In a career that has lasted over six-decades and more than 500 credits, film and television actress Beverly Washburn is perhaps best known today for her work in such films as Here Comes the Groom (1951), OLD YELLER (1957) and Spider Baby or, The Maddest Story Ever Told (1967) and on the television shows The New Loretta Young Show and Star Trek.
Born in Los Angeles, California, Washburn made her first film appearance at the age of seven in The Killer That Stalked New York (1950). Excelling at both comedy and drama even at a young age, Washburn became best known for her ability to cry on queue—leading to countless television shows and films. Following her film debut, she would appear on such anthology series as The Jack Benny Program, The Ford Television Theatre and The Red Skelton Hour, as well as TV shows such as Omnibus and Dragnet. With her film career, she would appear with such iconic stars as Bing Crosby and Jane Wyman (Here Comes the Groom); James Stewart, Charlton Heston and Betty Hutton (The Greatest Show on Earth ); Alan Ladd (Shane ); and Kirk Douglas (The Juggler ). In 1954, she was cast in The Loretta Young Show, and would again star opposite Young (this time as Young’s teenage daughter) in The New Loretta Young Show starting in 1962. In 1957, she starred alongside Dorothy McGuire, Fess Parker and Tommy Kirk in the Disney classic OLD YELLER. In the 1960s, following the success of The New Loretta Young Show, Washburn continued to appear in numerous films and TV shows including: Gidget, Star Trek, Spider Baby (1967, with Lon Chaney Jr.) and Pit Stop (1969, with Ellen Burstyn). More recently, she has appeared in Charles Dennis’ Hard Four (2007), the horror film Paranormal Extremes: Text Messages from the Dead (2015) and the soon to be released sci-fi comedy Unbelievable!!!!! (2016).
She wrote her autobiography, Reel Tears: The Beverly Washburn Story in 2009, with a second edition of the book, Reel Tears: The Beverly Washburn Story, Take Two coming out in 2013. In 2012, she toured the country on a speaking tour titled “Beverly Washburn’s Hollywood,” in which she recounted the exciting behind-the-scenes stories of her career and gave lessons on acting.