A Tribute to Katherine Perry
Born Katherine Perry in New York City on January 5, 1897, a Ziegfeld Follies show girl as Katherine was a natural for a screen career, despite a limited talent as an actress.
Katherine came to director D.W. Griffith’s attention and with her mother visited his Mamaroneck Studios on Long Island.
However, Katherine was disappointed when her participation was limited to that of of one of the attractive young ladies partying with Lowell Sherman. Griffith did, however, give her one close-up, and that may have lead to Katherine’s making her first credited screen performance as Miss Hollander in Lewis J. Selznick’s production of Sooner or Later (1920).
The leading man in Sooner or Later (1920) was Owen Moore (Mary Pickford’s first husband). Katherine did not play opposite him, but in her second film with Owen Moore, The Chicken in the Case (1921) she was his leading lady. Katherine married Owen Moore on July 16, 1921, and embarked on a domestic life that was as comic as the farces in which the two appeared on screen.
Owen Moore was brother to Matt and Tom, all of whom were from Ireland. Aside from The Chicken in the Case (1921), Katherine co-starred with Owen in A Divorce of Conscience (1921) and Love Is an Awful Thing (1922) for Lewis J. Selznick, and Husbands for Rent (1927) at Warner Bros.
Katherine starred opposite Mat Moore in The First Year (1926) and Early to Wed (1926) released by Fox. Katherine’s first talkie was Side Street (1929), a crime drama released by RKO starring all three of the Moore brothers, but with Tom rather than Owen as her romantic interest. After Side Street (1929) there were no more featured roles. Owen Moore died at the couple’s Beverly Hills home on June 9, 1939 of a heart attack at the age of 52. Katherine continued to act on screen through 1951, but her roles were always uncredited bits such as that of a socialite in My Man Godfrey (1936). Toward the end of her life Katherine admitted that she didn’t think she did anything very well, but she was happy all the time. Katherine died at the Motion Picture Country Hospital on October 14, 1983. She was 86 years old, and had aged from a beautiful brunette to a gray-haired old lady with a risqué sense of humor.
Katherine appeared in a total of thirty-six films from 1920-1936, and most of them were credited as Kathryn Perry.