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Gail Russell was a very beautiful dark haired actress from the 1940s to the 1960s. She signed with Paramount Pictures in 1942 and, at the age of 19, appeared in her first film, Henry Aldrich Gets Glamour.

She was in some of the more notable Paramount films of the mid 1940s, including The Uninvited, Our Hearts Were Young and Gay, Salty O'Rourke, The Unseen and Calcutta. She also co-starred with John Wayne in both Angel and the Badman and Wake of the Red Witch.

She married actor Guy Madison in 1949, but the next year, because it had become well known that she was an alcoholic (she had started drinking on the set of The Uninvited to ease her terrible stage fright), Paramount did not renew her contract.

She quit making movies in 1951, but her alcoholism led to divorce from Madison in 1954. With help from old friends like John Wayne she made a comeback in 1956, but it didn't help much.

Her drinking led to several arrests. Her most notable arrest was on July 5, 1957, when she was photographed by a Los Angeles Times photographer after she drove her convertible into the front of a coffee shop on Beverly Blvd. After failing a sobriety test, Russell was arrested and charged with driving under the influence.

On August 26, 1961, Russell was found dead in her apartment, surrounded by empty liquor bottles and looking much older than her 36 years. She died from liver damage, but was also found to have been suffering from malnutrition at the time of her death.
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