Born Beulah Irene Herwick in Venice, Los Angeles, California. She began her acting career after being introduced to a casting agent from MGM. After a successful screen test, she was signed by the studio and made her screen debut in the 1933 film The Stranger’s Return, opposite Lionel Barrymore. Though signed by MGM, Hervey was loaned out by the studio and appeared in several films including United Artists’ The Count of Monte Cristo (1934) and With Words and Music, released by Grand National Films Inc.. In 1936, Hervey left MGM and signed with Universal Pictures. While at Universal, Hervey appeared in The League of Frightened Men (1937) and Destry Rides Again (1939) with Marlene Dietrich and James Stewart. At Universal from 1940 to 1943, Hervey had the lead in 11 B pictures, one A (The Boys from Syracuse) and one serial (Gang Busters), all excellent. In 1943, Hervey was seriously injured in a car accident and was forced to retire from acting for five years. Though she did briefly return to acting for the stage play No Way Out, where she played Dr. Enid Karley, in 1944. A photograph from Radio pictures. NY-746-7. Irene Hervey. beautiful stage and screen player,is appearing in the current Radio picture ” The Marriance symphony ” with Diana Wynyard and Clive Brook. She is native daughter of the Golden West. Hervey returned to acting in 1948 with the film Mickey, followed by Mr. Peabody and the Mermaid. By the early 1950s, she began appearing in the new medium of the era; television. Throughout the 1950s and early 1960s, Hervey appeared in several television series, including the crime dramas Richard Diamond, Private Detective, Peter Gunn, and Hawaiian Eye. She also made three guest appearances on Perry Mason: in 1958 she played Helen Bartlett in “The Case of the Black-Eyed Blonde;” in 1961 she played Grace Davies in “The Case of the Jealous Journalist,” and in 1963 she played Jill Garson in “The Case of the Lawful Lazarus.” In 1965, she landed a regular role on The Young Marrieds, followed by a stint on the short-lived Anne Francis series Honey West as the titular character’s Aunt Meg.
In 1969, Hervey was nominated for an Emmy Award For Outstanding Single Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role for her appearance on My Three Sons. After her roles as Mrs. Durant in the comedy Cactus Flower and as Madge in the 1971 thriller film Play Misty for Me with Clint Eastwood, Hervey retired from acting. She took a job working at a travel agency in Sherman Oaks, California and briefly returned to acting in 1978 with a role in Charlie’s Angels. In 1981, she made her last on-screen appearance in the television movie Goliath Awaits. As a teenager, Hervey married her first husband William Fenderson in 1929 and had a daughter, Gail, before they divorced. She was briefly engaged to Robert Taylor during the mid 1930s. In 1936, she met and married actor Allan Jones. The couple had a son, singer Jack Jones, before divorcing in 1957. On December 20, 1998, Hervey died of heart failure in Woodland Hills in Los Angeles at the age of eighty-nine. For her contribution to the motion picture industry, Irene Hervey has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6338 Hollywood Boulevard.
- July, 11, 1909
- Venice, Los Angeles, California
- December, 20, 1998
- Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, California
Cause of Death
- cardiovascular disease
- Forest Lawn Memorial Park (Hollywood Hills)
- Los Angeles, California