen posts this week.

Barbara Payton left home at 19 to pursue a career as an actress. After enjoying great early success, with contracts at Warner Bros. and Universal Pictures, and appearing in movies along side the likes of Gregory Peck and James Cagney, a wild party life-style, along with too many drugs and too much liquor, started taking its toll.

She ended her career doing horror films and thrillers, starting with the rather awful "Bride of the Gorilla" in 1951, but appearing in somewhat better fare from Hammer Films--"Four-Sided Triangle" and "Bad Blonde"--when she went to England in a last-ditch effort to get things back on track. It was too little, too late, and by 1955, Barbara Payton had made her last movie. She died in 1967 of heart and liver failure, at the age of 39, her body and one-time beauty wrecked by alcohol abuse and hard living.

Click here to read reviews of a few of Barbara Payton movies (including horror films "Bride of the Gorilla" and "Four-Sided Triangle") at Shades of Gray.

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