Frank Sinatra Jr. 1944 – 2016

Frank Sinatra Jr: born 10 January 1944, Jersey City New Jersey; died 16 March 2016, Daytona Beach Florida (heart attack); composer for The Beach Girls and The Monster (1965); kidnapped in December 1963 by Barry Keenan, best friend of Dean Torrence of Jan and Dean.

Tab Hunter 1931 – 2018

Tab Hunter (11 July 1931 – 9 July 2018) “Hunter hid his relationships with championship skater Ronnie Robertson and actor Tony Perkins; publicly, he was romantically linked to co-star Natalie Wood and French actress Etchika Choreau.” LA Times.

Dorothy Malone 1924 – 2018

Dorothy Malone: born Dorothy Eloise Maloney, 29 January 1924, Chicago Illinois; died 19 January 2018, Dallas Texas. Credited roles 1945 – 1992, including Beach Party (1963) and Peyton Place (TV 1964–1968).

original Ski Party jacket

Aron Kincaid (1940 – 2011), who appeared in many of the popular beach party pics of the 1960s, died Jan. 6 in Los Angeles of heart failure. He was 70.

perky young actress

Deborah Walley, the perky young actress who succeeded Sandra Dee as the “girl midget” in the first “Gidget” sequel, starred in several of the 1960s beach frolic movies and became a writer and producer aiding children and Native Americans, has died. She was 57.

Gardner McKay 1932 – 2001

Gardner McKay (born 1932 New York New York; died 2001 Oahu, Hawaii); artist-turned-model-turned-actor-turned-writer; star of I Sailed To Tahiti With An All Girl Crew (1968) – his final acting credit — “My life is defined by what I’ve quit.”

Keenan Wynn (1916 – 1986)

Keenan Wynn (1916 – 1986): villain Harvey Huntington Honeywagon in Bikini Beach (1964). Veteran character player from the stage, a prolific staple at MGM in the 1940s and 50s, mostly as pals to the male stars of the films in which he appeared, and later memorable as the absurdly earnest Army man who gives Peter…

Martha Hyer, 1924 – 2014

Martha Hyer, born 10 August 1924, died 31 May 2014; ‘Vivian Clements’ in Bikini Beach (1964) ~ “a horrible juvenile comedy in which surfers fight cyclists and convert their elders to the pleasures of the bronzed physique” NY Times. Obituary…

Morey Amsterdam, circa 1912 – 1995

Morey Amsterdam (14 December circa 1912 – 28 October 1996): played Cappy in Beach Party (1963) – manager of surfer hangout ‘Big Daddy’s’ (Vincent Price played the eponymous owner); then promoted to proprietor of ‘Cappy’s Place’ in Muscle Beach Party (1964); venues inspired by the original Cafe Frankenstein at Laguna Beach. “The versatile comedian Morey…

Bob Cummings (1910 – 1990)

Robert “Bob” Cummings: born 9 June 1910, Joplin, Missouri; died 2 December 1990, Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, California; on screen 1935 – 1986. Beach Party (1963) ‘Professor Sutwell’ Gidget Grows Up (TV Movie 1969) ‘Russ Lawrence.’

Ahna, not Anna

Ahna Capri, who began as a child actress in the 1950s and had a career as a sexy starlet through the 1970s, died on August 19 at age 65 from injuries sustained in an automobile accident in Los Angeles ~ August 24, 2010 | The Hollywood Reporter.

Surf’s Up?

Cliff Robertson as Malibu Beach surf bum ‘Kahuna’ in Gidget (1959). Novelist Frederick Kohner based the character on surfer Terry ‘Tubesteak’ Tracy.

Shary Marshall 1935 – 2014

Shary Marshall: born Sharlayne Adell Williamson 29 March 1935, Monmouth Oregon; died Shari Santilli 31 May 2014, Laguna Hills California. Moving to Hollywood after winning a beauty contest, she had two TV credits in 1958 as ‘Shary Layne’, before appearing uncredited in Gidget (1959).

Gidget’s last movie

Ms. Dee‘s last feature film was “The Dunwich Horror” (1970). Washington Post.

Cliff Robertson 1923 – 2011

Cliff Roberston (born 9 September 1923; died 10 September 2011) as Burt Vail aka ‘The Big Kahuna’ in Gidget (1959). When the movie was shot in August 1958, Robertson was almost 45 years old, Sandra Dee was 16, and James Darren was 22.

Diane is wild

Diane Varsi, who was nominated for an Academy Award for her first film, “Peyton Place,” died on Thursday in Los Angeles. She was 54 years old and lived in Los Angeles. Miss Varsi played Allison MacKenzie in “Peyton Place,” the 1957 melodrama based on the novel by Grace Metalious. She walked out on a contract…

Martin Milner 1931 – 2015

Martin Milner: born 28 December 1931, Detroit Michigan; died 6 September 2015, Carlsbad California. Select credits: Sex Kittens Go to College (1960), Gidget (TV 1965): S1E3 The Great Kahuna – ‘Kahuna’, Ski Fever (1966), Valley of the Dolls (1967), Adam 12 (TV 1968-75). 

Doug McClure 1935 – 1996

Doug McClure (11 May 1935, Glendale Los Angeles – 5 February 1995, Sherman Oaks Los Angeles). First credit: South Pacific (1957) – pilot in hospital. Selected credits: Gidget (1959) – Waikiki; The Lively Set (1964) – Chuck Manning. Final credit: One West Waikiki (TV 1996) – died during filming from lung cancer.

slightly spicy beach movies

Walt Disney told Annette Funicello that he had been approached by American International Pictures about her making a beach movie. He said he thought it sounded like “good clean fun,” but asked her not to expose her navel. She readily agreed. She and Mr. Avalon ultimately starred in a series of beach movies together, beginning…

Batgirl in a big bikini

Yvonne Craig, actor and dancer, born 16 May 1937; died 17 August 2015. The dark-haired beauty, a native of Taylorville, Ill., began her theatrical career at age 17 as the youngest member of the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo. She traveled the U.S. and was with the troupe for three years when she was discovered…

Peter Deuel (1940 – 1971)

Pete Duel’s death on 31 December, 1971, at the age of 31 brought to an end an acting career that carried promise and potential.

Michael A. Hoey

Michael A. Hoey: screenwriter (Live A Little Love A Little), dialogue coach (Tickle Me, Sergeant Dead Head, Dr. Goldfoot and the Bikini Machine, Spinout, Speedway); producer (Palm Springs Weekend), writer-director (The Navy vs. the Night Monsters (1966); born 8 September 1934, London, England; died 17 August 2014, San Clemente, California, USA. Obituary below.

Noreen Corcoran (1943 – 2016)

Noreen Corcoran, who starred as the teenager adopted by her uncle (John Forsythe) on the 1950s-’60s sitcom Bachelor Father, has died. She was 72. On Bachelor Father, which aired on CBS, NBC and ABC from 1957-62, the cute Corcoran starred as Kelly, who comes to live at age 13 with her well-to-do uncle Bentley Gregg…

Aron Kincaid (1940 – 2011)

Aron Kincaid, who appeared in many of the popular beach party pics of the 1960s, died Jan. 6 in Los Angeles of heart failure. He was 70. Kincaid was featured in “The Girls on the Beach,” “Beach Ball,” “Ski Party,” “The Ghost in the Invisible Bikini” and “Dr. Goldfoot and the Bikini Machine.” At one…

Deborah Walley (1941 – 2001)

Deborah Walley; Actress, 57. SEDONA, Ariz., May 14, 2001 — Deborah Walley, who appeared in a series of 1960s beach movies, died on Thursday at her home. She was 57. The cause was esophageal cancer, said Julie Parrish, a friend. Ms. Walley appeared in 15 feature films. Her parts included the title role in the…

Meredith MacRae (1944 – 2000)

LOS ANGELES, July 15— Meredith MacRae, who played Billie Jo Bradley in the 1960’s sitcom “Petticoat Junction,” died Friday from brain cancer. She was 56. … Ms. MacRae was born in Houston to a Hollywood family: her father was the late actor-singer Gordon MacRae, who played the lovesick cowboy Curly in “Oklahoma!” Her mother is…

Jody McCrea (1934 – 2009)

Beginning with “Beach Party,” the 1963 American International Pictures comedy starring Annette Funicello and Frankie Avalon, Jody McCrea appeared in “Muscle Beach Party,” “Bikini Beach” “Pajama Party,” “Beach Blanket Bingo” and “How to Stuff a Wild Bikini.” McCrea’s character in the beach movies, which his brother Peter likened to being the equivalent of court jester…