Jayne Mansfield Biography
When Jayne was 16, she married Paul Mansfield and gave birth to their fist child. She took care of their daughter and at the same time enrolled herself at the University of Texas. In the summer of 1953, she attended UCLA before returning to the Southern Methodist University. She was one of the students of Baruch Lumet, the father of the esteemed Sidney Lumet. The same year, 1953, she appeared in the stage production of Death of a Salesman, by Arthur Miller.
While in Texas, she joined several beauty contest and won many awards, including, Miss Photoflash, Miss Fire Prevention and Miss Magnesium Light. In 1954, her husband finally gave up hope that she would give up acting and agreed with her to move to Los Angeles. She returned to UCLA to study drama but she soon landed bit parts at Warner Brothers pictures. Still in 1954, she appeared in Female Jungle for a small role.
In 1955, she was seen in Pete Kellys Blues. She was also in The Burglar, the film adaptation of the novel by David Goodis. In this film noir, which was released two years later, she appeared with Martha Vickers and Dan Duryea. She appeared again in minor role for Warner Brothers in Illegal which starred Edward G. Robinson. She also starred in the Broadway production of Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter.
With the success of her Broadway stint, Jayne Mansfield next appeared the following year in the comedy film, The Girl Cant Help It. With the success of the film, 20th Century Fox signed her up for a long term contract. In 1957, she appeared in The Wayward Bus, an adaptation of the novel by John Steinbeck. She starred with Joan Collins and Dan Daily. The film was a box office hit and she was Golden Globes Most Promising New Comer Female for the year 1957.
Still in 1957, she reprised her Broadway role in the film version of Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter. She also made another movie, the Kiss Them For Me, in 1957. She played opposite Cary Grant but the film failed in the box office. After 1957, Jayne Mansfield would be seen in many other films but she would always be remembered for her comedic talent in her late 50s films.