6 April 1918, Berlin, Germany
Ingeborg Greta Katerina Marie-Rose Klinckerfuss
Berlin-born actress Kaaren Verne (sometimes billed as Karen) was born Ingeborg Catherine Marie Rose Klinkerfuss in 1918. Originally a stage actress and member of the Berlin State Theatre, she and her first husband, Arthur Young, fled their homeland in 1938. She began her career in England as a model and eventually signed with 20th Century-Fox for f...
Berlin-born actress Kaaren Verne (sometimes billed as Karen) was born Ingeborg Catherine Marie Rose Klinkerfuss in 1918. Originally a stage actress and member of the Berlin State Theatre, she and her first husband, Arthur Young, fled their homeland in 1938. She began her career in England as a model and eventually signed with 20th Century-Fox for films. No movies came out of this agreement, however, but her screen test interested Fox, making her debut with the drama Ten Days in Paris (1940) starring Rex Harrison.Jumping on the popular foreign bandwagon during WWII along with other European hopefuls, this highly attractive blonde turned in strong lead and second lead roles throughout the early 1940s. An MGM contract led to a couple of films (Sky Murder (1940) and The Wild Man of Borneo (1941)). A freelance contract with Warner Bros. stabilized things a bit. The Teutonic actress initially intended to "Americanize" her stage name to the more acceptable Catherine Young, but her vehement anti-Nazi sentiment made for more publicity and stronger audience identification, so the name of Kaaren Verne quickly returned. She appeared frequently as mysterious ladies in both propaganda films such as Underground (1941) and whodunit mysteries, keeping Walter Pidgeon's Nick Carter and Basil Rathbone's Sherlock Holmes on their toes. For the most part she remained in the "B" movie realm.Kaaren had a couple of fine chances for stardom. She shared a touching scene with Robert Cummings in the classic soaper Kings Row (1942) and appeared opposite Humphrey Bogart as a romantic interest in All Through the Night (1942), a combination gangster/spy film. One of Bogie's lesser known movies, the best thing it did for Kaaren was introduce her to one of her co-stars Peter Lorre. Divorcing first husband Arthur Young, by whom she had a son, Alastair, she quickly married Lorre in 1945 and put her career on hold for a time. The turbulent union was rather brief, however, lasting only five years before separating in 1950 and finally divorcing two years later. During the course of that marriage, she attempted suicide more than once. Upon their divorce, she made herself available again for films but the wind had already been kicked out of her career sails. Kaaren found some sporadic TV work but they were minor and few and far between. Her looks grew hard and coarse over time and she moved wisely into small, drab character parts, usually as a world-weary matron. One of her last movie roles was the minor part of the hausfrau and mother to Gila Golan in the all-star epic picture Ship of Fools (1965).Kaaren, who had married a third time, died quite suddenly in her Hollywood home during Christmas week in 1967, looking much older than her 49 years. Her death is somewhat of a mystery. Some sources say she committed suicide; others claim she died of a heart ailment. She was buried at Calvary Cemetery in Minnesota and was survived by her third husband, theatre and film critic/historian James Powers, and an adopted daughter.
Kaaren Verne's FILMOGRAPHY
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