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Bette Davis Features

This is the section for all our "FUN" Bette Davis information - please enjoy!

Did You Know?

... that Bette Davis attended the John Murray Anderson Dramatic School in New York City in the late 20's. She was considered the star of the class despite the fact that one of her classmates was legendary comedienne-to-be Lucille Ball.

... that Bette Davis signed a seven year contract with Warner Bros in 1930. But by 1936, appalled at the sub-par acting roles she was being assigned (despite having won a Best Actress Oscar for Dangerous), she did something few actresses before had attempted ... she went on strike. She fled to England where she planned to make movies of her own choosing. Warner Bros sued her for breach of contract and won. But she gained the attention of studio bosses and the quality of her new roles improved dramatically. This would be just one of many times that Bette took charge of her own career.

... that Bette Davis desperately wanted to play Scarlett in Gone With the Wind. She nearly got the part but Warner Bros wouldn't loan her out unless their own top leading man Errol Flynn got the role of Rhett Butler. Both producer David O Selznick and Bette objected and she lost the part to Vivien Leigh. She would, however, get to play her own version of Scarlett in the movie Jezebel. Don't miss our Tribute to Gone With the Wind and our Tribute to Vivien Leigh.

... that in 2001 director Steven Spielberg purchased Bette Davis Jezebel Best Actor Oscar at an auction for an undisclosed sum and donated it to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Museum. Steven Spielberg feels strongly that Academy Awards are special and should not be allowed to become a common part of the active entertainment collectible market.

... that Bette's most famous role as Margo Channing in All About Eve was an accident of fate - she stepped in at the last moment for Claudette Colbert who was too ill to play the part. Visit our Tribute to All About Eve.

... Bette Davis has two of her screen roles listed on the villainous side of American Film Institute's 100 Years of The Greatest Heroes and Villains: #43 Reigna Giddens in The Little Foxes #44 Baby Jane Hudson in What Ever Happened to Baby Jane

... that there are quite a few Bette Davis Academy Awards Fun Facts.

  • Bette Davis won 2 Academy Awards as Best Actress
  • Bette Davis was nominated for Best Actress 10 times
  • Bette Davis was nominated five years in a row for Best Actress (1938-1942)
  • Bette Davis was the first woman president of The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 1941.
  • Bette Davis' two Oscars were purchased by Steven Spielberg and returned to the Academy when they were offered for auction.
  • Bette Davis first nomination was a "write in" vote for Of Human Bondage. This was the only time this was allowed.
  • Bette Davis contended that she gave the Academy Award the nickname Oscar after her husband Harmon Oscar Nelson (this is disputed by the Academy)

... that Bette Davis tombstone reads: She did it the hard way.

... that after her death Bette Davis' son and her personal assistant began the Bette Davis Foundation to give scholarships to promising actors. The first recipient was . . . Meryl Streep.

... that during World War II Bette Davis was a top war bonds seller. She also was one of the stars who founded The Hollywood Canteen for lonely servicemen. For this service she was awarded the Distinguished Civilian Service Medal.

... that you should run right out to the post office to buy the Bette Davis commemorative stamp released 9/18/2008. This beautiful painting portrays Bette Davis as she appeared as Margo Channing in All About Eve.

... that in 1981 a song called Bette Davis Eyes became a number one hit and won Grammys for Song of the Year and Record of the Year. Her hair is Harlowe gold / Her lips sweet surprise / Her hands are never cold / She's got Bette Davis eyes. Here's a fun YouTube picture montage set to the song:

... You've heard all the stories about Bette Davis and the Scarlett O'Hara role that got away. Here you can see her explain it all herself.

... We LOVE this clip. Watch Bette Davis smoke cigarettes on television and answer question with frankness and charm. She jokes about her divorces, reveals her age, denies a feud with Joan Crawford and says that the Oscar she received was a consolation for not getting the one she deserved.

On Location

Grauman's/Mann's Chinese Theater Footprints
Bette Davis is just one of the many legendary celebrities to leave hand and footprints outside the famous Grauman's (now Mann's) Chinese Theater.

Mann's Chinese Theater
6925 Hollywood Blvd.
Hollywood, CA

Hollywood Walk of Fame Star
In the early 1960's, the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce developed the idea of the "Hollywood Walk of Fame." The sidewalks of the most famous streets in the heart of Hollywood were lined with "stars" recognizing celebrities' life-long contributions to the entertainment industry. Receiving a star is still to this day considered a huge honor. Here's where you can find Bette Davis' stars:

Walk of Fame Star
(Motion Pictures)

6225 Hollywood Blvd.
Hollywood, CA

Walk of Fame Star

6335 Hollywood Blvd.
Hollywood, CA

Former Homes of Bette Davis
1847 Camino Palmero
Hollywood, CA

1717 San Vicente
Santa Monica, CA

Burial Place of Bette Davis
Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills
6300 Forest Lawn Dr. Los Angeles, CA

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Return from Witch Mountain

Regina Giddens ( The Little Foxes ):

"The rich can be as eccentric as they like."

How many of Bette Davis' performances received Best Actress Academy Award nominations?