Janet Leigh was born in Merced, California, on July 6, 1927. Her first movie was The Romance of Rosy Ridge in 1947. She was cast in several pictures in the late 1940s and early 1950s. In the mid-1960s, she began playing in television movies and minor pictures. She died October 3, 2004 in Beverly Hills, California.
Leigh attended grammar school and high school in Stockton, California, bypassing several classes and graduating at age 15. She studied music and psychology in the College of the Pacific. She was married twice in a young age, first in 1942 to John Carlyle (annulled), after which to Stanley Reames in 1946 (they divorced in 1948). Leigh was found by retired MGM actress Norma Shearer who saw an image of her at a ski resort and urged her to get a screen test. Leigh got an MGM contract, and her first movie was The Romance of Rosy Ridge (1947), with Van Johnson.
Leigh was cast in ingenue roles in several pictures in the late 1940s and early 1950s and worked with many top stars of the time. Leigh and Curtis appeared in five movies together, most notably Houdini (1953). In 1962, she divorced Curtis and wedded director Robert Brandt. Yet, she’s famous for her shower scene in Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho (1960)—one of the most frightening moments ever committed to film.