Yvette Mimieux was an admired American television and film actress. During her career, she received three Golden Globe Award nominations for her talented performances. In 1992, this blonde actress retired from an illustrious career. Let’s get to know the woman a little better.
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Early life and family
The actress was born Yvette Carmen Mimieux in Los Angeles County, California USA, on 8 January 1942. Her father was Frenchman René Mimieux and her mother, Maria Montemayor, was of Mexican heritage. Yvette has two siblings – a brother whose name is not known and a sister named Gloria. It is assumed that Yvette had a normal childhood, but no details are known about how she grew up.
About Yvette’s education, nothing is known, but she lived within shouting distance of Hollywood, and was a model and beauty contest winner before she signed a contract with MGM (Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc) in 1959, aged 17, skipping college.
Her career actually kicked-off in 1958, but her appearances went uncredited until the following year, with television roles in shows such as ‘One Step Beyond’ and ‘Yancy Derringer’. In 1960, Yvette got her first taste of film acting, in ‘Platinum High School’, which was produced by Albert Zugsmith, then got the role of Weena in ‘The Time Machine’, the film based on H. G. Wells’s 1895 novel of the same name, which helped to “put her on the map”.
Next, she starred in the teen comedy ‘Where the Boys Are’, another film in which she got to show off with her acting prowess. The film itself was not a very big success, but it still helped Yvette to scoop up new and exciting roles, building her career. In 1961, the blonde rising star was given a role in ‘Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse’, but that film wasn’t a success either, and she wasn’t helped when set to be part of a remake of ‘The Clock’, but which never happened.
In 1962 Yvette had the central role of a mentally disabled girl in ‘Light at the Piazza’, starring next to George Hamilton and Olivia de Havilland, and while the film didn’t do well, she was still admired by many.
She had roles in various films after this, not all of them hits – ‘The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm’ didn’t do very well, ‘Diamond Head’ did better, and ‘Toys in the Attic’ was much more of a success. During her contract with MGM, Yvette was a guest star in two episodes of ‘Dr Kildare’ – her performance as a woman suffering from epilepsy was acclaimed by viewers, coincidentally she was also the first person to show her navel on American television.
In 1964, she played a cameo role as herself in ‘Looking for Love’. Her next role came in 1965 in ‘Joy in the Morning’, in which Yvette played Richard Chamberlain’s love interest. After leaving MGM, her career didn’t come to a stop, as she worked on a Western film by Fox, ‘The Reward’ with Max Von Sydow in 1965.
Then she starred in ‘Monkeys, Go Home’ in 1967, as well as ‘The Caper of the Golden Bulls’. Also in that year, she starred in ‘The Desperate Hours’, then in 1968 she worked with MGM again, this time with Rod Taylor in the action film, ‘Dark of the Sun’. Yvette showed off her narrative skills with the Hollywood Bowl’s classical music concert. She also starred in the 1969 film, ‘Three in the Attic’, and in the same year in the acclaimed film, ‘The Picasso Summer’ with Albert Finney.
The following year, Yvette was the female star of the action film, ‘The Delta Factor’, then had a leading role in the Aaron Spelling TV series aired between 1970 and 1971, ‘The Most Deadly Game’.
It was at this time that she also had a business selling Haitian products, while also studying archaeology, often travelling and certainly a very busy woman. That wasn’t the end of her acting career, however, as Yvette starred in television films ‘Death Takes a Holiday’ and ‘Black Noon’. The next year, she was back on screen, this time as an air hostess in ‘Skyjacked’ and in 1973, she starred in Fox’s science-fiction film, ‘The Neptune Factor’.
However, at this time she became disenchanted with the roles offered to her and other female actors. She was quoted as saying that there is nothing complex about the female characters of films – they’re either boring or sex objects.
She even sued her agent after she claimed he took her money but didn’t provide her with film work. By then, she had been writing for many years – short stories and journalism pieces. She also wrote a thriller that was submitted by Aaron Spelling and Leonard Goldberg to ABC, and was made into a television film – ‘Hit Lady’ – in 1974.
In 1975 she continued her acting career, playing the second wife of Rudolph Valentino in ‘The Legend of Valentino’, and also starred in a Canadian thriller, ‘Journey into Fear’. In later years, she had roles in ‘Jackson County Jail’, ‘Snowbeast’, ‘Devil Dog: The Hound of Hell’, ‘Disaster on the Coastliner’ and ‘Ransom for Alice!’.
In 1979, Yvette was part of Walt Disney Productions’ film, ‘The Black Hole’, and was the lead actor in ‘Circle of Power’ in 1981. She was also in ‘Forbidden Love’, ‘Night Partners’ and ‘The Love Boat’ between 1982 and 1983.
‘Obsessive Love’ is a 1984 film that she co-wrote, co-produced, as well as co-starred in. Then she had a lead role in the short-lived television series “Berrenger’s’ and a supporting role in ‘The Fifth Missile’. Yvette was also a guest star in TV film ‘Perry Mason: The Case of the Desperate Deception’ and 1992’s ‘Lady Boss’, which was her last film. She retired from acting in this year. According to ‘Rotten Tomatoes’, Yvette dedicated most of her time to her husband from 1972, but she still built on her career.
Hobbies, favourite things and interesting facts
Yvette loved keeping busy with her writing, dancing and musical passions. She was a well-rounded woman with many interests outside acting. With her third husband, Howard Ruby, she owned a resort in Mexico which many celebrities visited to relax and have vacations.
Yvette kept her private life something that people guessed about for the most part. Her first marriage, to Evan Engber, was actually a secret for almost two years. They married on 19 December in 1959, but later divorced. In 1972 she married Stanley Dohen, who was a film director, but this marriage also ended in divorce in 1985. Yvette married her third husband, Howard Ruby, who was the founder of Oakwood Worldwide, in 1986, and they’re apparently still together.
- Hair colour: Blonde
- Eye colour: Blue
- Height: 5 feet 5inches (1.63 m)
- Weight: 119 lbs (54 kgs)
- Vital Statistics: 33-24-33
- Shoe Size: Unknown
- Bra Size: 36B
- Star Sign: Capricorn
Yvette’s net worth is estimated to be something around $5 million, accumulated from acting as well as her business ventures.