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bansi4

"In the Spotlight"

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Hi Mongo. I know I have posted this before, but I wanted to share this one more time. When I was 9, my family drove to LA to visit relatives, and somehow we got to have lunch at the Universal Studios Commissary. My dad was a salesman, and never met a stranger. He was also starstruck. What better foil than a nine year old skinny little girl with a ponytail and an autograph book? He spotted Mr. Bickford sitting at a table with another gentleman, and marched me over to get his autograph. Now, if someone interrupted MY lunch, I probably wouldn't be too happy about it, but Mr. Bickford was extremely gracious, but seemed a little uncomfortable, too.

After signing my book, we went back to our table. Dad looked back over at Mr. Bickford, and said,"Oh,my goodness! come on, Nancy" and back we went. He approached the other gentleman, and said "Oh, please excuse me, Mr. Daniell, I didn't recognize you before. Could you please give my daughter your autograph.?" I still have the book, with "Charles Bickford" on one page and "Henry Daniell" on the opposite.

What I remember most about the incident, was the beautiful smile Mr Bickford gave my dad when he came back. He had been uncomfortable to be the only one recognized! What a guy.

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Cashette, your analysis of Charles Bickford is refreshing. He certainly was/is an exceptional character actor.

 

Nancy, I recall your recollections of meeting Charles Bickford and getting his autograph (lucky you).

It's nice to know that you still have it and best of all the memory of that day with your father and Mr. Bickford's smile.

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Oscar nominee Bickford with Oscar winner Jennifer Jones for "The Song of Bernadette"

 

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Bickford (center) with Percy Kilbride, Linda Darnell, & Dana Andrews in "Fallen Angel" (1945)

 

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Bickford with Jennifer Jones in "Duel in the Sun"

 

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Bickford with Loretta Young & Joseph Cotten in "The Farmer's Daughter"

 

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Hi Mongo, Thanks for the photo from "Johnny Belinda". TCM showed this movie on September 14, 2007 in tribute to the passing of Jane Wyman. Charles is stern and loving as Belinda`s hardworking father. I can`t imagine any other actor playing this role any better than Mr. Bickford.

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Charles was also adept at comedy. He was very funny as the butler in the Morley household. I especially enjoyed his banter with Ethel Barrymore.

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Frank, thanks for posting the unique pictures of Bickford in "Fallen Angel" and "Whirlpool".

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Bickford in his final role as John Grainger on "The Virginian" TV series

 

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Bickford's unmarked grave at Woodlawn Cemetery in California

 

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Message was edited by: mongo

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In the Spotlight: TERESA WRIGHT

 

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A natural and lovely talent she was born Muriel Teresa Wright in Harlem, New York City on October 27, 1918 and grew up in Maplewood, New Jersey.

During her years at Columbia High School, she became seriously interested in acting and spent her summers working in Provincetown theater productions. Following her high school graduation in 1938, she returned to New York and was hired to understudy the role of Emily (played by Dorothy McGuire and later Martha Scott) in Thornton Wilder's "Our Town". She took over the role when Martha Scott went to Hollywood to make the film version of the play.

 

In the fall of 1939, she appeared in the stage play "Life with Father", playing the role of Mary Skinner for two years. It was there that she was discovered by a talent scout hired by Samuel Goldwyn to find a young actress for the role of Bette Davis' daughter in the 1941 adaptation of Lillian Hellman's "The Little Foxes". She was immediately signed to a five-year Hollywood contract but asserted her seriousness as an actress.

 

Wright was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her screen debut in "The Little Foxes" (1941). The following year, she was nominated again, this time for Best Actress for "The Pride of the Yankees", in which she played opposite Gary Cooper as the wife of Lou Gehrig; that same year, she won Best Supporting Actress as the daughter-in-law of Greer Garson's character in "Mrs. Miniver". No actor has ever duplicated her feat of receiving an Oscar nomination for each of her first three films.

 

In 1943, Wright was loaned out by Goldwyn for the Universal film "Shadow of a Doubt", directed by Alfred Hitchcock. She played an innocent young woman who discovers that her beloved uncle, played by Joseph Cotten, is a serial murderer. Other notable films include "The Best Years of Our Lives" (1946), an award-winning film about the adjustments of servicemen returning home after World War II, and "The Men" (1950) opposite Marlon Brando.

 

Wright rebelled against the studio system of the time. When Samuel Goldwyn fired her, citing her refusal to publicize the film "Enchantment" (1948), she expressed no regret about losing her $5,000 per week contract. She said, "The type of contract between players and producers is, I feel, antiquated in form and abstract in concept... We have no privacies which producers cannot invade, they trade us like cattle, boss us like children."

However, before a March 2006 screening of "Enchantment" on Turner Classic Movies, host Robert Osborne said that Wright later regretted leaving Goldwyn, since her salary per film went from $125,000 under Goldwyn to about $25,000 per film afterwards.

 

Other films included, "Casanova Brown", "Pursued", "The Trouble with Women" with Ray Milland, "The Capture" with Lew Ayres, "The Steel Trap", "The Actress", "Track of the cat", "The Happy Ending", etc.

Her husband, Niven Busch, originally penned "Duel in the Sun" (1946) for her to play the lead, as a departure from her girl-next-door roles. But pregnancy forced her to drop out, and Jennifer Jones got the lead.

 

The "Golden Age" of TV was her salvation during the lean film years in which she appeared in fine form in a number of dramatic showcases.

 

After 1959, she worked mainly in television and on the stage. She was nominated for Emmy Awards in 1957 for "The Miracle Worker" and in 1960 for "The Margaret Bourke-White Story". She was in the 1975 Broadway revival of "Death of a Salesman" and the 1980 revival of "Morning's at Seven", for which she won a Drama Desk Award as a member of the Outstanding Ensemble Performance.

 

Her more recent movie appearances included a major role in "Somewhere in Time" (1980) and the role of Miss Birdie in John Grisham's "The Rainmaker" (1997).

 

I recall that she appeared on both Academy Award shows in 1998 and in 2003 honoring past Oscar winners. She sat last in line alphabetically, a small figure of a woman, yet ever so gracious.

 

Wright was married to writer Niven Busch from 1942 to 1952; they had two children. She married playwright Robert Anderson in 1959; they later divorced, but maintained a close relationship until the end of her life.

 

She died of a heart attack at Yale-New Haven Hospital in Connecticut at the age of 86.

 

In honor of her heartfelt performance in "The Pride of the Yankees" (1942), when Teresa Wright died in 2005, when the roll call of former Yankees who had passed on was announced, her name was read out among all the ballplayers.

 

She has two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, one for motion pictures and one for television.

 

Quoted: "I only ever wanted to be an actress, not a star." Lucky for us, she was both.

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Hi Joe!

As always another great spotlight. I haved always enjoyed Theresa Wright. Her and Dana Andrews were great chemistry in The Best Years Of Our Lives. and with Joesph Cotton In Shadow of A Doubt.

And also the spot on Charles Bickford was another great one.

Christine

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Hi Joe!

As always another great spotlight. I haved always enjoyed Theresa Wright. Her and Dana Andrews were great chemistry in The Best Years Of Our Lives. and with Joesph Cotton In Shadow of A Doubt.

And also the spot on Charles Bickford was another great one.

Christine

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