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Elinor Donahue is a versatile and seasoned actress. Her ability to play both serious roles like her stint with Dr. Quinn, Medine Woman and goofy, comedic ones like what she did for the TV shows Get A Life! and The New Adventures of Beans Baxter is testament to this. Her career began when she was a young child, her first role when she was only five.

Elinor Donahue was born on April 19, 1937. Elinor has four sons: Brian, Peter, James and Chris Ackerman. She also has two step-children: Susan Peterson and Stephen Ackerman. She was married to her former spouse Harry Ackerman from 1961 until his death in 1991. She had another husband, a man named Richard Smith, whom she divorced. Her current husband, Lou Genevrino, has been married to her since 1999.

Her first big movie roll was in 1943's "Mister Big" where she played a character named "Muggsy." In a recipe book Elinor has written, In the Kitchen with Elinor Donahue, where she accompanies little stories with recipes, she recalls this about playing "Muggsy:"

"My First Big Film Mister Big was a big thrill for me to be in because I had a major crush on its star Donald O'Connor. But at the same time, I took the peparations casually, as though this was a perfectly normal and natural thing I was doing.

"The only time I broke down was when Donald bounced onto the set and said his line, 'Hi, Muggsy!' Seeing him in the flesh was just too much for my little six-year-old self. So I cried.

"One funny thing about that movie was that my nickname back home in Tacoma was Muggsy, and no one in California knew it. Talk about coincidence."

Her most current project (October 2003) was performing in the A.R. Gurney play, Love Letters with Efrem Zimbalist, Jr. in Arroyo Grande, California in the distinguished Clark Center for the Performing Arts.

Below is a complete filmography provided by the always wonderful website IMDB.com:

  • Andy Griffith Show Reunion: Back to Mayberry, The (2003) (TV) (archive footage): Elinore 'Ellie' Walker
  • Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman: The Heart Within (2001) (TV): Rebecca Quinn
  • "Shake, Rattle and Roll: An American Love Story" (1999) (mini) TV Series
  • "Invaders, The" (1995) (mini) TV Series: Norma Winters
  • "Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman" (1993) TV Series: Rebecca Quinn (1993-1998)
  • " Eek! the Cat" (1992) TV Series (voice): Additional Voices
  • Freddy's Dead: The Final Nightmare (1991): Orphanage Woman
  • "Get a Life!" (1990) TV Series: Gladys Peterson
  • Pretty Woman (1990): Bridget
  • "Generations" (1989) TV Series: Sylvia Furth (1989)
  • "Santa Barbara" (1984) TV Series: Dr. Anderson (1989)
  • Never Say Goodbye (1988) (TV): Laura Donovan
  • "New Adventures of Beans Baxter, The" (1987) TV Series: Susan Baxter
  • "Days of Our Lives" (1965) TV Series: Kate Honeycutt (1984-1986)
  • Hear Me Cry (1984) (TV): Mrs. Parsons
  • Going Berserk (1983): Margaret Anderson
  • High School U.S.A. (1983) (TV): Mrs. Franklin
  • Condominium (1980) (TV): Audrey Ames
  • "Doctors' Private Lives" (1979) (mini) TV Series .... Mona Welk
  • No Margin for Error (1978) (TV)
  • "Please Stand By" (1978) TV Series: Carol Lambert
  • Doctors' Private Lives (1978) (TV): Mona Wise
  • Father Knows Best: Home for Christmas (1977) (TV): Betty Anderson
  • "Mulligan's Stew" (1977) TV Series: Jane Mulligan
  • Mulligan's Stew (1977) (TV): Jane Mulligan
  • "Odd Couple, The" (1970) TV Series: Miriam Welby (1972-1974)
  • Gidget Gets Married (1972) (TV): Medley Blaine
  • In Name Only (1969) (TV): Esther Garrity
  • "Many Happy Returns" (1964) TV Series: Joan Randall (1964-1965)
  • "Andy Griffith Show, The" (1960) TV Series: Elinore 'Ellie' Walker (1960-1961)
  • Girls Town (1959): Mary Lee Morgan
  • "Father Knows Best" (1954) TV Series: Betty 'Princess' Anderson
  • Love Is Better Than Ever (1952): Pattie Marie Levoy
  • Her First Romance (1951): Lucille Stewart
  • My Blue Heaven (1950) (uncredited): Bratty Autograph Seeker
  • Tea for Two (1950) (uncredited): Lynne
  • Happy Years, The (1950) (uncredited): Connie Brown
  • Singing Guns (1950): Mike Murphy's Kid
  • Arkansas Swing (1949) (as Mary Eleanor Donahue): Toni MacGregor
  • Old-Fashioned Girl, An (1948) (as Mary Eleanor Donahue): Maud Shaw
  • Tenth Avenue Angel (1948) (uncredited): Cynthia
  • Three Daring Daughters (1948) (as Mary Eleanor Donahue): Alix Morgan
  • Unfinished Dance, The (1947) (as Mary Eleanor Donahue): Josie
  • Winter Wonderland (1947) (as Mary Eleanor Donahue): Betty Wheeler
  • Little Miss Big (1946) (uncredited) ... aka Baxter's Millions (1946) (UK)
  • And Now Tomorrow (1944) (uncredited): Janice, age 4
  • Bowery to Broadway (1944) (uncredited): Bessie Jo as a Child
  • Honeymoon Lodge (1943) (as Mary Elinor Donahue): Janie Thomas
  • Mister Big (1943) (as Mary Eleanor Donahue): Muggsy
  • Girl's Town (1942)

Notable TV Guest Appearances:

  • "Ellen" (1994) playing "Delores" in episode: "The Tape" (episode # 3.25) 14 May 1996
  • "Friends" (1994) playing "Aunt Lillian" in episode: "The One Where Nana Dies Twice" (episode # 1.7) 10 November 1994
  • "Coach" (1989) playing "Lorraine" in episode: "Luthario" (episode # 5.18) 9 March 1993
  • "Coach" (1989) playing "Lorraine" in episode: "Burden of the Burleighs" (episode # 5.16) 16 February 1993
  • "Herman's Head" (1991) playing "Mrs. Fitzer" in episode: "A Charlie Brown Fitzer" (episode # 2.13) 20 December 1992
  • "Murder, She Wrote" (1984) playing "Connie Lewis" in episode: "The Szechuan Dragon" (episode # 6.21) 6 May 1990
  • "Golden Girls, The" (1985) playing "Katherine" in episode: "Stan Takes a Wife" (episode # 4.10) 7 January 1989
  • "Riptide" (1984) playing "Elaine Warwick" in episode: "Echoes" (episode # 3.22) 22 August 1986
  • "Our Time" (1985) playing "Herself" (episode # 1.4) 17 August 1985
  • "Happy Days" (1974) playing "Mrs. Broderick" in episode: "School Dazed" (episode # 11.16) 12 July 1984
  • "Hotel" (1983) playing "Louise" in episode: "Deceptions" (episode # 1.9) 30 November 1983
  • " Dukes of Hazzard, The" (1979) playing "Federal Agent" in episode: "The Sound of Music - Hazzard Style" (episode # 4.15) 8 January 1982
  • "Fantasy Island" (1978) playing "Miss Barrens" in episode: "Romance Times Three/Night of the Tormented Soul" (episode # 5.9) 5 December 1981
  • " Love Boat, The" (1977) playing "Mrs. van Buren" in episode: "He's My Brother/Zeke and Zelda/Teach Me Tonight" (episode # 5.11) 5 December 1981
  • "Mork and Mindy" (1978) playing "Dr. Joni Lincoln" in episode: "Mindy and Mork" (episode # 3.21) 7 May 1981
  • "Fantasy Island" (1978) playing "Madge Nolan" in episode: "Delphine/The Unkillable" (episode # 4.20) 11 April 1981
  • "CHiPs" (1977) playing "Herself" (uncredited) in episode: "The Great 5K Star Race and Boulder Wrap Party: Part 2" (episode # 4.6) 7 December 1980
  • "Barnaby Jones" (1973) playing "Judy Corbett" in episode: "The Silent Accuser" (episode # 8.20) 13 March 1980
  • "Fantasy Island" (1978) playing "Mrs. Marson" in episode: "Rogues to Riches/Stark Terror" (episode # 3.16) 19 January 1980
  • "Love Boat, The" (1977) playing "Rowena" in episode: "A Funny Valentine/Wallflower, The/Home Is Not a Home" (episode # 2.23) 3 March 1979
  • "Diff'rent Strokes" (1978) playing "Diane Sloane" in episode: "The Woman" (episode # 1.12) 19 January 1979
  • "Police Story" (1973) in episode: "No Margin for Error" (episode # 5.6) 30 April 1978
  • "Police Story" (1973) playing "Camille Tackleberry" in episode: "Ice Time" (episode # 4.20) 8 March 1977
  • "S.W.A.T." (1975) playing "Marjorie Kemp" in episode: "Lessons in Fear" (episode # 2.18) 31 January 1976
  • "Petrocelli" (1974) playing "Joan Hiller" in episode: "Vengeance in White" (episode # 1.19) 5 March 1975
  • "Rookies, The" (1972) in episode: "Blue Christmas" (episode # 3.13) 16 December 1974
  • "Police Woman" (1974/I) in episode: "Warning: All Wives..." (episode # 1.3) 27 September 1974
  • " Flying Nun, The" (1967) playing "Dr. Jennifer Ethrington" in episode: "My Sister, the Sister" (episode # 1.21) 25 January 1968
  • "Star Trek" (1966) playing "Comissioner Nancy Hedford" in episode: "Metamorphosis" (episode # 2.9) 10 November 1967
  • "Man Called Shenandoah, A" (1965) playing "Julie Wade" in episode: "Town on Fire" (episode # 1.8) 8 November 1965
  • "Eleventh Hour, The" (1962) playing "Melanie" in episode: "The Secret in the Stone" (episode # 2.22) 26 February 1964
  • "Virginian, The" (1962) playing "Carole Cole" in episode: "Siege" (episode # 2.13) 18 December 1963
  • "Redigo" (1963) playing "Joanie-Mae Kilpatrick" in episode: "Hostage Hero Riding" (episode # 1.12) 10 December 1963
  • "Dr. Kildare" (1961) playing "Sharon Calloway" in episode: "Ship's Doctor" (episode # 2.27) 18 April 1963
  • "Have Gun - Will Travel" (1957) playing "Letty Mae" in episode: "The Burning Tree" (episode # 6.22) 9 February 1963
  • "77 Sunset Strip" (1958/I) playing "Laura Holt" in episode: "Scream Softly, Dear" (episode # 5.15) 18 January 1963
  • "General Electric Theater" (1953) playing "Carol Madsen" in episode: "A Voice on the Phone" (episode # 10.9) 19 November 1961
  • "United States Steel Hour, The" (1953) playing "Fran Crowell" in episode: "Delayed Honeymoon" (episode # 9.1) 6 September 1961
  • "Brothers Brannagan, The" (1960) playing "Kate Warren" in episode: "Duet" (episode # 1.5) 22 October 1960
  • "Ford Television Theatre, The" (1948) playing "Katherine" in episode: "Sheila" (episode # 4.34) 24 May 1956
  • "Letter to Loretta" (1953) playing "Janey" in episode: "Week-End in Winnetka" (episode # 3.2) 4 September 1955
  • "Letter to Loretta" (1953) playing "Debbie Waring" in episode: "He Always Comes Home" (episode # 2.32) 10 April 1955
  • "Schlitz Playhouse of Stars" (1951) in episode: "I Want to Be a Star" (episode # 1.51) 19 September 1952

Sources: www.imdb.com, www.geometry.net

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