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Famous Like Me > Singer > D > Donna Douglas

Profile of Donna Douglas on Famous Like Me

Name: Donna Douglas  
Also Know As:
Date of Birth: 26th September 1933
Place of Birth: Baywood, Louisiana
Profession: Singer
From Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia
Donna Douglas (undated photograph)

Donna Douglas (born September 26, 1933) is an American actress. She is best-known for her role as Elly May in the long-running TV series The Beverly Hillbillies.

Born Dorothy Smith in Baywood, Louisiana, she grew up on the farm of her grandparents loving animals and nature, climbing trees, swinging on vines and playing football and softball. She was a cheerleader as a teenager and won some beauty contests. She was awarded the titles "Miss Baton Rouge" and, in 1957, "Miss New Orleans."

She went to New York to pursue a career in entertainment and started out as a model for toothpaste ads. She was featured as the "Letters Girl" on The Perry Como Show in 1957, and as the "Billboard Girl" on The Steve Allen Show in 1959. These and other TV appearances led New York photographers and newspaper reporters to award her the "Miss By-line" crown, which she wore on The Ed Sullivan Show.

Producer Hal Wallis saw the Sullivan episode and cast her in the role of Marjorie Burke in the movie drama Career (1959) starring Anthony Franciosa, Dean Martin and Shirley MacLaine. This was followed by a bit part in the musical comedy Li'l Abner (1959) and the role of a secretary in the comedy/romance Lover Come Back (1961) starring Rock Hudson, Doris Day and Tony Randall.

Douglas made numerous TV appearances, which include a famous episode of The Twilight Zone titled The Eye of the Beholder (1960).

She had two husbands, Roland Bourgeois (married 1949-divorced 1954) and director Robert M. Leeds (married late 1970s-divorced). She and Bourgeois had one son.

The turning point in Douglas' career came when she was chosen over 500 other actresses to play the role of Elly May Clampett on The Beverly Hillbillies. She is extremely proud of her role and the show, which she says she loved doing.

Her final movie role was as Frankie in Frederick de Cordova's musical comedy Frankie and Johnny (1966) opposite Elvis Presley.

Douglas remained with The Beverly Hillbillies for the entire run of the series. In 1981, she returned for a made-for-TV reunion movie. Having no resentment about being so closely identified with one character, she still makes occasional public appearances in her hillbilly costume of blue jeans with trademark rope belt and a ruffled, pink blouse.

She received her real estate license after The Beverly Hillbillies went off the air in order to have something to fall back on. She did not work in that field long, however, as she remained in show business and found other projects. She was offered a role on a prime-time soap opera, but felt there were too many bad things in it, with not enough family values, and turned it down.

A devoted Christian, Douglas is also a noted gospel singer. She has a gospel album and a country album. She has also written a children's book titled Donna's Critters & Kids: Children's Stories with a Bible Touch, which has Bible stories featuring animals and is combined with a coloring book for ages two to seven.

She has remained busy making appearances, speaking for church groups, youth groups, schools and colleges. She has also appeared at conventions and trade shows

Donna Douglas lives in Huntington Beach, California, but still considers Baton Rouge, Louisiana, her home.


  • Career (1959) (Paramount) ... Marjorie Burke
  • Li'l Abner (1959) (Paramount) ... bit part (uncredited)
  • Lover Come Back (1961) (Universal) ... Deborah
  • Frankie and Johnny (1966) (United Artists) ... Frankie

Selected TV appearances

  • The Twilight Zone (November 11, 1960) ... Janet Tyler ... episode: The Eye of the Beholder
  • 77 Sunset Strip (April 28, 1961) ... Rhoda Sheridan ... episode: The Celluloid Cowboy
  • The Twilight Zone (May 25, 1962) ... Woman ... episode: Cavender Is Coming
  • The Beverly Hillbillies (1962-1971) (series regular) ... Elly May Clampett
  • Night Gallery (January 26, 1972) ... Mildred McVane ... episode: Last Rites for a Dead Druid
  • The Nanny (March 31, 1999) ... Herself ... episode: California, Here We Come

This content from Wikipedia is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Donna Douglas