After winning several beauty contests, including Miss Coney Island and the eighth annual New York Skate Queen’s Contest, she began modeling as a teenager. The first agent liked her photos, but asked her to change her name. He chose Vicky as a tribute to actress Vicky Lester; Dougan was his mother’s maiden name.
In 1953, at the age of 19, she appeared on the cover of Life magazine as part of a story on Working Mothers, along with her 3-year-old daughter, Dider, a brief wedding product.
She was signed as a model by Eileen Ford and appeared in advertisements for Maybelline, Qtex and Charmaine, and on the cover of Harper’s Bazaar, Seventeen and Collier’s magazine, in addition to many other nuanced titles such as Modern Romance. She got upwards of $ 100 an hour to work as a model, she said, but dreams of acting always haunt her. He took classes with world-class coaches such as Stella Adler and Eric Morris, and appeared as an announcer for “The Jackie Gleason Show”.
Ms Dagan said she was offered a contract by Paramount but declined because it was not enough money. “They offered to give me one hour as a model for a week.” Instead, he signed with Batcock, a move he regretted. “I should have just signed with Paramount because at least they were making films.”
He spent the entirety of 1957 attending the film premiere and setting tabloids on fire but was not called for any auditions. She said that the agent who signed her to the William Morris Talent Agency, Phil Kellogg, forgot her contract at a desk, which is why she was never sent a script. After expressing resentment over Betikat not working, he said, “They offered to put me in a line, but I said, ‘Forget it.”
#MeToo in Midcentury
Ms. Dougan’s brief time in Hollywood was married by a number of unsuspecting audiences of famous men, whom she regularly reprimanded. Jerry Lewis, whom he describes as “a very big thing”, once called him to his office to read for a part. The script never came, but there was a bucket of champagne on ice. Looking at the direction in which the interview was going, Ms. Dagan made an excuse to get a second appointment. “He had something different in his mind,” he said.