July 26, 1917
Grand Rapids, Michigan, United States
|Spouse(s)||David Brian (1949-1993; his death)|
Lorna Gray (born July 26, 1917) is an American film actress known for her comic roles, and later as a villainess. She is best known for her roles in Columbia Pictures comedy shorts and Republic Pictures serials. She has been known as Adrian Booth since 1945.
She was born Virginia Pound in Grand Rapids, Michigan. After her father's millinery business was a victim of the Great Depression, the family split up. Before appearing in films, Gray sang with a group in Cleveland called Ben Yost's Varsity Coeds, who performed primarily in movie theaters before the movie began.
As a Columbia contract player she appeared in the studio's shorts and serials, including Flying G-Men (starring Robert Paige), Pest from the West (starring Buster Keaton), and You Nazty Spy! (starring The Three Stooges). When her Columbia contract lapsed, she found work at Monogram Pictures, where she worked with action star Frankie Darro.
In her Paramount films, such as Hold 'Em Navy, she was credited as Virginia Pound, but she was given the name Lorna Gray by Columbia and she used it from 1938 until 1945, when she left Columbia and moved to Republic Pictures. She appeared as Lorna Gray in Republic's Federal Operator 99, but subsequently adopted the name Adrian Booth, which she has used ever since.
At Republic, she often received co-star billing in Westerns, the only woman other than Dale Evans to be billed so highly at that studio.
In 1945, shortly after signing a contract with Republic Pictures, she and the stunt performer Ruel F. Taylor were arrested for "suspicion of possessing marijuana in Los Angeles." A $1,000 bail set her free. She was later exonerated after Taylor testified at his preliminary hearing that Gray had not used the marijuana and was not aware of it.
She married actor David Brian July 19, 1949, and retired from motion pictures. As Adrian Booth, she was awarded the Golden Boot Award in 1998 and has been attending film festivals into her nineties. She appeared as a guest at the annual Three Stooges convention held in Fort Washington, Pennsylvania, on April 30, 2011.
- Adventure in Sahara (1938)
- Red River Range (1938)
- Pest from the West (1939)
- The Man They Could Not Hang (1939)
- Oily to Bed, Oily to Rise (1939)
- Three Sappy People (1939)
- You Nazty Spy! (1940)
- Rockin' thru the Rockies (1940)
- Deadwood Dick (1940)
- Convicted Woman (1940)
- Father Steps Out (1941)
- Perils of Nyoka (1942)
- O, My Darling Clementine (1943)
- So Proudly We Hail! (1943)
- Captain America (1944)
- Federal Operator 99 (1945)
- Adventures of Kitty O'Day (1945)
- Dakota (1945)
- Daughter of Don Q (1946)
- Lightnin' in the Forest (1948)
- The Plunderers (1948)
- The Last Bandit (1949)
- The Savage Horde (1950)
- Oh! Susanna (1951)
- Neill, Frank (February 9, 1950). "In Hollywood". Long Beach Independent. California, Long Beach. International News Service. p. 24. Retrieved May 20, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.
- Magers, Boyd; Fitzgerald, Michael G. (2004). Westerns Women: Interviews with 50 Leading Ladies of Movie and Television Westerns from the 1930s to the 1960s. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland. pp. 45–52. ISBN 9780786420285.
- "Adrian Booth biography". Republic Pictures 75th. Retrieved May 2, 2014.
- "Lorna Gray/Adrian Booth". B-Westerns. Retrieved May 2, 2014.
- "Yo, Adrian! Adrian Booth at the Memphis Film Festival" The Blood-shot Eye (2007)
- "Virginia Pound, 1936 Bud Queen, Arrested On Marijuana Charge". Benton Harbor News Palladium. March 6, 1945. p. 1. Retrieved January 22, 2016.
- "Actress Exonerated in Marijuana Case". The Bakersfield Californian. California, Bakersfield. Associated Press. March 7, 1945. p. 1. Retrieved May 20, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.
- Fidler, Jimmie (October 2, 1949). "In Hollywood With Jimmie Fidler". Louisiana, Monroe. Monroe Morning World. p. 4. Retrieved May 20, 2016 – via Newspapers.com.
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