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Barbara Bel Geddes
Barbara Bel Geddes
(October 31, 1922 – August 8, 2005) was an American actress, artist, and children's author, whose career spanned six decades. She was best known for her starring role as matriarch Miss Ellie Ewing
Miss Ellie Ewing
in the television drama series Dallas. Bel Geddes also starred as Maggie in the original Broadway production of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. Her notable films included Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo (1958) and I Remember Mama (1948). Throughout her career, she was the recipient of several acting awards and nominations.

Contents

1 Early and personal life 2 Career

2.1 Broadway 2.2 Hollywood 2.3 Dallas

3 Life after Dallas 4 Death 5 Credits

5.1 Broadway 5.2 Film 5.3 Television

6 References 7 Further reading 8 External links

Early and personal life[edit] Bel Geddes was born on October 31, 1922, in New York City, the daughter of Helen Belle (née Schneider) (1891 – 1938) and stage and industrial designer Norman Bel Geddes
Norman Bel Geddes
(1893 – 1958).[1] She married theatrical manager Carl Sawyer (né Schreuer) in 1944; they had one daughter, Susan. They divorced in 1951. Later that year, she married stage director Windsor Lewis, with whom she had a daughter, Betsy. When Lewis became ill in 1967, Bel Geddes suspended her career to care for him until his death in 1972. Career[edit] Broadway[edit]

Bel Geddes in 1952

Bel Geddes came to prominence in the 1946 Broadway production of Deep Are The Roots. The performance garnered her the Clarence Derwent Award, and the Donaldson Award (forerunner of the Tony Awards) presented to her by Laurette Taylor, for "Outstanding Achievement in The Theatre". From 1951 to 1953, Bel Geddes played 924 performances of the F. Hugh Herbert hit comedy The Moon Is Blue. In 1955, she created the role of Maggie "The Cat" in Elia Kazan's original Broadway production of Tennessee Williams' Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, and in 1961 created the title role in the Jean Kerr comedy Mary, Mary which became Broadway's longest-running show with over 1,500 performances. Both roles earned her Tony Award
Tony Award
nominations. Other highlights include John Steinbeck's Burning Bright, Edward Albee's Everything in the Garden, and Silent Night, Lonely Night with Henry Fonda. In 1952, she received the prestigious "Woman of the Year" award from Harvard University's Hasty Pudding Theatricals, America's oldest theater company; In 1993, having appeared in 15 Broadway productions, she was inducted into the American Theater Hall of Fame (located in the Gershwin Theatre in New York City), a distinction she shared with her father, stage and industrial designer Norman Bel Geddes. Hollywood[edit] Bel Geddes began her film career starring with Henry Fonda
Henry Fonda
in The Long Night (1947), a remake of the 1939 French film Le Jour Se Lève. "I went out to California awfully young," she remarked. "I remember Lillian Hellman
Lillian Hellman
and Elia Kazan
Elia Kazan
telling me, 'Don't go, learn your craft.' But I loved films." The following year, she was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress
Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress
for her performance in the George Stevens
George Stevens
classic film I Remember Mama.[2]

Bel Geddes in Panic in the Streets (1950)

She played Richard Widmark's wife Nancy in Kazan's 1950 film noir Panic in the Streets.[2] In 1958, Alfred Hitchcock
Alfred Hitchcock
cast her with James Stewart in Vertigo as the long-suffering bohemian, Midge. Bel Geddes also starred with Danny Kaye
Danny Kaye
and Louis Armstrong
Louis Armstrong
in the screen musical The Five Pennies. When an investigation from the House Un-American Activities Committee saw Bel Geddes's name put on the Hollywood blacklist
Hollywood blacklist
during the 1950s, it stalled her film career for a time, and she carried on with her acting on Broadway and an occasional part on television. Bel Geddes found new opportunity in television when she was cast in four episodes of Alfred Hitchcock
Alfred Hitchcock
Presents, including "Lamb to the Slaughter", in which she played a housewife who killed her husband by bludgeoning him to death with a frozen leg of lamb, cooking the murder weapon, and then serving it to the investigating police. She appeared in series such as Playhouse 90, CBS Playhouse, Riverboat, Dr. Kildare, and Death Valley Days. In 1977, she starred in the highly acclaimed production of the Thornton Wilder
Thornton Wilder
classic, Our Town
Our Town
with Hal Holbrook. Dallas[edit] In 1978, Bel Geddes was the first artist signed to star in Dallas. The role of the family matriarch, Miss Ellie, brought her renewed international recognition. She appeared in many episodes, in almost every season of the series, for a total of 280 episodes from 1978 to 1990 (she was absent from the 1984–85 and 1990–91 seasons) and remains the only cast member to win the Emmy Award (Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress - Drama Series) and the Golden Globe (List of Golden Globe Awards: Television, Best Actress, Drama).[2] In 1985, she also received Germany's Golden Camera Award.

Bel Geddes as Miss Ellie Ewing
Miss Ellie Ewing
in Dallas

Larry Hagman, who played J. R. Ewing, told the Associated Press: "She was the rock of Dallas. She was just a really nice woman and a wonderful actress. She was kind of the glue that held the whole thing together." In a later interview for the website "Ultimate Dallas", Hagman said, "The reason I took the show, they said Barbara Bel Geddes is going to play your mother, and I said, 'Well, that's a touch of class, you know,' so of course I wanted to work with her." In 1971, Bel Geddes underwent a radical mastectomy, which was an experience that she relived while playing Miss Ellie in the 1979–80 season of Dallas. The performance garnered her the Emmy Award. She was also honored by former First Lady, Betty Ford, for helping to raise breast cancer awareness. On March 15, 1983, Bel Geddes narrowly avoided a heart attack, but the media falsely reported that she had a heart attack. Only days after she completed filming for the 1982–83 season, her doctor discovered a condition that required emergency quadruple bypass surgery. Bel Geddes underwent heart surgery, and she missed the first 11 episodes of the 1983–84 season[3] and was replaced with actress Donna Reed for the 1984–85 season. With her health improved, CBS-TV persuaded Lorimar Productions to return Bel Geddes to the role of Miss Ellie for the 1985–86 season.[4] She remained in the role until the later stages of the penultimate season of Dallas in 1990. Life after Dallas[edit] Bel Geddes retired from acting in 1990 and settled in her home in Northeast Harbor, Maine, where she continued to work as a fine artist. She was the author of two children's books, I Like to Be Me and So Do I, as well as the creator of a popular line of greeting cards. Looking back on her career, Bel Geddes told People: "They're always making me play well-bred ladies. I'm not very well bred, and I'm not much of a lady."[5] Death[edit] Bel Geddes died of lung cancer on August 8, 2005, at her home in Northeast Harbor, Maine, at the age of 82.[6] She was cremated, and her ashes were scattered from a simple wooden boat into the harbor waters bordering her estate in Northeast Harbor.[7] At the revival of Dallas, Patrick Duffy, who played her youngest son, Bobby, in the original CBS Dallas series, said: "Barbara is a big piece of our history, and it's important to me to honor her. To come back with Linda Gray
Linda Gray
as Sue Ellen and Larry Hagman
Larry Hagman
in his J.R. hat, and then see the words Ellie Southworth Ewing Farlow on the gravestone made me think, 'Oh, that's right -- she's gone." "Through the whole first season, I don't think an episode goes by that Mama is not mentioned in reference to Southfork and the land."[8] Credits[edit] Broadway[edit]

Year Title Role Notes

Feb 11, 1941 – May 10, 1941 Out of the Frying Pan Dottie Coburn

Oct 27, 1942 – Nov 14, 1942 Little Darling Cynthia Brown

Jan 13, 1943 – Jan 16, 1943 Nine Girls Alice

Mar 31, 1944 – May 6, 1944 Mrs. January and Mr. X Wilhelmina

Sep 26, 1945 – Nov 16, 1946 Deep Are the Roots Genevra Langdon Winner — Donaldson Award, Theatre World Award, Clarence Derwent Award

Oct 18, 1950 – Oct 28, 1950 Burning Bright Mordeen

Mar 8, 1951 – May 30, 1953 The Moon Is Blue Patty O'Neill

Nov 17, 1954 – Dec 4, 1954 The Living Room Rose Pemberton

Mar 24, 1955 – Nov 17, 1956 Cat on a Hot Tin Roof Maggie Nominated — Tony Award
Tony Award
for Best Actress in a Play

Nov 1, 1956 – Dec 22, 1956 The Sleeping Prince Mary

Dec 3, 1959 – Mar 19, 1960 Silent Night, Lonely Night Katherine

Mar 8, 1961 – Dec 12, 1964 Mary, Mary Mary McKellaway Nominated — Tony Award
Tony Award
for Best Actress in a Play

Nov 11, 1964 – Jan 7, 1967 Luv Ellen Manville

Nov 29, 1967 – Feb 10, 1968 Everything in the Garden Jenny

Feb 8, 1973 – Jun 30, 1973 Finishing Touches Katy Cooper

Film[edit]

Year Title Role Notes

1947 The Long Night Jo Ann

1948 I Remember Mama Katrin Hanson Nominated — Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress

Blood on the Moon Amy Lufton

1949 Caught Leonora Eames

1950 Panic in the Streets Nancy Reed

1951 Fourteen Hours Virginia Foster

1958 Vertigo Midge Wood

1959 The Five Pennies Willa Stutsman

1960 Five Branded Women Marja

1961 By Love Possessed Clarissa Winner

1971 Summertree Ruth

The Todd Killings Mrs. Todd

Television[edit]

Year Title Role Notes

1950 Robert Montgomery Presents Rebecca de Winter/Tracy Samantha Lord 2 episodes

Pulitzer Prize Playhouse Bethel Merriday 1 episode: "Bethel Merriday"

The Nash Airflyte Theater Molly Morgan 1 episode: "Molly Morgan"

1954 The Campbell Playhouse

1 episode: "XXXXX Isn't Everything"

1957 Schlitz Playhouse of Stars Marcia 2 episodes

1957–1958 Studio One Charlotte Lamb 2 episodes

1958 Playhouse 90 Sidney Cantrell 1 episode: "Rumors of Evening"

Decision Marcia 1 episode: "Fifty Beautiful Girls"

The United States Steel Hour Lily Barton 1 episode: "Mid-Summer"

1959 Riverboat Missy Belle 1 episode: "Payment in Full"

1960 Dow Hour of Great Mysteries

1 episode: "The Burning Court"

1958–1960 Alfred Hitchcock
Alfred Hitchcock
Presents Lucia Clay/Mary Maloney/Helen Brewster/Sybilla Meade 4 episodes

1965 Dr. Kildare Dr. Ruth Halliman 1 episode: "A Miracle for Margaret"

1968 CBS Playhouse Doris Gray 1 episode: "Secrets"

1969 Journey to the Unknown Inga Madison 1 episode: "The Madison Equation"

Daniel Boone Molly Malone 1 episode: "Sweet Molly Malone"

1976 Spencer's Pilots Maggie 1 episode: "The Search"

1977 Our Town Mrs. Webb TV movie

1978–1990 Dallas Miss Ellie Ewing
Miss Ellie Ewing
Farlow 281 episodes Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series (1980) Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Drama
Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Drama
(1982) Goldene Kamera for Best actress on television (1985) Soap Opera Digest Awards for Outstanding Actress in a Mature Role in a Prime Time Soap Opera (1984) Nominated — Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series (1979, 1981) Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Drama (1980,1981) Nominated — Soap Opera Digest Awards for Outstanding Actress in a Mature Role on a Prime Time Serial (1986, 1988), (final television appearance)

References[edit]

^ The Midwestern Roots of Barbara Bel Geddes
Barbara Bel Geddes
Archived 2012-08-27 at the Wayback Machine., genealogymagazine.com; accessed January 27, 2014. ^ a b c Barbara Bel Geddes- Biography Archived January 16, 2013, at the Wayback Machine., Yahoo! ^ " Barbara Bel Geddes
Barbara Bel Geddes
has open heart operation". The New York Times. Associated Press. March 15, 1983. Retrieved March 16, 2016.  ^ " Donna Reed
Donna Reed
Loses Bid for 'Dallas' Role". The New York Times. 1985-06-19. Retrieved 2008-11-01 ^ Kahn, Toby (June 28, 1982). "To Wildlife and Dallas Lowlife, Barbara Bel Geddes Gives the Milk of Human Kindness". People. Retrieved December 17, 2017.  ^ Actress Barbara Bel Geddes
Barbara Bel Geddes
has died, MSNBC, August 10, 2005. ^ https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/11512563/barbara-bel_geddes ^ http://www.tvweek.com/blogs/tvbizwire/2012/04/the-late-miss-ellie-will-be-pa.php#more

Further reading[edit]

Barbara Bel Geddes: I Like to Be Me, Viking Juvenile (1963) – ISBN 0-670-39059-3 Barbara Bel Geddes: So Do I, Price Stern Sloan Pub (1973) – ISBN 0-448-03420-4

External links[edit]

Biography portal

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Barbara Bel Geddes.

Official Barbara Bel Geddes
Barbara Bel Geddes
Website Barbara Bel Geddes
Barbara Bel Geddes
at the Internet Broadway Database
Internet Broadway Database
Barbara Bel Geddes
Barbara Bel Geddes
on IMDb Barbara Bel Geddes
Barbara Bel Geddes
at AllMovie "Barbara Bel Geddes". Find a Grave. Retrieved August 10, 2010.  CNN Obituary Mediaweek obituary

v t e

Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series

Helen Hayes
Helen Hayes
(1952) Loretta Young
Loretta Young
(1954) Loretta Young
Loretta Young
(1956) Loretta Young
Loretta Young
(1959) Barbara Stanwyck
Barbara Stanwyck
(1961) Barbara Stanwyck
Barbara Stanwyck
(1966) Barbara Bain
Barbara Bain
(1967) Barbara Bain
Barbara Bain
(1968) Barbara Bain
Barbara Bain
(1969) Susan Hampshire
Susan Hampshire
(1970) Susan Hampshire
Susan Hampshire
(1971) Glenda Jackson
Glenda Jackson
(1972) Michael Learned
Michael Learned
(1973) Michael Learned
Michael Learned
(1974) Jean Marsh (1975) Michael Learned
Michael Learned
(1976) Lindsay Wagner
Lindsay Wagner
(1977) Sada Thompson
Sada Thompson
(1978) Mariette Hartley
Mariette Hartley
(1979) Barbara Bel Geddes
Barbara Bel Geddes
(1980) Barbara Babcock
Barbara Babcock
(1981) Michael Learned
Michael Learned
(1982) Tyne Daly
Tyne Daly
(1983) Tyne Daly
Tyne Daly
(1984) Tyne Daly
Tyne Daly
(1985) Sharon Gless
Sharon Gless
(1986) Sharon Gless
Sharon Gless
(1987) Tyne Daly
Tyne Daly
(1988) Dana Delany
Dana Delany
(1989) Patricia Wettig
Patricia Wettig
(1990) Patricia Wettig
Patricia Wettig
(1991) Dana Delany
Dana Delany
(1992) Kathy Baker
Kathy Baker
(1993) Sela Ward
Sela Ward
(1994) Kathy Baker
Kathy Baker
(1995) Kathy Baker
Kathy Baker
(1996) Gillian Anderson
Gillian Anderson
(1997) Christine Lahti
Christine Lahti
(1998) Edie Falco
Edie Falco
(1999) Sela Ward
Sela Ward
(2000) Edie Falco
Edie Falco
(2001) Allison Janney
Allison Janney
(2002) Edie Falco
Edie Falco
(2003) Allison Janney
Allison Janney
(2004) Patricia Arquette
Patricia Arquette
(2005) Mariska Hargitay
Mariska Hargitay
(2006) Sally Field
Sally Field
(2007) Glenn Close
Glenn Close
(2008) Glenn Close
Glenn Close
(2009) Kyra Sedgwick
Kyra Sedgwick
(2010) Julianna Margulies
Julianna Margulies
(2011) Claire Danes
Claire Danes
(2012) Claire Danes
Claire Danes
(2013) Julianna Margulies
Julianna Margulies
(2014) Viola Davis
Viola Davis
(2015) Tatiana Maslany
Tatiana Maslany
(2016) Elisabeth Moss
Elisabeth Moss
(2017)

v t e

Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Drama

Linda Cristal
Linda Cristal
(1969) Peggy Lipton
Peggy Lipton
(1970) Patricia Neal
Patricia Neal
(1971) Gail Fisher
Gail Fisher
(1972) Lee Remick
Lee Remick
(1973) Angie Dickinson
Angie Dickinson
(1974) Lee Remick
Lee Remick
(1975) Susan Blakely
Susan Blakely
(1976) Lesley Ann Warren
Lesley Ann Warren
(1977) Rosemary Harris
Rosemary Harris
(1978) Natalie Wood
Natalie Wood
(1979) Yoko Shimada (1980) Linda Evans/ Barbara Bel Geddes
Barbara Bel Geddes
(1981) Joan Collins
Joan Collins
(1982) Jane Wyman
Jane Wyman
(1983) Angela Lansbury
Angela Lansbury
(1984) Sharon Gless
Sharon Gless
(1985) Angela Lansbury
Angela Lansbury
(1986) Susan Dey
Susan Dey
(1987) Jill Eikenberry
Jill Eikenberry
(1988) Angela Lansbury
Angela Lansbury
(1989) Sharon Gless/ Patricia Wettig
Patricia Wettig
(1990) Angela Lansbury
Angela Lansbury
(1991) Regina Taylor
Regina Taylor
(1992) Kathy Baker
Kathy Baker
(1993) Claire Danes
Claire Danes
(1994) Jane Seymour (1995) Gillian Anderson
Gillian Anderson
(1996) Christine Lahti
Christine Lahti
(1997) Keri Russell
Keri Russell
(1998) Edie Falco
Edie Falco
(1999) Sela Ward
Sela Ward
(2000) Jennifer Garner
Jennifer Garner
(2001) Edie Falco
Edie Falco
(2002) Frances Conroy
Frances Conroy
(2003) Mariska Hargitay
Mariska Hargitay
(2004) Geena Davis
Geena Davis
(2005) Kyra Sedgwick
Kyra Sedgwick
(2006) Glenn Close
Glenn Close
(2007) Anna Paquin
Anna Paquin
(2008) Julianna Margulies
Julianna Margulies
(2009) Katey Sagal
Katey Sagal
(2010) Claire Danes
Claire Danes
(2011) Claire Danes
Claire Danes
(2012) Robin Wright
Robin Wright
(2013) Ruth Wilson
Ruth Wilson
(2014) Taraji P. Henson
Taraji P. Henson
(2015) Claire Foy (2016) Elisabeth Moss
Elisabeth Moss
(2017)

v t e

Hasty Pudding Woman of the Year

1951–1975

Gertrude Lawrence
Gertrude Lawrence
(1951) Barbara Bel Geddes
Barbara Bel Geddes
(1952) Mamie Eisenhower
Mamie Eisenhower
(1953) Shirley Booth
Shirley Booth
(1954) Debbie Reynolds
Debbie Reynolds
(1955) Peggy Ann Garner
Peggy Ann Garner
(1956) Carroll Baker
Carroll Baker
(1957) Katharine Hepburn
Katharine Hepburn
(1958) Joanne Woodward
Joanne Woodward
(1959) Carol Lawrence
Carol Lawrence
(1960) Jane Fonda
Jane Fonda
(1961) Piper Laurie
Piper Laurie
(1962) Shirley MacLaine
Shirley MacLaine
(1963) Rosalind Russell
Rosalind Russell
(1964) Lee Remick
Lee Remick
(1965) Ethel Merman
Ethel Merman
(1966) Lauren Bacall
Lauren Bacall
(1967) Angela Lansbury
Angela Lansbury
(1968) Carol Burnett
Carol Burnett
(1969) Dionne Warwick
Dionne Warwick
(1970) Carol Channing
Carol Channing
(1971) Ruby Keeler
Ruby Keeler
(1972) Liza Minnelli
Liza Minnelli
(1973) Faye Dunaway
Faye Dunaway
(1974) Valerie Harper
Valerie Harper
(1975)

1976–2000

Bette Midler
Bette Midler
(1976) Elizabeth Taylor
Elizabeth Taylor
(1977) Beverly Sills
Beverly Sills
(1978) Candice Bergen
Candice Bergen
(1979) Meryl Streep
Meryl Streep
(1980) Mary Tyler Moore
Mary Tyler Moore
(1981) Ella Fitzgerald
Ella Fitzgerald
(1982) Julie Andrews
Julie Andrews
(1983) Joan Rivers
Joan Rivers
(1984) Cher
Cher
(1985) Sally Field
Sally Field
(1986) Bernadette Peters
Bernadette Peters
(1987) Lucille Ball
Lucille Ball
(1988) Kathleen Turner
Kathleen Turner
(1989) Glenn Close
Glenn Close
(1990) Diane Keaton
Diane Keaton
(1991) Jodie Foster
Jodie Foster
(1992) Whoopi Goldberg
Whoopi Goldberg
(1993) Meg Ryan
Meg Ryan
(1994) Michelle Pfeiffer
Michelle Pfeiffer
(1995) Susan Sarandon
Susan Sarandon
(1996) Julia Roberts
Julia Roberts
(1997) Sigourney Weaver
Sigourney Weaver
(1998) Goldie Hawn
Goldie Hawn
(1999) Jamie Lee Curtis
Jamie Lee Curtis
(2000)

2001–present

Drew Barrymore
Drew Barrymore
(2001) Sarah Jessica Parker
Sarah Jessica Parker
(2002) Anjelica Huston
Anjelica Huston
(2003) Sandra Bullock
Sandra Bullock
(2004) Catherine Zeta-Jones
Catherine Zeta-Jones
(2005) Halle Berry
Halle Berry
(2006) Scarlett Johansson
Scarlett Johansson
(2007) Charlize Theron
Charlize Theron
(2008) Renée Zellweger
Renée Zellweger
(2009) Anne Hathaway
Anne Hathaway
(2010) Julianne Moore
Julianne Moore
(2011) Claire Danes
Claire Danes
(2012) Marion Cotillard
Marion Cotillard
(2013) Helen Mirren
Helen Mirren
(2014) Amy Poehler
Amy Poehler
(2015) Kerry Washington
Kerry Washington
(2016) Octavia Spencer
Octavia Spencer
(2017) Mila Kunis
Mila Kunis
(2018)

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WorldCat Identities VIAF: 51877999 LCCN: n92059671 ISNI: 0000 0000 8130 7063 GND: 132019728 SUDOC: 066861969 BNF: cb139299842 (data) BNE: XX1122782 SN

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