Ava's First Leading Lady Role

Several year's before Ava was loaned out by MGM to major studios, she worked on a Monogram production as a leading lady. It was her first starring role and the first time she saw her name on a marquee, something she would never forget.

Ghost on the Loose starred Bela Lugosi and featured the East Side Kids, who were featured in Monogram films from 1940-45.

The film took just seven days to shoot, (February 8-15, 1943), and it received fair to good reviews. The Film Daily, on June 14, 1943 gave it a good review and had this to say about Ava, “The leading lady Ava Gardner, is as lovely - and in a few short scenes - seems as talented as almost any of the younger crop of glamour gals in town.”

Below are some photos from the museum's archives.

Ghost on the Loose, 1943.


Ghost on the Loose, 1943


Ghost on the Loose, 1943, Ava's name on the marquee.


Ghost on the Loose, East Side Kids, write notes to their co-star Ava.


Logo for the Ava Gardner Museum in Smithfield, NC.




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