An attractive, talented and intelligent brunette actor, Ruth Warrick has played leading roles with some regularity during her half century career in TV, theater and film. She is, however, perhaps most...
Supplied one of the voices for the Disney animated feature, "Song of the South"; also marked Warrick's last film at RKO, which distributed Disney productions
Played Anna in a Toronto production of the stage musical "The King and I", then went on a tour of major U.S. cities in the role
Became a licensed metaphysical teacher; was certified by the Unity School of Practical Christianity in Lees Summit, MO
Reprised the role of Hannah Cord for the NBC TV-movie, "Peyton Place: The Next Generation"
Made feature film debut in "Citizen Kane"
Played Hannah Cord on the ABC serial drama, "Peyton Place"; joined the series after its run had begun; received an Emmy nomination for the 1966-67 season; series continued until 1969
Played Mary Spain in a New York stage production of Nathanael West's "Miss Lonelyhearts" at the Music Box Theater
Played Phoebe Tyler (later Phoebe Tyler Wallingford) on the long-running ABC daytime drama, "All My Children"
Played Ellie Banks on the CBS sitcom, "Father of the Bride", based on the 1950 MGM hit feature film of the same title
Last feature for 12 years, "Roogie's Bump"
Played Essie in the Broadway musical, "Take Me Along", starring Jackie Gleason at the Shubert Theater
Played Emmeline Marshall in a Broadway revival of the stage musical, "Irene", at the Minskoff Theater, starring Debbie Reynolds in the title role
Returned to feature film work after 14 years to play supporting roles in two films, "The Returning" and "Deathmask"
Traveled to Moscow as part of "The Global Forum" that met with Russian President Mikhail Gorbachev regarding problems in the world's environment (Date approximate)
Hosted the NBC 15-minute anthology drama series, "Short, Short Drama"
Participated in an early in-house test of television held in the RCA Building in New York
Moved to Kansas City, MO while a high school student
Was one of the interviewees for the Oscar-nominated feature documentary, "The Battle Over 'Citizen Kane'"
Played the sister of the dead soldier in "Bury the Dead" at the Center Community Theater in Kansas City, MO
Returned to occasional feature film work; played character roles in several films of the late 1960s beginning with "Ride Beyond Vengeance"
Played Martha in "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" and Mary Tyrone in "Long Day's Journey Into Night" in Los Angeles stage productions; also went on tour
An attractive, talented and intelligent brunette actor, Ruth Warrick has played leading roles with some regularity during her half century career in TV, theater and film. She is, however, perhaps most associated with a series of character roles as middle to upper-class wives. Many were sympathetic, but more vivid were the ones in which her characters were practical, determined and conventional to the point of being frosty and forbidding.<p>A promotional tour brought Warrick from her native Kansas, where she had begun acting, to New York. She met "boy wonder" Orson Welles, promptly became involved with his famous Mercury Theater and quickly made her feature debut in the landmark "Citizen Kane" (1941). As newspaper mogul Charles Foster Kane's first wife, her Emily Monroe Norton, a US President's niece, began sweetly but progressed, via the justly famed breakfast table montage, to being cold and harsh, disillusioned by her husband's megalomania and neglect, even to the point of reading a rival newspaper.<p>Warrick kept busy in film in the 40s and brought a warm, quiet glow to her many supportive helpmates, but the roles themselves were often rather standardized. She was Douglas Fairbanks Jr.'s leading lady in "The Corsican Brothers" (1941), Pat O'Brien's in "The Iron Major" (1943) and Edward G. Robinson's in "Mr. Winkle Goes to War" (1944), but it was suggestive that VARIETY praised her performance as Randolph Scott's nurse in "China Sky" (1945) as superb, but confused her with Ruth Hussey. Similarly, in 1946 VARIETY praised her beauty and talent in "Perilous Holiday" (1946) but called Warrick's role her "first good break" since "Kane". Playing second leads as well, Warrick did well as the wife whose husband a flashily psychotic Anne Baxter tried to steal in "Guest in the House" (1944), and was even better as Dana Andrews' bitchy spouse in a good Joan Crawford vehicle, "Daisy Kenyon" (1947).<p>By the early 50s, Warrick was appearing in very modest second features such as "Beauty on Parade" (1950) and "Roogie's Bump" (1954). She ventured into TV hosting the 15-minute NBC anthology drama series, "Short, Short Drama" (1952-53) and recreated Joan Bennett's sensible wife and mother role for the CBS sitcom, "Father of the Bride" (1961-62), based on the 1950 hit film. Stage work ranged from Broadway's "Miss Lonelyhearts" (1957) to musicals with Jackie Gleason ("Take Me Along" 1960) and Debbie Reynolds (a revival of "Irene" 1973-74), to a tour in "The King and I" (1960-61) to nightclub work which further spotlighted her singing ability. Her role as Hannah Cord on ABC's "Peyton Place" (1965-67) netted her an Emmy nomination, and she did very occasional feature work ("Ride Beyond Vengeance" 1966, "Deathmask" 1983) as well. But Warrick won by far her greatest fame beginning in 1970 with her quarter-century reign as Phoebe Tyler Wallingford, prototype for the domineering grand dames Joan Collins and Jane Wyman would later bring to primetime, on ABC's daytime soap, "All My Children".
Frederick R Warrick Jr
Annie L Warrick
L Jarvis Cushing Jr
University of Missouri
Warrick was a school dropout consultant for the department of labor in President John F. Kennedy's administration.
Warrick served in the Job Training Corps during President Lyndon B. Johnson's administration.
She was appointed in the early 1990s to the U.N. World Women's Committee on Mental Health.
Warrick has long been active in arts-in-education programs, especially for the disadvantaged living in the Watts section of Los Angeles. She taught communication in the Watts area as part of Operation Bootstrap. In 1983 the board of directors of Business and Industry for Arts in Education, Inc. awarded her the first national Arts in Education Award, later renamed the Ruth Warrick Award for Arts in Education.
On her most famous role, Warrick noted: "... I've been on "All My Children" 19 years, and I've become a force in people's lives. They hug me, kiss me, grab my hand. People like the strength of Phoebe Tyler, although to begin with I thought of her as a silly person whose most strenuous activity was stirring the martinis gently so as not to bruise the gin. I had been involved with the civil rights and peace movements, a really involved activist, and she was the opposite, so I made her a really ridiculous bubblehead. After a few months, the director said to me, 'Your role is to make people afraid of you. When you walk into a room they should soil their pants.' I told him that was graphic enough. That's when Phoebe got very heavy."
Continuing on her role as Phoebe Tyler Wallingford, Warrick noted, "She was so outrageous you wanted to kill her, but she became a woman with spirit and spunk and spine, like Joan Collins and Jane Wyman would be. Oddly enough, men love her. Young people love her. Blacks love Phoebe because they have a great tradition of strong women. One black man shouted across the street to me, 'You hang in there, old girl.'"
Board Member, Business & Industry for the Arts in Education