Judith Anderson

Actor
A leading Broadway star from the 1920s through the 50s, Judith Anderson was perhaps most famous for her savage, award-winning performance as "Medea" in 1947; as a formidable Lady Macbeth (opposite Laurence Olivier in ... Read more »
Born: 02/09/1898 in Australia

Filmography

Actor (34)

Santa Barbara 1983 - 1993 (TV Show)

Actor

Impure Thoughts 1986 (Movie)

Narration(Sister of Purgatory) (Narrator)

The Thrill of Genius 1984 (Movie)

Herself (Actor)

The Borrowers 1973 - 1974 (TV Show)

Actor

A Salute to Television's 25th Anniversary 1972 - 1973 (TV Show)

Actor

Inn of the Damned 1973 (Movie)

Caroline Straulle (Actor)

A Man Called Horse 1970 (Movie)

Buffalo Cow Head (Actor)

The File on Devlin 1969 - 1970 (TV Show)

Actor

Don't Bother to Knock 1964 (Movie)

Maggie Shoemaker (Actor)

Macbeth 1960 - 1961 (TV Show)

Actor

Cinderfella 1960 (Movie)

Wicked Stepmother (Actor)

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof 1958 (Movie)

Big Mama Pollitt (Actor)

Telephone Time 1955 - 1958 (TV Show)

Actor

Caesar and Cleopatra 1955 - 1956 (TV Show)

Actor

The Ten Commandments 1956 (Movie)

Memnet (Actor)

Macbeth 1954 - 1955 (TV Show)

Actor

Pursued 1947 (Movie)

Mrs. Callum (Actor)

Tycoon 1947 (Movie)

Miss Braithwaite (Actor)

The Strange Love of Martha Ivers 1946 (Movie)

(Actor)

Laura 1944 (Movie)

(Actor)

Stage Door Canteen 1942 (Movie)

(Actor)

All Through the Night 1941 (Movie)

(Actor)

Kings Row 1940 (Movie)

Harriet Gordon (Actor)

Rebecca 1940 (Movie)

Mrs. Danvers (Actor)

Blood Money 1932 (Movie)

Ruby Darling (Actor)

Free and Easy 1930 (Movie)

Lady Joan Culver (Actor)

And Then There Were None (Movie)

Emily Brent (Actor)

Forty Little Mothers (Movie)

Mme. Granville (Actor)

Lady Scarface (Movie)

Slade (Actor)

The Booth (TV Show)

Actor

The Furies (Movie)

Flo Burnett (Actor)

The Red House (Movie)

Ellen Morgan (Actor)

The Specter of the Rose (Movie)

La Belle Sylph (Actor)

The Underground Man (TV Show)

Actor

Biography

A leading Broadway star from the 1920s through the 50s, Judith Anderson was perhaps most famous for her savage, award-winning performance as "Medea" in 1947; as a formidable Lady Macbeth (opposite Laurence Olivier in London in 1937 and Maurice Evans on Broadway in 1941); and as an interpreter of the neurotic heroines of Eugene O'Neill (Nina in "Strange Interlude" in 1928 and Lavinia in "Mourning Becomes Electra" in 1932). Anderson made her film debut in 1933 and played the sinister housekeeper Mrs. Danvers in Hitchcock's "Rebecca" seven years later. It was the first, and most memorable, in a series of malevolent character roles that exploited her severe features and commanding presence. Cast against type, Anderson made an effective Big Mama in Richard Brooks' film adaptation of "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" (1958). Late in her career she gained a new following as campy grande dame Minx Lockridge on the NBC TV soap opera, "Santa Barbara".

Relationships

James Anderson-Anderson

Father

Jessie Margaret Anderson

Mother

Luther Greene

Husband
married on July 11, 1946 divorced in 1950

Benjamin Lehman

Husband
married on May 18, 1937 divorced on August 23, 1938 taught at University of California at Berkeley

Milestones

1991

Hospitalized in Santa Barbara with a stroke (August)

1986

Narrated feature, "Impure Thoughts"

1984

Featured in a regular role on TV soap opera, "Santa Barbara"

1984

Former Lion Theater on West 42nd Street in New York (Theater Row) renamed the Judith Anderson Theater

1982

Played the nurse in a Broadway revival of "Medea"; production broadcast on PBS (1983)

1970

Starred on stage in title role of "Hamlet" at Carnegie Hall in New York

1960

Again played Lady Macbeth on a "Hallmark Hall of Fame" broadcast

1954

Played Lady Macbeth on "Hallmark Hall of Fame"

1954

Appeared on TV's "Light's Diamond Jubilee"

1949

Returned to Broadway to star as "Medea" at the City Center

1947

Starred on Broadway in landmark production of "Medea" (which ran 214 performances), adapted specifically for Anderson from Euripides's drama by poet Robinson Jeffers; followed Broadway run with an eight-month coast to coast tour

1937

London stage debut, "Macbeth" at the Old Vic

1933

Film debut, "Blood Money"

1924

Broadway debut in "The Cobra"

1918

Went to Hollywood with a letter of introduction to Cecil B DeMille, who rejected her for the movies

1918

New York stage debut (Broadway stock) at the 14th Street Theatre

1915

Stage debut in "A Royal Divorce" at the Theater Royal in Sydney, Australia

Toured Australia with an American stock company

Entertained US Armed Forces overseas during WWII

Bonus Trivia

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"I like emotional roles because they permit unleashing of one's feelings." --Judith Anderson in THEATER MAGAZINE (1924), quoted in THE NEW YORK TIMES obituary (January 4, 1992)

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"We live, we breathe, we experience, we die, we love, we hate, we experience beauty and tragedy, and we find it in the parts we play. Whatever I do, I'm passionate about." --Judith Anderson discussing the actor's craft in 1984 (quoted in THE NEW YORK TIMES obituary, January 4, 1992)

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Named Dame Commander of the British Empire in 1960 by Queen Elizabeth II for "distinguished contributions to the stage".

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Received the Australian Commander Award given by Queen Elizabeth (1991).

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