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John Derek

Male 1926 - 1998  (71 years)    Has 2 ancestors and 2 descendants in this family tree.

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  • Name John Derek 
    Birth 12 Aug 1926  Holywood Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Death 22 May 1998 
    Person ID I302875  Geneagraphie
    Last Modified 3 Apr 2002 

    Father Lawson Harris   d. Yes, date unknown 
    Mother Dolores Johnson   d. Yes, date unknown 
    Family ID F121469  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 1 Patti Behrs 
    Marriage 1951 
    Divorce 1957 
     1. Russel Derek
     2. Sean Derek
    Family ID F121468  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart
    Last Modified 3 Apr 2002 

    Family 2 Living 
    Family ID F121465  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart
    Last Modified 17 Sep 2001 

    Family 3 Linda Evans,   b. 18 Nov 1942, Hartford Co., Connecticut, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Marriage 1968 
    Divorce 1974 
    Family ID F87688  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart
    Last Modified 3 Apr 2002 

    Family 4 Living 
    Family ID F121466  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart
    Last Modified 17 Sep 2001 

  • Photos Photos (Log in)Photos (Log in)

  • Notes 
    • film actor, director and still photographer

      Derek made his name in Hollywood as the good-looking hero of a string of B-movies and as a character actor in such films as The Ten Commandments, in which he played Joshua to Charlton Heston's Moses.
      But he gained new fame in 1974 when he whisked little-known 18-year-old starlet Mary Cathleen Collins, 34 years his junior, off to Germany and divorced his wife, actress Linda Evans, so he could marry her.
      The two had met on the Greek island of Mykonos, where Bo Derek was a 16-year-old high school dropout working under the stage name Bo Shane.
      In 1979, she soared to fame as the object of actor Dudley Moore's sexual fantasies in 10, a film directed by Blake Edwards. It was so popular that the cornrows she wore in her hair briefly became a national fad.
      The success of his wife gave John Derek a reputation as a Svengali able to turn beautiful women overnight into Hollywood stars. But he could not help Bo Derek stay white-hot.
      Ephraim Katz, author of The Film Encyclopedia, a respected reference book, wrote that after 10, Derek featured his young wife "in a succession of awfully scripted movies he directed and photographed himself, the only redeeming feature of which was the loveliness of her chiseled face and naked body."
      Her career entered a long slump.
      He was put under contract to filmmaker David O. Selznick while still a teen-ager but did not make his screen debut until I'll Be Seeing You in 1945.
      His dark good looks made him a hit, especially with teen-age girls, and he took part in another two dozen films over the next 10 years.
      But when he became disenchanted with acting and the roles he was getting, he turned to photography, then to directing low-budget films.
      Before his unions with Evans and Bo Derek, he was married to French starlet Patti Behrs and Swiss actress Ursula Andress.

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