Brenda Joyce
Born Betty Graftina Leabo
February 25, 1917 (1917-02-25) (age 101)
Excelsior Springs, Missouri, U.S.[1][2]
Died July 4, 2009(2009-07-04) (aged 92)
Santa Monica, California, U.S.
Occupation Actress
Years active 1939–1949
Spouse Owen Ward (1941–1949)

Brenda Joyce (February 25, 1917[3] – July 4, 2009[4]) was an American film actress. She was born as Betty Graftina Leabo in Excelsior Springs, Missouri, although family and friends referred to her as Graftina.


Although she appeared in many B-movies of the 1940s, she was cast as Maris Hanover in the 1942 film, Little Tokyo, U.S.A., she is best-remembered as the seventh actress to play Jane in the Tarzan series of films. She succeeded Maureen O'Sullivan in the series and appeared in the role five times.

Her first four appearances as Jane were opposite Johnny Weissmuller. However, her last performance as Jane, in Tarzan's Magic Fountain (1949), was with Lex Barker as Tarzan. Joyce and Karla Schramm from the silent era were the only two actresses to play Jane opposite two different actors playing Tarzan.

She retired from acting in 1949.

Personal lifeEdit

She was married to Owen Ward from 1941 until their divorce in 1949; they had three children, Pamela Ann, Timothy Owen and Beth Victoria.


Joyce died on July 4, 2009 in a nursing home in Santa Monica, California.[4] She was entombed at Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery.


External linksEdit