( b. Apr 20, 1924 Leyden, NETHERLANDS - d. Dec 05, 2008 Los Angeles, California, USA ) Female
Nina Foch was a veteran actress from Hollywood's film noir era of the 1940s who became a widely respected acting coach and teacher of directors. Foch taught "Directing the Actor" for 40 years at USC's School of Cinematic Arts. She also offered the class for years at the American Film Institute. Her students have included accomplished directors, including Randal Kleiser, Amy Heckerling, Ed Zwick and Marshall Herskovitz.
Foch began her career as an actress whose most memorable work was in the B-movie classic "My Name Is Julia Ross" (1945), directed by Joseph H. Lewis. Foch played a young woman who takes a job as secretary for a wealthy family and becomes ensnared in a plot to cover up a murder.
Her standout acting inspired a recent UCLA Film & Television Archive series celebrating Columbia's "noir girls" of the 1940s. In addition to "Julia Ross," the series featured films such as Fritz Lang's "Human Desire" and Rudolph Mate's "The Dark Past," which starred Foch opposite William Holden and Lee J. Cobb.
Foch was born Nina Consuelo Maud Fock in Leyden, Netherlands. She later moved to New York with her mother and enrolled at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. She also studied Method acting with Lee Strasberg and Stella Adler. She changed her name to Foch when her movie career began in 1941 at Warner Bros. She worked under contract at several major studios, including Columbia, MGM, Universal, 20th Century Fox and United Artists.
Her film credits include "A Song to Remember" (1945), "An American in Paris" (1951), "Scaramouche" (1952) and "The Ten Commandments" (1956). She earned an Oscar nomination for best supporting actress in "Executive Suite" (1954).
Foch appeared on Broadway, including the 1947 hit John Loves Mary. She briefly tried directing, serving as assistant director to George Stevens on The Diary of Anne Frank (1959), but turned to television acting when it became clear to her that the time was not ripe for a female director.
Her lengthy television credits include "Prescription: Murder" (1968), which launched the popular "Columbo" detective series starring Peter Falk, the miniseries "War and Remembrance" (1988) and episodes of "Gunsmoke," "Bonanza," "The Mod Squad," "Dharma & Greg" and "NCIS." She earned an Emmy nomination for best supporting actress in a drama series in 1980 for her work on an episode of "Lou Grant."
Source: The Los Angeles Times obituary