JANET LEIGH Biography - Actors and Actresses


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Name: Jeanette Helen Morrison                                                                   
Born: 6 July 1927 Merced, California, United States                                             
Died: 3 October 2004 Los Angeles, California, United States                                     
Jeanette Helen Morrison (July 6, 1927 – October 3, 2004) — better known as Janet           
Leigh — was an Academy Award-nominated and Golden Globe-winning American actress.             
Leigh was born in Merced, California, the only child of Helen Lita (née                       
Westergard) and Frederick Robert Morrison. She was discovered by actress Norma                 
Shearer, whose late husband Irving Thalberg had been a senior executive at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. 
Shearer showed talent agent Lew Wasserman the photograph she had seen of Leigh                 
while vacationing at the ski resort where the girl's parents worked. She left                   
the University of the Pacific, where she was studying music and psychology,                     
after Wasserman secured a contract with MGM.                                                   
Throughout the 1950s, Leigh starred in movies that well showed off her beautiful               
presence, most notably taking the leading blonde role in the musical comedy My                 
Sister Eileen, co-starring Jack Lemmon, Betty Garrett and Dick York.                           
Leigh's best-known role was as the morally ambiguous Marion Crane in the Alfred                 
Hitchcock classic 1960 film Psycho. In spite of her outstanding performance as                 
Crane, Leigh went through typecasting and spent most of her career doing guest                 
appearances on TV shows. Her performance earned her a Golden Globe and an                       
Academy award nomination. Years later, she wrote a book about the making of                     
Psycho, in which she dispelled the urban legends which had popped up around it,                 
notably, about the immortal "shower scene."                                                     
In 1975, Leigh played a retired Hollywood song and dance star opposite Peter                   
Falk and John Payne in Columbo: Forgotten Lady. She also appeared in two horror                 
films with her daughter, Jamie Lee Curtis, playing a major role in The Fog (1980),             
and making a brief appearance in Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998).