Yolande Donlan ~ The Beautiful Starlet

Yolande Donlan

Yolande Donlan was a 1940s starlet who struggled with manic depression.

She was born on June 2, 1920 in Jersey City, New Jersey. Her father was character actor James Donlan. Sadly he was an alcoholic who died in 1938. When she was a child she started taking ballet lessons. Yolande began her career as a chorus girl at MGM and costarred with Bob Hope in the play Roberta. Using the stage name Yolande Mallott she landed small roles in the films Turnabout and The Devil Bat with Bela Lugosi. She also appeared in several Broadway plays and danced with Earl Carroll's Vanities. In 1941 she married Jack Bender but they divorced a year later. She married actor Philip Truex in 1943. They had a son and formed a production company together. Yolande went to London in 1947 where she starred in a very successful production of Born Yesterday. While making the 1949 drama Miss Pilgrim's Progress she fell in love with British director Val Guest.

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Carole Landis Yolande Donlan

She divorced her husband and married Val on September 11, 1954. He directed her in seven more films including The Body Said No and Penny Princess. Yolanda became a popular star in England although she wasn't well-known in America. During the 1950s she appeared in the plays It's Different For Men and Suddenly It's Spring. At the age of thirty-five she was diagnosed with manic depression and began therapy. Her last role was in the 1976 movie Seven Nights In Japan. Then she published her autobiography titled "Shake The Stars Down" and wrote several traveler articles for the Daily Express. Yolande and Val lived in Palm Springs, California and remained happily married until his death in 2006. She later moved London, England. Yolande died on December 30, 2014 at the age of ninety-four.


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