Margaret "Talli" Tallichet

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Margaret Lewis "Talli" Wyler (Tallichet)

Also Known As: "Weyler", "Talli"
Birthplace: Dallas, Dallas County, Texas, United States
Death: May 03, 1991 (77)
Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California, United States (Cancer)
Place of Burial: Cremated, remains were scattered at sea.
Immediate Family:

Daughter of David Compton Tallichet, Sr. and Margaret E. Tallichet
Wife of William Wyler
Mother of Private; Private; Private; Private and Private
Sister of David Compton Tallichet, Jr.

Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Margaret "Talli" Tallichet

Margaret "Talli" Tallichet (March 13, 1914 – May 3, 1991) was an American actress and longtime wife of movie director William Wyler. Her best-known leading role was with Peter Lorre in the film noir Stranger on the Third Floor (1940).


Margaret Lewis “Talli” Tallichet, a Hollywood actress best known for her role in the film noir Stranger on the Third Floor (1940), was born in Dallas, Texas, on March 13, 1914. She was the daughter of David Compton Tallichet, Sr., a food broker, and Margaret E. (Williford) Tallichet, a piano teacher. The couple moved from Demopolis, Alabama, to Dallas, before Margaret’s birth. Tallichet was the older sister of restauranteur and aviator David Compton Tallichet, Jr. She attended the Hockaday School and Highland Park High School, where she participated in drama. She took the lead role in the school’s play Come Out of the Kitchen in 1931. After attending Southwestern University (later Rhodes College) at Memphis, Tennessee, for two years, Tallichet resumed her studies in Dallas and graduated with honors with degrees in English and French from Southern Methodist University in 1935. Beginning in her senior year at SMU, she worked for the Dallas Times Herald as a society and entertainment writer and went on to become a society editor for the Dallas Morning News.

At the recommendation of a talent scout in Dallas, Tallichet set her sights on a film career in Hollywood. In 1936 she traveled to Los Angeles, where she stayed with her aunt, a Mrs. R. Lewis Jones. Previous experience working for newspapers landed Tallichet a job as a stenographer in the publicity department at Paramount Pictures. She soon became a secretary to Rufus Blair. While escorting Louisville Courier-Journal reporter Boyd Martin on an interview, Tallichet met actress Carole Lombard. Immediately impressed with her appearance and demeanor, Lombard arranged for Tallichet to meet with Adolph Zukor, the head of Paramount, and helped her land a contract with David Selznick of Selznick International Pictures. Her first role was an uncredited bit part in Selznick’s A Star Is Born (1937).

The studio sent her to New York for drama school. She studied under Tamara Daykarhanova and performed in summer-stock companies in little theater productions in Mount Kisco, New York, and Westport, Connecticut, and made guest appearances at little theaters in Louisville and New Orleans. Tallichet returned to Hollywood in 1938.

Her film career included roles in A Desperate Adventure (1938), Girls’ School (1938), Stand Up and Fight (1939), It Started with Eve (1941), and The Devil Pays Off (1941). Tallichet’s most notable role was Jane in Stranger on the Third Floor. Due in part to her southern accent, Tallichet found herself in the running to play the lead role in Gone with the Wind (1939). She tested for Scarlet O’Hara and was initially cast as Scarlet’s sister Carreen, but the part ultimately went to Ann Rutherford.

In 1938 Tallichet met director William Wyler. Less than three weeks later, on October 23, the couple married. They had five children: Catherine, Judith, William, Melanie, and David. After the birth of her second child, she retired from acting. She cared for the children while the family traveled for Wyler’s filming schedule. They lived in Rome, Italy, while Wyler directed Roman Holiday (1953) and again when he filmed Ben Hur (1959).

The couple was married for nearly forty-three years until William Wyler’s death in 1981. At the age of seventy-seven, Margaret Tallichet Wyler died of cancer on May 3, 1991, in Indio, California. She was cremated and her ashes scattered at sea.


Find a Grave

Birth: Mar. 13, 1914 Dallas Texas

Death: May 3, 1991 Los Angeles California

Motion Picture Actress. Best known for her role in the influencial 1940 film-noir "Stranger on the Third Floor." Other film appearances include "A Star is Born" (1937), "A Desperate Adventure" (1938), "Girl's School" (1938), "The Devil Pays Off" (1941), and "It Started With Eve" (1941). She was a contender for the coveted role of 'Scarlett O'Hara' in the 1939 film classic "Gone With the Wind." The part eventually went to actress Vivien Leigh. The burial plot next to her husband, renowned film director William Wyler, was meant for her but never used. Her cremated remains were instead scattered at sea. (bio by: A.J. Marik)

Family links:

  • William Wyler (1902 - 1981)*
  • William Wyler (1946 - 1949)*
  • Calculated relationship

Cause of death: Cancer

Burial: Cremated, Ashes scattered at sea.

Maintained by: Find A Grave Originally Created by: A.J. Marik Record added: Apr 21, 2003 Find A Grave Memorial# 7372712

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Margaret "Talli" Tallichet's Timeline

March 13, 1914
Dallas, Dallas County, Texas, United States
May 3, 1991
Age 77
Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California, United States
Cremated, remains were scattered at sea.