At the peak of her career Debbie was truly America's sweetheart, the archtypical girl next door.  Born in Texas, the family moved to Burbank where, at sixteen, Debbie won a beauty contest and the career began.  Small parts, then bigger parts. Gene Kelly opposed her casting in his 1952 film, SINGIN' IN THE RAIN, but she got the part and acquitted herself admirably against those dancing stalwarts, Gene Kelly and Donald O'Connor, link.  A highpoint came with her best actress nomination for The UNSINKABLE MOLLY BROWN.  As her movie career waned she created a nightclub act and has become a regular headliner in Vegas and all major cities.  In '73 she appeared on Broadway in the successful revival of IRENE, and in '83 WOMAN OF THE YEAR.  Three unsuccessful marriages, two great kids, her film career seems to be reawakening.  Besides several Broadway appearances Debbie has done 49 films and now, recent screen roles include Oliver Stone's HEAVEN AND EARTH and the title role in MOTHER.