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This relatively obscure, sweet-faced "B" level ingénue of the post-war 40s and 50s was born Beverly Jean Saul of modest beginnings in Scranton, Pennsylvania, on July 5, 1927. Her mother was a secretary who secured piano and music lessons for her young daughter. Her father was employed with a typewriter company. As a teenager Beverly made her singing debut on radio. Moving to Hollywood with her mother, she was groomed by MGM at the ripe old age of 14 and made her first picture with a bit part in The Youngest Profession (1943) using her real name. She was given the more attractive marquee name of "Beverly Tyler" before the ink had barely dried on her contract. Her career showed some signs of improvement after appearing opposite Tom Drake in The Green Years (1946) and Peter Lawford in the lightweight comedy My Brother Talks to Horses (1947), but then she was forced to wait out a lull.
Strangely enough, other than for a brief singing bit in Best Foot Forward (1943), Beverly was never promoted in musicals by MGM, or any other studio for that matter -- although she did test once for the Kathryn Grayson part in That Midnight Kiss (1949) starring Mario Lanza. She did, however, appear in the short-lived Kurt Weill musical "The Firebrand of Florence" on Broadway in 1945, and performed in the musical "Miss Liberty" in Los Angeles in 1950. Beverly also sang on TV on such variety shows as "Cavalcade of Stars" and "Shower of Stars."
She returned to the camera after a three-year absence in 1950 with Mickey Rooney in The Fireball (1950), and in another horse film, The Palomino (1950). Most of the roles offered had her playing an altruistic love interest amid rugged surroundings in such western adventures as The Battle at Apache Pass (1952) and The Cimarron Kid (1952). She made only a handful of films over the course of her career, which effectively ended once Voodoo Island (1957) and Hong Kong Confidential (1958) were in the can. A serviceable co-star, little attempt was made by the Hollywood powers-that-be to effectively challenge her multiple talents.
Although she dated the likes of Tom Drake, Peter Lawford, Audie Murphy, Mickey Rooney and Rory Calhoun, this lovely sparrow did not settle down in marriage until 1962 when she wed comedy writer/director Jim Jordan, Jr. ("The Colgate Comedy Hour"), who was the son of the famous "Fibber McGee & Molly" radio couple. Beverly instantly retired from the business and together the couple produced a son. The only performing she has done over the years was to appear in a few local theater productions in Reno, Nevada, having moved there in 1972. Her husband later became a developer. Beverly died at age 78 of a pulmonary embolism on November 23, 2005, and was survived by her son, James W. Jordan, and three step-daughters.
List of links to Beverly Tyler fansites:
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