Oscar Actors: Moore, Terry (Nominee)–Background, Oscar, Career

Research in Progress: September 13, 2020
Terry Moore Career Summary:

Occupational Inheritance:

Social Class:




Training: child model

Teacher/Inspirational Figure:

Radio Debut:

TV Debut:

Stage Debut:

Broadway Debut:

Film Debut: Maryland, 1940; aged 11

Breakthrough Role:

Oscar Role:

Other Noms:

Other Awards:

Frequent Collaborator:

Screen Image: character actor

Last Film:

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Film Career Span:




Terry Moore is perhaps best known for her role in the 1957 melodrama “Peyton Place.”  But she made her mark earlier, receiving a Best Supporting Actress nomination in 1952 for Come Back, Little Sheba.

Helen Luella Koford (born January 7, 1929), known as Terry Moore, is an American film and television actress.

She is one of the last surviving stars from the Golden Age of Hollywood.

Born January 7, 1929, in Glendale, California, as Helen Luella Koford, Moore grew up in a Mormon family in Los Angeles, California.

She worked as a child model before making her film debut in the 1940 Maryland, in which she was billed as Judy Ford, Jan Ford, and January Ford before taking Terry Moore as her name in 1948.

Moore’s appearances include The Howards of Virginia (1940), On the Sunny Side (1942), My Gal Sal (1942), A-Haunting We Will Go (1942), True to Life (1943), Gaslight (1944) (playing Ingrid Bergman as a child), Since You Went Away (1944), Sweet and Low-Down (1944), and The Clock (1945).[1] As Helen Koford, she had a supporting role in Son of Lassie (1945) and Shadowed (1946).[2] As “Jan Ford” she was billed third in The Devil on Wheels (1947) at Monogram. She was uncredited in Heartaches (1948) and Summer Holiday (1948).

Moore worked in radio in the 1940s, most memorably as Bumps Smith on The Smiths of Hollywood.

Moore’s career received boost when Columbia signed her to a long-term contract. She had the lead in The Return of October (1948) with Glenn Ford, playing a character called Terry Ramsey, after which Terry became her stage name.

Moore was borrowed by RKO to star in Mighty Joe Young (1949), a film about a giant gorilla that won the Best Visual Effects Oscar. George Pal cast her in The Great Rupert (1950) with Jimmy Durante.

At Columbia, Moore co-starred with Mickey Rooney in He’s a Cockeyed Wonder (1950). She also did Gambling House (1950) with Victor Mature at RKO, Two of a Kind (1951), Sunny Side of the Street (1951), and The Barefoot Mailman (1951).

Moore played Marie Buckholder in Come Back, Little Sheba (1952), produced by Hal Wallis, with Burt Lancaster and Shirley Booth as co-stars. She was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her performance.[citation needed]

Moore began appearing in television shows like The Ford Television Theatre and appeared on the cover of Life magazine on July 6, 1953, as “Hollywood’s sexy tomboy”. Her photo was used on the cover of the second issue of the My Diary romance comic book (cover dated March 1950).

Elia Kazan cast Moore in the female lead in Man on a Tightrope (1953), and 20th Century Fox signed her to long-term contract. They gave her the lead in Beneath the 12-Mile Reef (1953), the second film in CinemaScope and a big hit. Also popular was King of the Khyber Rifles (1953) with Tyrone Power.

Moore supported Fred Astaire in Daddy Long Legs (1955) and had the lead in the thrillers Shack Out on 101 (1955) and Portrait of Alison (1955).

Between Heaven and Hell (1956) reunited her with Robert Wagner, the lead man in Beneath the 12-Mile Reef.

She guest-starred on TV shows like The 20th Century-Fox Hour, General Electric Theater, Playhouse 90, Climax!, Studio One in Hollywood, and Rawhide.

Fox used her in Bernardine (1957) with Pat Boone and Peyton Place (1957) with Lana Turner. They then put her in the less popular A Private’s Affair (1959). She was Audie Murphy’s leading lady in Cast a Long Shadow (1959).

Moore had the lead in Platinum High School (1960) and Why Must I Die? (1960), producing the latter.

She guest starred on Checkmate and The Rebel and had a regular role as a rancher’s daughter in the NBC Western Empire. She also appeared on the NBC interview program Here’s Hollywood.

Other appearances during this period include Black Spurs (1965), Town Tamer (1965), Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre, Waco (1966), and A Man Called Dagger (1968) as well as episodes of The Virginian, and Batman.

Moore’s 1970s appearances included Quarantined (1970), Bonanza, The Daredevil (1972), Smash-Up on Interstate 5 (1976), and Death Dimension (1978).

In the 1980s Moore’s roles included appearances in Double Exposure (1982), Hellhole (1985), Going Overboard (1989), American Boyfriends (1989), and Jake Spanner, Private Eye (1989) and episodes of Matt Houston, Knight Rider, Fantasy Island, The Love Boat, True Confessions, and Wiseguy.

At age 55, Moore posed nude in the August 1984 issue of Playboy magazine, photographed by Ken Marcus.

She appeared in and did the story for Beverly Hills Brats (1989).

Moore was in Murder, She Wrote; Marilyn and Me (both in 1991); American Southern (1995); Second Chances (1998) (which she also produced); Mighty Joe Young (1998); and Final Voyage (1999).

She produced but did not appear in America’s Funniest Home Videos and Nandi (1998).

In the 2000s, Moore appeared in Stageghost (2000), Kill Your Darlings (2006), The Still Life (2006), Dewitt & Maria (2010),  guest-starring as Lilly Hill on the crime series True Detective (2014), Aimy in a Cage (2015), Ray Donovan, and Silent Life (2019).

Moore’s first marriage, in 1951, to American football player and Heisman Trophy winner Glenn Davis (known as Mr. Outside when he played at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point), lasted one year.

A subsequent marriage to Eugene McGarth, in 1956, lasted 3 years. One year after this marriage ended, Moore married Stuart Cramer after his divorce from Jean Peters; they had two children, Stuart Cramer IV and actor Grant Cramer, before divorcing in 1972.

In 1979, Moore claimed to have married Richard F. Carey, in Mexico; he disappeared a few days later, having swindled her and others out of their money.

Her 1992 marriage to Jerry Rivers lasted until his death in 2001.

Moore became the subject of public attention as a result of her relationship with Howard Hughes. According to Moore, she and Hughes were married in 1949 in ceremony performed by ship captain in international waters. Moore has said that Hughes destroyed the ship’s log that recorded the marriage, and they separated from each other by 1956, but she and Hughes were never divorced. Moore has explained her marriages during Hughes’ lifetime by saying, “I didn’t care whether I was a bigamist or not, frankly. I mean, my desire to have children was that strong.”

The Texas courts rejected Moore’s claim of being Hughes’ widow based on judicial estoppel; since Moore had claimed in her divorce from Cramer to have been married to him in 1959 and received a property settlement in that case, her claim that she was married to Hughes at the time was inconsistent with that and would not be accepted. Nevertheless, the Hughes heirs agreed that Moore had had a long-term relationship with Hughes and agreed to a financial settlement with her. Moore described the settlement as “not more than eight figures”; a biography of Hughes implies that the settlement was $350,000.

Moore dated actor Glenn Ford in the early 1970s.

Selected filmography

1940 Maryland Girl Uncredited
The Howards of Virginia Neighbor Girl Uncredited
1942 On the Sunny Side Little Girl Uncredited
My Gal Sal Carrie Dreiser Uncredited
A-Haunting We Will Go Dante’s Young Admirer Uncredited
1943 True to Life Little Girl Uncredited
1944 Since You Went Away Refugee Child on Train Uncredited
Gaslight Paula Alquist (age 14) Uncredited
1945 The Clock Girl at Museum Uncredited
Son of Lassie Thea Credited as Helen Koford
1946 Shadowed Virginia ‘Ginny’ Johnson, credited as Helen Koford
1947 The Devil on Wheels Rusty Davis Credited as Jan Ford
1948 The Return of October Terry Ramsey From now on credited as Terry Moore
1949 Mighty Joe Young Jill Young
1950 The Great Rupert Rosalinda Amendola
He’s a Cockeyed Wonder Judy Sears
1951 Gambling House Lynn Warren
Two of a Kind Kathy McIntyre
Sunny Side of the Street Betty Holloway
The Barefoot Mailman Adie Titus
1952 Come Back, Little Sheba Marie Buckholder Nominated–Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress
1953 Beneath the 12-Mile Reef Gwyneth Rhys
King of the Khyber Rifles Susan
1955 Daddy Long Legs Linda Pendleton
Shack Out on 101 Kotty
The United States Steel Hour Caroline Schwendinger Episode: “Scandal at Peppernut”
1956 Portrait of Alison Alison Ford
Between Heaven and Hell Jenny Gifford
The 20th Fox Hour Ann Winslow Episode: “The Moneymaker”
1957 Bernardine Jean Cantrick
Peyton Place, Betty Anderson
1958 Studio One Annabelle Episode: “The Man Who Asked for a Funeral”
1959 Rawhide Dallas Episode: “Incident Of The Tumbleweed” (Season 1 Episode 1, 9 January 1959)
Cast a Long Shadow Janet Calvert
A Private’s Affair Louise Wright
1960 Platinum High School Jennifer Evans (Alternative title: Trouble at Sixteen)
Why Must I Die? Lois King
1961 The Rebel Janice Episode: “The Executioner”
1962–1963 Empire Connie Garrett 20 episodes
1963 Burke’s Law Sarah Kingston Episode: “Who Killed Eleanora Davis?”
1965 Black Spurs Anna
Town Tamer Susan Tavenner Co-starred with Dana Andrews
City of Fear Suzan
1966 My Three Sons Eleanor Episode: “Steve and the Huntress”
Waco Dolly
The Virginian Alma Wilson Episode: “High Stakes”
1967 Batman Venus 3 episodes
1968 A Man Called Dagger Harper Davis
1970 Quarantined Martha Atkinson Television movie
Bonanza Lydia Yates Episode: “Gideon the Good”
1976 Smash-Up on Interstate 5 Trudy Television movie
1978 Death Dimension Madam Maria
1983 Matt Houston Emily Armor Episode: “A Novel Way to Die”
Knight Rider Molly Friedrich Episode: “K.I.T.T. the Cat”
Fantasy Island Audrey Wilkins Episode: “The Butler’s Affair/Roarke’s Sacrifice”
1985 Hellhole Sidnee Hammond
1988 Wiseguy Dr. Leitner Episode: “Phantom Pain”
1989 Going Overboard Mistress
American Boyfriends Al Walker
Beverly Hills Brats Veronica
1991 Marilyn & Me Woman at Hyde’s Funeral Television movie
1995 American Southern Peggin
1998 Mighty Joe Young Elegant Woman at Party
Second Chances Dallas Taylor Judd
1999 Final Voyage Christina
2000 Stageghost Olive
2006 Kill Your Darlings Ella Toscana
The Still Life Mrs. Stratford
2007 The Desert Rose Jamie Shaw
2009 Ariel Liz
2010 Dewitt & Maria Terry
2012 Margarine Wars Miriam Cuningham
2014 Aimy in a Cage Grandma
True Detective Lilly Hill Episode: “Form and Void”
Mansion of Blood Natalie
2016 Ray Donovan Nazani Minassian Episode: “Norman Saves the World”
Merrily Betty Clurman
2018 Saving Flora Sylvia
2019 Silent Life Lady in Black

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