×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Elois Jenssen

Oscar-winning costume designer

Oscar-winning costume designer Elois Jenssen died Feb. 14 at the Motion Picture Home in Woodland Hills, Calif. She was 81.

In addition to her lengthy career producing costumes for film and television productions, Jenssen was an active leader in both the Costume Designers Guild and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.

Born in Palo Alto, Calif., she attended the Westlake School for Girls but transferred to the Parsons School of Design in Paris at age 13 to study fashion design. When the outbreak of WWII interrupted those studies, she and her family returned to California, where Jenssen enrolled at the Chouinard Art Institute.

When she graduated Jenssen found a position with producer Hunt Stromberg’s new company as an assistant to costume designer Natalie Visart. She succeeded Visart as Stromberg’s top designer three years later and received her first screen credit for her work in “Dishonored Lady,” which starred Hedy Lamarr.

After Stromberg closed his production office, Jenssen freelanced for a period, during which she again designed costumes for Lamarr in “Let’s Live A Little.” At the end of 1948, she became one of five designers recruited for the massive job of producing the costumes for the Cecil B. DeMille epic “Samson and Delilah.” Jenssen, Edith Head, Dorothy Jeakins, Gile Steele and Gwen Wakeling all won Oscars for the production.

Following work on several additional films, Jenssen moved into television, where she first produced the designs for Ann Sothern in “Private Secretary,” then worked for several years with Lucille Ball on “I Love Lucy.” Her other television credits include designs for shows starring Julie Newmar (“My Living Doll”) and Eleanor Parker (“Bracken’s World”).

In 1982 she received her second Academy Award nomination for her work on the Disney sci-fi film “Tron.”

Jenssen was predeceased by her husband, Thomas J. Andre Jr. She is survived by her stepson, five stepgrandchildren, six stepgreat-grandchildren and several cousins.

A memorial service and reception will be held 2 p.m. April 3 at the Motion Picture & Television Fund Country House.

More Scene

  • Variety TV Summit Europe

    Variety TV Summit Europe Coming to London on June 13

    Variety’s TV Summit Europe will coincide with London Tech Week this year, returning to the city on June 13. The international conference will be held at the Royal Lancaster and is co-produced by global events company Informa’s KNect365 division, the world’s largest business-to-business organizer. The one-day summit will focus on the intersection of content and [...]

  • David Furnish, Bryce Dallas Howard, Taron

    'Rocketman': Paramount Previews Footage of Elton John Biopic

    “Rocketman” is ready for lift off. Paramount Pictures threw a cocktail party Monday night to preview 15 minutes of the upcoming Elton John biopic, set for release on May 31, at the Troubadour in Los Angeles, the legendary rock club where John made his U.S. debut nearly 50 years ago. The footage featured pieces of [...]

  • The CalArts REDCAT Gala 2019 Honoring

    Pixar's Pete Docter Honored at CalArts REDCAT Gala

    Pixar’s Pete Docter reminisced about his days as a student at CalArts on Saturday night at the 2019 CalArts REDCAT Gala, where he received the Distinguished Alumni Award. For the wide-eyed boy from Minnesota, where life was more routine, attending CalArts “was a free-for-all. It was eye-opening in a lot of ways,” he recalled. “But [...]

  • Sasha Pieterse, Eli Brown, Sydney Park

    'Pretty Little Liars' Spinoff Unexpectedly Coincides With College Admissions Scandal

    It was a case of art imitating life at Saturday night’s Hollywood premiere of “The Perfectionists” — Freeform’s “Pretty Little Liars” spinoff about a scandal involving college students striving for excellence by any means necessary. The TV show’s debut was coincidently preceded by a real-life college scandal involving Hollywood celebrities who allegedly didn’t let a [...]

  • Keira Knightley'The Aftermath' film screening, Arrivals,

    Keira Knightley Talks 'Aftermath,' Alexander Skarsgård and Another Itchy Wardrobe

    The reigning queen of period pieces, Keira Knightley, knows a thing or two about historical clothing. “Lining. Lining is always important,” the Oscar-nominated actress playfully advised on Wednesday at the premiere of her post-WWII drama “Aftermath.” “If you get a lot of itchy stuff always put lining in it. I have learned that from having [...]

  • Priyanka Chopra

    Priyanka Chopra to Speak at the 2019 Women in the World Summit (EXCLUSIVE)

    Priyanka Chopra has just been added to the star-studded list of speakers at the 2019 Women in the World Summit. Chopra, who will be interviewed on stage by Women in the World founder Tina Brown, will discuss her career as an activist and entrepreneur. Recently, the “Baywatch” actress joined forces with Serena Williams in investing [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content