Graphics and biographical information were provided by Niels Petter Solberg

Anna-Lisa was born in Oslo, Norway in 1933 as Anne-Lise Ruud. As a child, she became involved in the children's theater her brother ran, inspiring her to become an actress.

She first came to the U.S. as an au-pair for a family in California. She visited the local theaters and took acting lessons before she was discovered by the agent Walther Kohner during a local production of "Lorca's Blood Wedding."

Anna-Lisa soon landed a role in network television. Her break came in 1958 when she was cast in an episode of "Sugarfoot," a television western produced by Warner Brothers. Those were the days when the "adult westerns" were in vogue, and Warner Brothers proceeded to hand her prominent roles that year in episodes of other western series it produced, "Maverick," "Bronco," and "Cheyenne."

That studio also cast her in 1960 in two of its popular non-western series, "77 Sunset Strip" and "Surfside Six."

At right, she appears with "77 Sunset Strip" star Ephrem Zimbalist Jr. in an episode titled, "Spark of Freedom," set in Budapest.

  The highpoint of Anna-Lisa's career came when she appeared as a regular in a series. Though a relative novice in television, she bagged the role of Nora Travers in the Four Star production of "Black Saddles." That series ran from January to September of 1959 on NBC and October, 1959 to September, 1960 on ABC. She played opposite Peter Breck, with whom she is seen at left. Breck portrayed a lawyer and former gunslinger in the New Mexico Territory, and Anna-Lisa's role was that of the owner of the Marathon Hotel where the lawyer was headquartered.

Columbia Pictures was impressed with Anna-Lisa's work and gave her starring roles in two films, "Have Rocket Will Travel" (1959) and "12 to the Moon" (1960). At right is Anna-Lisa on a poster for the latter picture. Neither film proved to advance her career. She continued doing TV work until the early 1970s.

Among the series in which Anna-Lisa appeared were "Day in Court," "Gunsmoke," "Bonanza," "Lloyd Bridges Show," "Westinghouse Playhouse," "The Millionaire," "Garrison's Gorilla," "Laramie," "Islanders," "Room for One More," "True," "Eleventh Hour," "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea," "Death Valley Days," "Man From U.N.C.L.E.," "That Girl," "Run For Your Life," and "Ben Casey."


Anna-Lisa toured the U.S. with various stage productions, working alongside Bob Cummings in "Tunnel of Love," Victor Bruno in "Tartuffe," John Carradine in "Merchant of Venice" and Constance Bennett and Joan Fountaine in "Marriage-Go-Around."


The actress returned to Norway in 1974. She was employed at Oslo Central Theater at the time she went into semi-retirement in 1995.

Her recent appearances in the stage productions of "Stepping Out" and "Invisible Town" have introduced her to a new generation of theater-goers.

She lives in Oslo, Norway's capital and the city in which she was born. At left is a photograph of her taken in 2000 by Niels Petter Solberg.


Copyright 2000, Roger M. Grace. All rights reserved.