Jean Wallace and Franchot Tone Visit Encino

From the Phoebe Beach Archive

UPDATE March 28, 2021: Thanks to commenter JC, it turns out the notes on the back of these images is incorrect. After Mrs. Swanky and I stared at many many images of Barbara Payton and Tone’s then wife Jean Wallace, we concluded these pictures are not scandalous, but actually he and his then wife, not the future wife.

They look very much alike, and you’ll notice in these pictures she has on two different outfits, but the same jewelry and her hair is parted on a different side. One picture also seems to show her having nail polish and the others not and her lei is different. He is in the same shirt. These pictures are of two different nights.

It is the smile that is the key for us, and the lack of a beauty mark.

Barbara’s smile.
Barbara’s smile shows no gum and she has a distinct beauty mark.
Jean’s smile showing gum.
Jean again showing gum.

Original post:

At this time in 1946, Barbara was married to her second husband John Lee Payton Sr. and her Hollywood career hadn’t started. Maybe this is a 1950 image, but by 1950 Donn had either sold the house or it was on the market for a couple of years. Very unlikely. She would marry Franchot Tone, who was 22 years her senior, in 1950, and then a string of other men. Her life was the subject of several books. Here Wiki: Barbara Payton

Her notoriety as a luminous, fun-loving party girl in the Hollywood club scene caught the attention of William Goetz, an executive of Universal Studios. In January 1949, he signed her at age 21 to a contract with a starting salary of $100 per week.

They are looking pretty friendly. I think that’s Louella Parsons on the left.

Franchot Tone was an actor and producer who was nominated for an Oscar for his role in the 1935 Mutiny on the Bounty. That movie with Clark Gable may have introduced him to Donn Beach, Clark’s neighbor. His Wiki: Franchot Tone

3 thoughts on “Jean Wallace and Franchot Tone Visit Encino

  • March 28, 2021 at 12:43 am

    This is not Barbara Payton but Franchot Tones wife Jean Wallace

    • March 28, 2021 at 2:06 pm

      That would make more sense for 1946. The two women look a lot alike, but all these pictures are labeled as Barbara Payton.

    • March 28, 2021 at 7:00 pm

      After a lot of staring at pictures, we agree, it is jean and the notes are wrong. Thanks!


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