Nanette June Leslie, known as Nan Leslie or Nan Coppage (June 4, 1926 – July 30, 2000), was an American actress of film and television. Her longest-running role was as Martha McGivern in 37 episodes of the first season of The Californians.
|Nanette June "Nan" Leslie|
With Sean McClory in The Californians.
June 4, 1926|
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
|Died||July 30, 2000
San Juan Capistrano, California, U.S.
|Cause of death||pneumonia|
|Alma mater||University High School of Los Angeles|
|Occupation||Film and television actress|
|Spouse(s)||Charles Pawley (1949-c. 1960, divorced)
Albert Jason Coppage (married 1968–1990, his death)
Before The Californians, Leslie was known for her roles in three 1947 films: The Woman on the Beach, Under the Tonto Rim and Wild Horse Mesa. The latter two films were productions based on Zane Grey's western novels, and both films starred Tim Holt. For a time she was engaged to marry Holt.
Her acting career began with uncredited roles in 12 films, the first as Prudence in Under Western Skies (1945). Her first credited film role was as Jane Preston in the 1946 film Sunset Pass with co-star James Warren.
In March 1947, Leslie was among several actors and actresses attending the premieres of Trail Street, an RKO Pictures release, with Randolph Scott in the role of Marshal Bat Masterson in the town of Liberal, Kansas. Leslie, however, is not listed in the credits as a cast member of the film.
Her first television guest-starring role came in 1949 on ABC's The Lone Ranger; by 1955, she had made eight guest-starring appearances on the western series. From 1950 to 1955, she appeared in four episodes of CBS's The Gene Autry Show. Leslie was cast in two episodes of the NBC western series The Roy Rogers Show; her first role was Bess Walton in "Jailbreak" (1951). Two years later, she was cast in the episode "Whirlwind Courtship" of Death Valley Days, hosted by Stanley Andrews. In 1953, she also appeared as Jane Sawyer in "Arizona Troubleshooters" of the western series Hopalong Cassidy. She was twice cast on the syndicated western series The Range Rider. In 1954, she played Alias Annie in another syndicated western series Annie Oakley, starring Gail Davis. She had met Davis around 1945 at the RKO studios, and the two remained lifelong friends until Davis' death in 1997.
From 1953 to 1955, Leslie was cast in five episodes each of two other syndicated western series, The Adventures of Kit Carson and The Cisco Kid. In 1956, she appeared in three episodes of The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin.
Leslie's other western roles included Broken Arrow, Dick Powell's Zane Grey Theater, and Wanted: Dead or Alive. She was cast twice in 1958 and 1959, respectively, on the western series Fury. In 1959, she was cast in Shotgun Slade and Wichita Town.
Leslie also appeared in several drama series, including The Public Defender, the anthology drama series The Millionaire, the Cold War drama Behind Closed Doors, three times on the police drama The Lineup, and twice on the police series M Squad.
In 1957, she acted in Circus Boy, the syndicated American Civil War drama series The Gray Ghost, and the syndicated police drama Code 3. In 1958, Leslie acted in the crime drama Richard Diamond, Private Detective.
By 1960, Leslie's career began to wind down. She was cast twice on CBS's Lassie. In 1960, she acted in the western series Riverboat and the mystery series Thriller. In 1961, she appeared in the syndicated detective series Coronado 9, the sitcom Pete and Gladys, The Tall Man, and twice each on The Jack Benny Program and Perry Mason. She acted in the Christian series This Is the Life in 1964 as well as Daniel Boone in 1966. Her last acting role was in the 1968 science fiction film The Bamboo Saucer.
Leslie was married twice; her husbands were socialite Charles Pawley (1915-1975), to whom she was wed from 1949 until around 1960, and Albert Jason Coppage (1920-1990), who was her spouse from 1968 until his death. She spent her later years in Mission Viejo, California. She died in 2000 of pneumonia at the age of 74 in San Juan Capistrano.