Born November, 12, 1929, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
The debutante daughter of an industrialist and a photographer's model, Kelly was a stunning natural beauty, and a Hollywood darling of the early 1950's. She studied at the American Academy of Dramatic Art in New York--her dramatic debut was in the play Torch Bearers, written by her uncle George Kelly.
Kelly's first film was Fourteen Hours in 1951. In 1952, she took her first lead role in the MGM production High Noon. In 1954, Kelly caught the eye of the eccentric director Alfred Hitchcock who cast her in Rear Window (1954) opposite Jimmy Stewart, and then again in To Catch A Thief (1955) with Cary Grant. For details about Hitchcock's fascination with the actress, see Vertigo.
In a perfect instance of life imitating art (or is is the other way around?) Kelly met Prince Rainier Grimaldi of Monaco at the Cannes Film Festival of 1954 (her future husband) and in 1955, made a film called The Swan in which her character marries a crown prince.
Sure enough, Kelly became the Royal Consort of Monaco in 1956. She ended her acting career subsequent to the marriage, and devoted herself to philanthropy and child-rearing.
She died of injuries suffered during a car accident on September 13, 1982.