Joan Evans (actress)

Joan Evans (born Joan Eunson,[1] July 18, 1934) is an American film actress.

Joan Evans
Joan Evans in Edge of Doom.jpg
Evans in Edge of Doom (1950)
Joan Eunson

(1934-07-18) July 18, 1934 (age 86)
New York City, U.S.
Years active1949–1961
Spouse(s)Kirby Weatherly (m. 1952; 2 children)

Early yearsEdit

Evans's parents were Hollywood writers Dale Eunson and Katherine Albert. Her father wrote the book The Day They Gave Babies Away, which was made into the movie All Mine to Give (1957). She was named after actress Joan Crawford, her godmother.[2] Before she appeared in movies, she played Gretel In a school performance of "Hansel and Gretel."[3]


Sam GoldwynEdit

Evans appeared in three movies with actor Farley Granger. Her first film with him was as the title role in Roseanna McCoy (1949), based on the real-life romance between two members of the Hatfield-McCoy feud. She gained the role after producer Samuel Goldwyn conducted a national talent search after the original star, Cathy O'Donnell, pulled out. Evans was only 14 years old when she started work on Roseanna McCoy, and her parents added two years to her age so she could claim to be 16 when the film was released.[4][5][6]

Evans' film career was launched with her three pictures opposite Granger, including a supporting role in the drama Our Very Own (1950) and a featured part in the crime story Edge of Doom (1950).[7]

She had top billing as a suicidal teenager in RKO's drama On the Loose (1951),[8] then second billing to Esther Williams in an MGM musical comedy, Skirts Ahoy! (1952).

Goldwyn loaned her to Universal where she was third billed as Irene Dunne's daughter in It Grows on Trees (1952).[9] She was Audie Murphy's leading lady in Column South (1953).


At Republic, she starred as the love interest of John Derek in a western, The Outcast (1954), and started appearing on TV shows like General Electric Theatre, Climax!, The Millionaire, Schlitz Playhouse, Cavalcade of America, Lux Video Theatre, Cheyenne, Wagon Train, 77 Sunset Strip and Zorro.[10]

She had the lead in a crime film for Republic, A Strange Adventure (1956) and was reunited with Murphy for No Name on the Bullet (1959). For Sam Katzman she was one of The Flying Fontaines (1959).[11]

Her final performances were in The Chevy Mystery Show, The Rebel, Outlaws, Tales of Wells Fargo, The Brothers Brannagan, Ripcord, and The Tall Man. Her last feature film was The Walking Target. Her last role was in the episode "The Killer Legend" of Laramie as Julie Wade.[12]

She retired from acting in 1961.


In the 1950s, Evans wrote articles for Photoplay magazine. Beginning in May 1966, she was editor of Hollywood Studio Magazine, using her married name, Joan Evans Weatherly.[2]

Later yearsEdit

Evans became an educator, and in the 1970s she was the director of Carden Academy in Van Nuys, California.[13]

Personal lifeEdit

When Evans was 17 years old, she announced that she would marry a car salesman named Kirby Weatherly.[14]

Her parents asked godmother Joan Crawford to dissuade her from marrying since Evans was so young, but Crawford not only gave the couple her blessing, she also had the wedding ceremony performed right in her own house without having the parents present. Evans's marriage to Weatherly lasted, but the friendship between Evans' parents and Crawford ended.[15]

The Weatherlys had a daughter on August 16, 1955.[16]

In 1984, Joan Evans and her husband signed a tribute to Joan Crawford in Daily Variety.[17]





  1. ^ Room, Adrian (2012). Dictionary of Pseudonyms: 13,000 Assumed Names and Their Origins, 5th ed. McFarland. p. 168. ISBN 9780786457632. Retrieved September 21, 2017. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ a b Slide, Anthony (2010). Inside the Hollywood Fan Magazine: A History of Star Makers, Fabricators, and Gossip Mongers. Univ. Press of Mississippi. p. 77. ISBN 9781604734140. Retrieved September 21, 2017. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^ "Joan Evans". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. October 25, 1949. p. 31. Retrieved May 21, 2020.
  4. ^ Scheuer, Philip K. (September 12, 1948). "GOLDWYN'S NEW DISCOVERY CALLED CINDERELLA STORY: Goldwyn Find Called 'Great'". Los Angeles Times. p. D1.
  5. ^ "ON THE WAY TO STARDOM". New York Times. September 12, 1948. p. X5.
  6. ^ THOMAS M. PRYOR (April 17, 1949). "MIXING THE THREE R's WITH STARDOM". New York Times. p. X5.
  7. ^ "JOAN EVANS GETS LEAD IN NEW FILM:". New York Times. September 2, 1949. p. 14.
  8. ^ "LEAD IN 'JEALOUSY' TO SPENCER TRACY". New York Times. December 18, 1950. p. 34.
  9. ^ "WILLIAMS WRITING NEW MOVIE SCRIPT". New York Times. February 2, 1952. p. 10.
  10. ^ Schallert, Edwin (September 14, 1953). "Tyrone Power Stars in 'Gray Line;' Joan Evans in 'Red Horizon'". Los Angeles Times. p. A9.
  11. ^ Scheuer, Philip K (August 28, 1958). "Cindy Robbins Has Rock as Romancer: Glendale Girl in 'This Earth'; U-I Signs Joan Evans, Drake". Los Angeles Times. p. B7.
  12. ^ "Career of 1950s television actress faded in '60s". Austin American-Statesman (FINAL ed.). April 15, 1990. p. 3.
  13. ^ Jackovich, Karen (March 3, 1977). "Actress Joan Evans now a 'schoolmarm'". Valley News. California, Van Nuys. p. 29. Retrieved September 21, 2017 – via CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)  
  14. ^ Hopper, Hedda (July 25, 1952). "Joan Evans, Starlet, Weds". Los Angeles Times. p. 1.
  15. ^ Hadleigh, Boze (1999). Celebrity Feuds!: The Cattiest Rows, Spats, and Tiffs Ever Recorded. Taylor Trade Publishing. p. 188. ISBN 9781461708582. Retrieved September 21, 2017. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  16. ^ "Girl for Joan Evans". The Corpus Christi Caller-Times. Texas, Corpus Christi. Associated Press. August 17, 1955. p. 34. Retrieved September 21, 2017 – via CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)  
  17. ^ Joan Crawford fansite

External linksEdit