Florence Bates

Florence Bates

actress, soundtrack

Florence Bates was born on Apr 15, 1888 in USA. Florence Bates's big-screen debut came with The Man in Blue directed by Milton Carruth in 1937. Florence Bates is known for A Letter to Three Wives directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz, Jeanne Crain stars as Deborah Bishop and Linda Darnell as Lora Mae Hollingsway. The most recent award Florence Bates achieved is National Board of Review, USA. The upcoming new movie Florence Bates plays is Paris Model which will be released on Nov 10, 1953.

The American character actress, Florence Rabe, was the daughter of an antique store owner. She gained a degree in Mathematics from the University of Texas in 1906 and went on to a career in teaching and social work. She changed course after being persuaded by a friend to study law, and, passing her bar exam in 1914, practised for four years in San Antonio. When her parents died, she took over the business and travelled abroad extensively to acquire stock, all the while adding to her knowledge of foreign languages (she was, for instance, a fluent Spanish speaker). After the Wall Street crash of 1929, Florence sold the antique store and married Texan oilman William F. Jacoby. Jacoby eventually went bankrupt and the couple moved to California in the late 1930's, briefly becoming proprietors of a bakery.At this time, Florence, a heavy-set woman of matronly appearance and well into her middle age, developed an interest in acting and auditioned for the part of Miss Bates in the Pasadena Playhouse production of Jane Austen's 'Emma'. This proved to be a momentous career choice. Her popularity became such, that she went on to leading roles with the same company, changing her name to Florence Bates as a nod to her perceived good fortune. In 1939, she screen tested for Alfred Hitchcock, who was sufficiently impressed to cast her as the demanding, imperious dowager Mrs. Edythe Van Hopper in Rebecca (1940). Her excellent performance was the first in a gallery of memorable characters: wealthy socialites, irritable, henpecking wives, hotel managers (The Moon and Sixpence (1942)), theatre owners (Cette nuit et toujours (1945)) and unctuous, gossipy landladies (Le portrait de Jennie (1948)). She was equally adept at comedy, appearing to great effect in Le ciel peut attendre (1943) and Escale à Broadway (1951), with frequent co-star S.Z. Sakall, aka 'Cuddles'. She was enjoyably larger-than-life as Danny Kaye's prospective mother-in-law in La vie secrète de Walter Mitty (1947) and as Vera-Ellen's inebriated Russian dance teacher, Madame Dilyovska, in Un jour à New-York (1949). Bates even essayed a murderess in La pièce maudite (1947). Destined never to win any awards, Florence Bates continued in films until her death in 1954. She was pre-deceased by her sister, her only daughter and her husband.

  • Birthday

    Apr 15, 1888
  • Place of Birth

    San Antonio, Texas, USA

Known For


1 wins & 0 nominations

National Board of Review, USA
Best Acting
Winner - NBR Award

Movies & TV Shows

TV Shows