Dolores Del Rio

Dolores Del Rio


Also Known As
Dolores Asunsolo, Lolita Dolores Martinez Asunsolo Lopez Negrette
Birth Place
Durango, MX
August 03, 1905
April 11, 1983
Cause of Death
Liver Failure


Easily one of the most beautiful women of her era and one of the most gorgeous people ever to make it to the ranks of film stardom. Del Rio's career in the 1920s and 30s unfortunately suffered from too many exotic, two-dimensional roles designed with Hollywood's cliched ideas of ethnic minorities in mind. Her best-remembered film from this period is "Flying Down to Rio" (1933), which par...

Photos & Videos

Wonder Bar - Scenes Stills
Journey into Fear - Publicity Stills


Easily one of the most beautiful women of her era and one of the most gorgeous people ever to make it to the ranks of film stardom. Del Rio's career in the 1920s and 30s unfortunately suffered from too many exotic, two-dimensional roles designed with Hollywood's cliched ideas of ethnic minorities in mind. Her best-remembered film from this period is "Flying Down to Rio" (1933), which partnered Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers for the first time. One of her more interesting parts was her last American lead, in "Journey Into Fear" (1942), set up by and co-starring Del Rio's then paramour, Orson Welles. It took a return to the stage and screen in her native Mexico (where she won that country's equivalent of a Best Actress Oscar four times and was lauded as "the first lady of Mexican theater") and later Hollywood character parts (e.g., in John Ford's "The Fugitive" 1947 and his "Cheyenne Autumn" 1964) for her talent to be fully displayed.

Life Events


Family fled to Mexico City to escape Pancho Villa


Began taking dancing lessons from noted dancer Felipa Lopez (date approximate)


Painter friend Adolfo Best Maugard brought honeymooning director Edwin Carewe and his wife Mary Aiken and married film stars Claire Windsor and Bert Lytell to visit Del Rios; Carewe offered Del Rio a Hollywood contract


Arrived in Hollywood August 27


Film acting debut in "Joanna"


Selected as one of 13 WAMPAS (Western Association of Motion Picture Advertisers) "Baby Stars" of the year


After small parts in four films, played first important lead in "What Price Glory?"


Voice first heard on film in part-talkie, "Evangeline"


Starred in film, "Girl of the Rio", which drew formal protest from the Mexican government for portraying the Mexican system of justice as "a reflection of who could pay the most for the verdict of their liking"


Beauty ranked second only to Garbo's by famed photographer Baron George Hoyningen-Huene in August issue of Photoplay magazine


Journeyed to England to star in "Accused"


Last Hollywood lead, "Journey Into Fear"


Returned to Mexico; signed contract giving her a percentage of the profits from her films


One-shot return to Hollywood at John Ford's request; played opposite Henry Fonda in Ford's "The Fugitive"


Debuted onstage in New England summer stock touring production of "Anastasia"


Made US TV debut in "Old Spanish Custom", an episode of the "Schlitz Playhouse of Stars"


Debuted on Mexican stage in Oscar Wilde's "Lady Windemere's Fan", which she had filmed in Buenos Aires in 1948


Returned to Hollywood; played Elvis Presley's mother in "Flaming Star"


Appeared in first American film in nearly a dozen years, opposite Anthony Quinn in "The Children of Sanchez"; also her last

Photo Collections

Wonder Bar - Scenes Stills
Here are a few scene stills from Wonder Bar (1934), starring Al Jolson and Kay Francis.
Journey into Fear - Publicity Stills
Here are some Publicity Stills from Journey into Fear (1943). Publicity stills were specially-posed photos, usually taken off the set, for purposes of publicity or reference for promotional artwork.


Movie Clip

Journey Into Fear (1943) -- (Movie Clip) A Crazy Man Just Shot At Me From the climax on the ledge of a Black Sea hotel, Graham (Joseph Cotten) chased by an assassin and spy (Jack Moss, Eustace Wyatt), his wife (Ruth Warrick) downstairs, Turkish officer Haki (Orson Welles, in a scene he never quite took credit for directing) rescuing, in Journey Into Fear, 1943.
Journey Into Fear (1943) -- (Movie Clip) I Like The Turks Hustled onto a steamer out of Istanbul by officials who insist he’s in danger, American engineer Graham (Joseph Cotten), narrating from a letter to his wife, with acquaintances on board, singer Josette (Dolores del Rio), Kuvetli (Edgar Barrier) and Haller (Eustace Wyatt), in Journey Into Fear, 1943.
In Caliente (1935) -- (Movie Clip) Get Me Some Gay And Frisky Zippy opening, screenplay by Jerry Wald and Julius Epstein, story Ralph Block and Warren Duff, Pat O’Brien and Edward Everett Horton as partners in a New York entertainment rag, chewing through staff (Florence Fair, James Donlan etc.) and evading probably treacherous Glenda Farrell as Clara, in In Caliente, 1935, starring Dolores Del Rio.
In Caliente (1935) -- (Movie Clip) You're Open For Engagements? Edward Everett Horton as New York showbiz mag publisher Brandon has been chasing Dolores Del Rio as dancer Rita around a Tijuana resort, because she’s his angle to get his partner (Pat O’Brien) to ditch his gold-digging fianceè back home, with much sexy posing and smiling, Lloyd Bacon directing, in In Caliente, 1935.
In Caliente (1935) -- (Movie Clip) Muchacha All of 70 minutes into the picture, Busby Berkeley staging, Lloyd Bacon directing, a reprise of an extended Harry Warren-Al Dubin composition, Dolores Del Rio as Rita finally sings and dances, with support from Phil Regan, love interest Pat O’Brien watching with pal Edward Everett Horton, in Warner Bros.’ In Caliente, 1935.
Fugitive, The (1947) -- (Movie Clip) First Told In The Bible Opening narration by Ward Bond, John Ford directing from Dudley Nichols’ sanitized adaptation of Graham Greene’s novel, Henry Fonda the title character, with Dolores Del Rio, clear from the start that Ford’s chief interest is Gabriel Figueroa’s virtuosic cinematography, from The Fugitive, 1947.
Bird Of Paradise (1932) -- (Movie Clip) You Don't Suppose They're Cannibals? Cracking nautical opening from King Vidor, presumably shot near Catalina, because the scheduled shoot in Hawaii was plagued with bad weather, leading man Joel McCrea at the bow, John Halliday the captain Mac, from Bird Of Paradise, 1932, also starring Dolores del Rio.
Bird Of Paradise (1932) -- (Movie Clip) You Little Devil! Yacht crewman Johnny (Joel McCrea) is just having a smoke when he hears a swimmer nearby, turns out it’s island princess Luana (Dolores del Rio), who’s shown significant interest in him, director King Vidor going light on the swimwear, in the pre-Code Bird Of Paradise, 1932.
Bird Of Paradise (1932) -- (Movie Clip) She's Taboo Dolores del Rio as princess Luana is the center of attention at the dance on the first evening of the yacht crew’s visit to her nameless South Sea island, Joel McCrea as Johnny, whom she rescued from a shark earlier that day, but trouble brews, in David O. Selznick’s Bird Of Paradise, 1932.
Fugitive, The (1947) -- (Movie Clip) I Baptize Thee Director John Ford’s artful second movement, as a Mexican village, from which all priests have been driven away, assembles for ceremonies officiated by Henry Fonda, himself hiding from the law, Dolores Del Rio the grateful mother, Gabriel Figueroa’s camera still the main feature, in The Fugitive, 1947.
Flying Down To Rio (1933) -- (Movie Clip) Music Makes Me Franklin Pangborne can’t wait to fire bandleader Gene Raymond from his Miami gig when he shows up just in time, with accordion player Fred Astaire, for Ginger Rogers’ number by Vincent Youmans, Gus Kahn and Edward Eliscu, Dolores del Rio in the house, early in Flying Down To Rio, 1933.
Madame Du Barry (1934) -- (Movie Clip) Let The Stag Chase Me Louis XV (Reginald Owen) scolds courtiers (Ferdinand Gottschalk as Lebel, Henry O'Neill the prime minister, Dorothy Tree, Virginia Sale, Camille Rovelle the daughters) then speculates about Richelieu (Osgood Perkins) and the title character (Dolores Del Rio), opening Madame Du Barry, 1934.