30 Really Interesting Facts To Know About Dina Merrill


Nedenia Marjorie Hutton, famous by her name Dina Merrill, an actress, heiress, socialite, businesswoman, and philanthropist, made her debut on the stage in the play “The Mermaid Singing” in 1945. Here are some facts about the American actress:

  1. She was born Nedenia Marjorie Hutton on December 29, 1923, in New York City.
  2. She adopted her stage name Dina Merrill, on the advice of her half sister’s husband. She took after the name of Charles Edward Merrill, the stockbroker.
  3. She was the only child of Marjorie Merriweather Post and her second husband Edward Francis Hutton, the Wall Street stockbroker. She is the granddaughter of C.W. Post, the founder of Postum Cereal Co.
  4. She was successful student, who excelled on the other filed too. She represented her school in the field hockey and was also the president of the dramatic club.
  5. Merrill attended George Washington University, Washington D.C, before enrolling at American Academy of Dramatic Arts, New York City.
  6. Merrill’s first job was at age 17, on a radio show hosted by a friend of her mother’s the patrician actress of ‘Topper’ fame, who had helped look after Dina on the nanny’s days off.
  7. She had earned million dollars out of her father’s investments even before she became an actress but still supported herself by modeling clothes for Vogue at $ 10 an hour.
  8. In an interview she said ‘It’s fascinating to lead someone else’s life for a while.’ She wished she could take the bus, ‘like the others kids’ instead of being driven by a family chauffeur.
  9. Merrill was married to Stanley M. Rumbough Jr. from 1946 to 1966. She turned down a seven-year film contract and a picture with Clark Gable.
  10. She later married Oscar winning actor Cliff Robertson, before divorcing him in 1986 to marry producer Ted Hartley in 1989. She bore four children, two of which predeceased her.
  11. On September 08, 1973, she lost her son David Post Rumbough, in a boating accident. The boat capsized in choppy seas in Gardiner’s Bay off eastern Long Island.
  12. In 1991, she and her husband Ted Hartley merged their company, Pavilion Communications with RKO to form RKO Pictures, which owns the intellectual property of the RKO Radio Picture movies studio.
  13. She apprenticed in summer stock in the early 1940s, before making her debut on the Broadway with ‘The Mermaids Singing’ in 1945.
  14. Merrill made her film debut in 1957 with ‘Desk Set,’ after spending a decade of theatre role and TV appearances. She also raised her children during this intermittent period.
  15. Some of her more noticeable role came with ‘Operation Petticoat’ ‘Butterfield 8’ and ‘The Young Savages.’ They were hardly challenging, playing some version of model wife.
  16. She also had a thriving career as a guest star on television series, including ‘Bonanza,’ ‘Mission Impossible’ and ‘Murder, She Wrote.’ She is an actress made for TV movies.
  17. She was believed to have been marketed as a replacement to Grace Kelly in 1960s. She was proclaimed as ‘Hollywood’s new Grace Kelly.’
  18. Merrill was on the cover of Life magazine on January 11, 1960, as an actress and socialist. She received Women’s International Center Living Legacy Award in 1994.
  19. Merrill returned to Broadways with ‘Angel Street’ in 1975, playing the wife of a husband who is driving her mad. She also portrayed the manager of the Russian Ballet in a well-received musical play ‘On Your Toes,’ in 1983.
  20. Merrill was appointed to the Board of Trustee of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, by the President. She was also the trustee of the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Centre, and vice president of the New York City Mission Society.
  21. In the year 1980, she joined the board of directors of her father’s Wall Street investment firm, E.F. Hutton & Co.
  22. Merrill grew up in luxury, spending up to six months a year on the Sea Cloud, the family yacht. The Dukes and the Duchess of Windsor were among the guests. The yacht has been described as a floating palace, equipped with fireplaces, marble bathrooms, a barber shop and a wine cellar.
  23. She spent her winters growing up at Mar-A-Lago, the largest and most elaborate estate in Palm Beach, Florida. The estate was rescued from condemnation in 1985, by Donald J. Trump and converted in to a private club and residence.
  24. Merrill is an active lobbyist for women’s health issues. She has devoted much of her time working for the disadvantaged, particularly for the New York City Mission Society.
  25. When one of her children was diagnosed with diabetes, she became one of the founding members of the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation, which is dedicated to diabetic research.
  26. In June 1973, she was named the ‘Mother of the Year’ by the American Diabetes Association, at a convention.
  27. Merrill was also a director of Project Orbis, a flying ophthalmological hospital which teaches advanced eye care and performs surgical techniques around the world.
  28. She was awarded the ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ from the ‘American Academy of Dramatic Arts’ in April 2005.
  29. On May 22, 2017, Merrill died at her home in East Hampton, New York. She was 93 years old and had been suffering from Lewy Body Dementia.
  30. Merrill has to her credit over twenty five feature films and more than 100 television appearances apart from Broadway roles.
  31. Dina Merrill Net Worth: $5 Billion

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