Born Dixie Kay Nelson in Santa Fe, New Mexico, on August 15, 1933, petite actress Lori Nelson spent her formative years working in radio and as a child model. Longing to be an actress, she succeeded early when Universal-International put her under contract on her 17th birthday. Coming up through the studio system, Nelson had to wait for nearly two years before her first film opened, which was Ma and Pa Kettle at the Fair (1952; with Marjorie Main). She went on to star in a number of Universal's cult classics, including Revenge of the Creature (1955; with John Agar and John Bromfield) and Underwater! (1955; with Jane Russell).

Lori NelsonLori NelsonLori NelsonLori Nelson

Lori Nelson promotional photos, mostly from Universal

When Nelson's Universal-International contract lapsed, she freelanced in mostly low-budget films, such as Hot Rod Girl (1956; with John Smith and Chuck Connors) and Untamed Youth (1957; with Mamie Van Doren). In 1957, she accepted a part in the syndicated TV series How to Marry A Millionaire alongside Merry Anders and Barbara Eden. However, Nelson left the show after the first season and was replaced by Lisa Gaye. The series was canceled in 1959 after two seasons.

the films of lori nelson

Francis Goes to West Point (1952) Get It Here at Movies Unlimited

Lori Nelson and William Reynolds

With William Reynolds in the Universal-International comedy Francis Goes to West Point

Ma and Pa Kettle at the Fair (1952) Get It Here at Movies Unlimited

James Best, Lori Nelson, and Marjorie Main

With James Best and Marjorie Main in the Universal-International series comedy Ma and Pa Kettle at the Fair

All American (1953)

Richard Long, Lori Nelson, and Tony Curtis

With Richard Long and Tony Curtis in the Universal-International romance All American

Tumbleweed (1953)

Lori Nelson, Roy Roberts, and Russell Johnson

With Roy Roberts and Russell Johnson in Tumbleweed

Ma and Pa Kettle at Waikiki (1955) Get It Here at Movies Unlimited

Lori Nelson and Byron PalmerLori Nelson

From the film series Ma and Pa Kettle at Waikiki. LEFT: With Byron Palmer. RIGHT: Promotional photo

Revenge of the Creature (1955)

Lori Nelson and John AgarJohn Agar and Lori NelsonLori Nelson

From Revenge of the Creature, the first sequel to Creature from the Black Lagoon. LEFT and CENTER: With John Agar. RIGHT: Nelson gets carried off by the Creature

Underwater! (1955)

Lori Nelson and Gilbert Roland

Gilbert Roland puts the moves on Lori Nelson in RKO's adventure Underwater!

Day the World Ended (1956)

Lori Nelson and Paul Blaisdell

From Roger Corman's campy sci-fi effort Day the World Ended. Here, Lori Nelson wrestles with mutant Paul Blaisdell

Pardners (1956)

Dean Martin, Agnes Moorehead, and Lori Nelson

With Dean Martin and Agnes Moorehead in the Martin and Lewis western comedy Pardners

Untamed Youth (1957) Get It Here at Movies Unlimited

Lori Nelson and Mamie Van Doren

With Mamie Van Doren in the tortured teen flick Untamed Youth, released by Warner Bros.

How to Marry a Millionaire (1957-1959 Syndicated TV Series)

Barbara Eden, Lori Nelson, and Merry AndersLori Nelson, Barbara Eden, and Merry Anders

Promotional photos from the series How to Marry a Millionaire with Barbara Eden and Merry Anders

Dante (1960-1961 NBC TV Series)

Lori Nelson and Howard Duff

From the NBC TV series Dante in a 1961 episode titled Dial D for Dante. Also pictured is series star Howard Duff

lori nelson today

Nelson's career slowed when she married her first husband, composer Johnny Mann, in 1961. With the constraints of marriage and motherhood, she worked only sporadically, taking guest roles on popular television series, including many westerns. Her marriage to Mann ended in the 1970s, but she chose not to return to acting full-time. Nelson remarried in the 1980s and, in addition to her antiques business, dabbles in film and theatre from time to time.

lori nelson films available from movies unlimited

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The Adventures Of Ma And Pa Kettle, Vol. 1 [DVD] DVD
First, the hillbilly husband and wife played by Marjorie Main and Percy Kilbride are introduced in the all-time favorite barnyard comedy "The Egg and I" (1947), with Claudette Colbert and Fred MacMurray. Then, the Kettle clan is about to be run out of their home until Pa wins "the home of the future" in a slogan-writing contest in "Ma and Pa Kettle" (1949). AKA: "The Further Adventures of Ma and Pa Kettle." The Kettles find themselves in New York where they unwittingly help a crook on the lam in "Ma and Pa Kettle Go to Town" (1950). Finally, Ma and Pa head back to the homestead when they think there's uranium on the premises in "Ma and Pa Kettle Back on the Farm" (1951). 5 3/4 hrs. total. Standard; Soundtrack: English Dolby Digital mono.
The Adventures Of Ma And Pa Kettle, Vol. 2 [DVD] DVD
Marjorie Main and Percy Kilbride lead the hilarious backwoods brood to the county fair with hopes of winning some tuition money for their college-bound daughter in "Ma and Pa Kettle at the Fair" (1952). Jim Backus co-stars. Next, the Kettles wind up in the middle of an espionage plot involving secret plans during a trip to Paris in "Ma and Pa Kettle on Vacation" (1953). Then, Ma and Pa try to help Elwin, one of their 15 kids, win a scholarship to an agricultural college in "Ma and Pa Kettle at Home" (1954). And, when their cousin becomes ill in Hawaii, Ma and Pa head to the islands to help out in her pineapple factory in "Ma and Pa Kettle at Waikiki" (1955). 5 1/2 hrs. total. Standard; Soundtrack: English Dolby Digital mono; Subtitles: Spanish, French.
Adventures Of Francis The Talking Mule, Vol. 1 [DVD] DVD
While on a mission behind enemy lines in Burma, G.I. Donald O'Connor is rescued by "Francis the Talking Mule" (1949) in the debut entry in the articulate animal's series. Patricia Medina co-stars with Chill Wills supplying Francis' voice; look quickly for Tony Curtis. Then, the ranch where Francis resides is in trouble, so the loquacious creature goes to work, helping a race horse get its confidence back in "Francis Goes to the Races" (1951). Next, after O'Connor is given an appointment to a military academy, he brings along his four-legged pal in "Francis Goes to West Point" (1952). And, when O'Connor sets his sights on becoming a reporter, it's up to his big-eared buddy to come up with some hot scoops in "Francis Covers the Big Town."
Bend Of The River [DVD](1952) DVD
James Stewart is an outlaw-turned-wagon scout who must help settlers reach Oregon Territory in an exciting frontier action tale. Also stars Arthur Kennedy as Stewart's treacherous rival, Julie Adams, Harry Morgan and Rock Hudson. 91 min. Standard; Soundtracks: English Dolby Digital mono, French Dolby Digital mono; Subtitles: Spanish, French; theatrical trailer.
James Stewart: The Western Collection [DVD] DVD
Six-disc set includes "Destry Rides Again," "Winchester '73" (1950), "Bend of the River," "The Far Country" (1955), "Night Passage," and "The Rare Breed."
The Barbara Stanwyck Collection [DVD] DVD
The first film to feature Dr. Kildare, "Internes Can't Take Money" (1937) finds ex-convict Barbara Stanwyck seeking help from the caring medico (Joel McCrea) to save her kidnapped daughter from a gangster. With Lloyd Nolan. An elderly Stanwyck looks back on her romance with frontiersman and eventual U.S. senator McCrea in the sweeping drama "The Great Man's Lady" (1942), co-starring Brian Donlevy. Horse breeder Stanwyck's marriage to author/Civil War buff Robert Cummings is endangered thanks to neighbor Diana Lynn in the comedy "The Bride Wore Boots" (1946). With Robert Benchley, Natalie Wood. "The Lady Gambles" (1949) has Stanwyck being bitten by the gaming bug while visiting Las Vegas with reporter spouse Robert Preston. With Stephen McNally and, as a bellhop, Tony Curtis. After leaving for an affair and a stage career, early 1900s actress Stanwyck tries to reunite with husband Richard Carlson and their children in the Douglas Sirk melodrama "All I Desire" (1953). And toy manufacturer Fred MacMurray sees an escape from a stifling homelife when old flame Stanwyck returns in Sirk's "There's Always Tomorrow" (1956), with Joan Bennett. 8 1/2 hrs. total. Standard; Soundtrack: English Dolby Digital mono. Three-disc set.
Sincerely Yours [DVD](1955) DVD
In his starring film debut, the one and only Liberace plays a concert pianist stricken with a disease that robs him of his hearing. His descent into self-pity is checked once he realizes there are other people worse off, and he sets out to secretly help them resolve their dilemmas. The fourth film version of the 1914 play "The Silent Voice," bolstered by plenty of performances in Lee's inimitable style, co-stars Dorothy Malone, Joanne Dru, William Demarest. 115 min. Widescreen (Enhanced); Soundtrack: English Dolby Digital mono.
I Died A Thousand Times [DVD](1955) DVD
Jack Palance takes the Humphrey Bogart role in this exciting reworking of "High Sierra." He's Mad Dog Earle, a ruthless killer recently released from prison who plots a daring robbery while falling in love with a young, handicapped woman in a mountain retreat. Shelley Winters, Lee Marvin, Lon Chaney, Jr., Earl Holliman, Lori Nelson co-star. 109 min. Widescreen (Enhanced); Soundtrack: English Dolby Digital Surround stereo.
Creature From The Black Lagoon: Complete Legacy Collection [DVD] DVD
This two-disc set collecting the cinematic adventures of everybody's favorite scary--and scaly--monster opens with "Creature from the Black Lagoon" (1954), in which a team of scientists in the Amazon is hunted by a water-breathing, half-human gillman. Richard Carlson, Julia Adams star. Not in 3D. Next, it's the "Revenge of the Creature" (1955), as he torments tourists at a Florida aquarium. John Agar, Lori Nelson star. Then, "The Creature Walks Among Us" (1956) after scientists mutate the beastie so that he can live on land--and terrorize San Francisco. Jeff Morrow, Rex Reason star. 4 hrs. total. Widescreen; Soundtrack: English Dolby Digital mono; Subtitles: English (SDH); audio commentary; documentary; photo gallery; theatrical trailers.
Hot Rod Girl [DVD](1956) DVD
In an attempt to curb teenage drag racing in his town, policeman Chuck Connors sets up a supervised racetrack, but the accidental death of a boy threatens the lives of all involved in this early "teen drama." Mark Andrews, Lori Nelson star. 79 min.
Poverty Row Studio Collection: American International, Vol. 1 [DVD] DVD
Two-disc set includes "The Fast and the Furious" (1954), "Hot Rod Girl," "A Bucket of Blood," and "Attack of the Giant Leeches."
Mohawk [DVD](1956) DVD
A peace-loving federal agent (Scott Brady) and an Indian woman (Rita Gam) work together to prevent a range war, only to fall in love in the process and face rejection from both their peoples. Western drama also stars Neville Brand, Lori Nelson. 80 min. Standard; Soundtrack: English. Plays All Regions.
The Great American Western, Vol. 8 [DVD] DVD
Susan Hayward is an Oklahoma cattleman's daughter out for revenge against the oil company she blames for her father's death, in "Tulsa" (1949). With Robert Preston. A peace-loving federal agent (Scott Brady) and an Indian woman (Rita Gam) work together to prevent a range war and fall in love in the process, in "Mohawk" (1956). Dennis Hopper is a gunslinger in 1848 California whose murder trial tests the newly formed state's justice system, in "The Young Land" (1959). Dan O'Herlihy, Yvonne Craig co-star. Finally, a young man must stop a con artist out to cheat his uncle, in "Fair Play" (1972). Paul Ford, Paul Glaser star. 5 1/2 hrs. total. Standard; Soundtrack: English.
Dean Martin & Jerry Lewis Collection, Vol. 2 [DVD] DVD
After learning he doesn't have radiation poisoning as originally thought, country boy Jerry Lewis must keep up the pretense so he and doctor Dean Martin can get an all-expenses paid trip to New York, in "Living It Up" (1954), with Janet Leigh. Next, an aspiring barber (Lewis) poses as a 12-year-old boy and latches onto a travelling music teacher (Martin) while trying to evade a nasty jewel thief (Raymond Burr), in "You're Never Too Young" (1955). Diana Lynn co-stars. When struggling comic book artist Martin begins basing his scripts on the dreams of roommate Lewis, the duo winds up getting involved with beautiful ladies and secret agents, in "Artists and Models" (1955). With Shirley MacLaine, Eva Gabor. Jerry is a millionaire who becomes "Pardners" (1956) with ranch foreman Dean to try and fight a group of ornery cowpokes starting trouble in a Western town. And, in the duo's last film together, it's "Hollywood Or Bust" (1956) for star-struck Jerry, who travels cross-country to get into show business and meet idol Anita Ekberg, picking up hitchhiker Dean along the way. 8 hrs. total on three discs. Standard; Soundtrack: English Dolby Digital mono.
Outlaw's Son [DVD](1957) DVD
Years after abandoning his young son to become an outlaw, Nate returns to town with the law on his tail. As he hides from the authorities, he is reluctantly given shelter by the relative who has taken his boy in. Can Nate stay out of jail and somehow be forgiven by the child he left behind in order to pursue a life of crime? Dane Clark, Ben Cooper, Lori Nelson star. AKA: "Gambling Man," "His Father's Son." 88 min. Widescreen (Enhanced); Soundtrack: English.
The Pied Piper Of Hamelin [DVD](1957) DVD
Based on the fabulous Grimm fairy tale, this wonderful family favorite stars Van Johnson as the Pied Piper, who entices a village of children into a magical mountain after their townspeople fail to keep a promise. With Jim Backus, Claude Rains, and Kay Starr. 90 min. Standard; Soundtrack: English Dolby Digital stereo. Plays All Regions.
Untamed Youth [DVD](1957) DVD
Shining "a searing spotlight on teen-age cons in a House of Correction!," this drive-in classic stars Mamie Van Doren and Lori Nelson as young runaway sisters who get picked up for hitchhiking and are sent to a prison farm that uses the female inmates as slave labor for a local businessman's cotton-picking operation. With John Russell, Don Burnett, and '50s rocker Eddie

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The Naked Monster (2005) with John Agar, Robert Clarke, Brinke Stevens, and Paul Marco
Mom, Can I Keep Her? (1998) with Gil Gerard, Kevin Dobson, Alana Stewart, Brinke Stevens, and Mary Woronov
Secret Sins of the Father (1994) with Beau Bridges, Lloyd Bridges, and Lee Purcell
Outlaw's Son (1957) with Dane Clark, Ben Cooper, and Ellen Drew
Untamed Youth (1957) with Mamie Van Doren, John Russell, and Yvonne Lime
The Pied Piper of Hamelin (1957) with Van Johnson and Kay Starr
The Day the World Ended (1956) with Richard Denning, Adele Jergens, and Mike Connors
Hot Rod Girl (1956) with John Smith, Chuck Connors, and Frank Gorshin
Pardners (1956) with Dean Martin, Jerry Lewis, and Lon Chaney Jr.
Mohawk (1956) with Scott Brady and Allison Hayes
I Died a Thousand Times (1955) with Jack Palance, Shelley Winters, and Lon Chaney Jr.
Ma and Pa Kettle at Waikiki (1955) with Marjorie Main, Percy Kilbride, and Russell Johnson
Revenge of the Creature (1955) with John Agar and John Bromfield
Sincerely Yours (1955) with Liberace, Joanne Dru, Dorothy Malone, William Demarest, Lurene Tuttle, and Guy Williams
Underwater! (1955) with Jane Russell, Gilbert Roland, and Richard Egan
Destry (1954) with Audie Murphy and Mari Blanchard
All American (1953) with Tony Curtis, Richard Long, Stuart Whitman, and Mamie Van Doren
Tumbleweed (1953) with Audie Murphy, Russell Johnson, and Lee Van Cleef
Walking My Baby Back Home (1953) with Donald O'Connor
All I Desire (1953) with Barbara Stanwyck, Richard Carlson, and Richard Long
Francis Goes to West Point (1952) with Donald O'Connor
Ma and Pa Kettle at the Fair (1952) with Marjorie Main, Percy Kilbride, and James Best
Bend of the River (1952) with James Stewart, Julie Adams, and Rock Hudson

How to Marry a Millionaire, 1957-1959 syndicated TV series. Nelson portrayed Greta Hanson from 1957-1958. Also starring in this series were Merry Anders, Barbara Eden, and Lisa Gaye

Family Affair, episode Goodbye, Mrs. Beasley, originally aired February 18, 1971
Armstrong Circle Theatre, episode Days of Confusion: The Story of College Admissions, originally aired September 13, 1961
Whispering Smith, episode Double Edge, originally aired August 7, 1961
Bachelor Father, episode Drop That Calorie, originally aired July 6, 1961
Laramie, episode Trigger Point, originally aired May 16, 1961
The Tab Hunter Show, episode Sultan for a Day, originally aired March 5, 1961
Dante, episode Dial D for Dante, originally aired January 16, 1961
The Tab Hunter Show, episode My Darling Teacher, originally aired November 27, 1960
Lock Up, episode The Seventh Hour, originally aired November 5, 1960
Tales of Wells Fargo, episode Relay Station, originally aired December 28, 1959
Sugarfoot, episode The Gaucho, originally aired December 22, 1959
General Electric Theater, episode Night Club, originally aired October 11, 1959
The Millionaire, episode Millionaire Lorraine Daggett, originally aired September 29, 1959
Wagon Train, episode The Steele Family, originally aired June 17, 1959
The Texan, episode The Man Hater, originally aired June 15, 1959
Wanted: Dead or Alive, episode Bounty for a Bride, originally aired April 4, 1959
The 20th Century-Fox Hour, episode Threat to a Happy Ending, originally aired May 29, 1957
Climax!, episode Strange Hostage, originally aired December 20, 1956
Climax!, episode Fear Strikes Out, originally aired August 18, 1955
It's a Great Life, episode Foster Father, originally aired March 8, 1955
It's a Great Life, episode Winter Sports, originally aired February 22, 1955

lori nelson film now showing

Watch Lori Nelson in a 1955 episode of Pantomime Quiz.
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