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Today’s Memory – Bette Davis

5 - Bette Davis Old age is no place for sissies

The key to life is accepting challenges. Once someone stops doing this, he’s dead

Bette Davis (All About Eve)Bette Davis

April 5, 1908, Lowell, Massachusetts, U.S. – October 6, 1989, Neuilly-sur-Seine, France was an American actress of film, television, and theater. With a career spanning 60 years

Ruth Elizabeth Daviswas a versatile, volatile American actress, whose raw, unbridled intensity kept her at the top of her profession for 50 years.

In 1929 she made her first Broadway appearances, in Broken Dishes and Solid South, which led to a movie contract with Universal Pictures. Upon her arrival in Hollywood, however, the studio executives determined that she had no “sex appeal.” The actor Murray Kinnell, with whom she had appeared in The Menace (1932), recommended her to play the ingenue in Warner BrothersThe Man Who Played God (1932). The positive critical response to her work in this film prompted Warner Brothers to sign Davis to a contract.

After a series of undemanding roles for Warner Brothers, she begged the studio to lend her to RKO Radio Pictures to play the vicious, relentlessly unsympathetic Mildred in Of Human Bondage (1934), a film version of W. Somerset Maugham’s novel. Davis’s bravura performance as Mildred won her critical acclaim and industry respect, but studio politics prevented her from receiving an Academy Award. She subsequently won what many considered a “consolation” Oscar for her portrayal of an alcoholic, self-destructive actress in Dangerous (1935).

During the 1940s she made several successful movies, including The Letter (1940), The Little Foxes (1941), Now, Voyager (1942), Watch on the Rhine (1943), and The Corn Is Green (1945)… In 1977 she became the first woman to receive the American Film Institute Life Achievement Award. Two years later she won an Emmy for her work in the made-for-television movie Strangers: The Story of a Mother and Daughter (1979).

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As Summers Die (1986)


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