Rosalind Russell

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Catherine Rosalind Russell (born June 4, 1907 in Waterbury , Connecticut , † November 28, 1976 in Beverly Hills , California ) was an American actress . Known above all for self-confident female characters in comedies, Russell received a total of four Oscar nominations.


Rosalind Russell (right) with Betty Ford in May 1976

The daughter of a lawyer and a fashion consultant trained at a New York drama school and went to Hollywood in 1934 with a contract with MGM . In the following time, she received major supporting and leading roles, including in King Vidor's doctor drama The Citadel (1937) with Robert Donat or as gossipy Sylvia Fowler in the exclusively female comedy The Women (1939) by George Cukor . However, she only became a star in 1940 through the role of the shrewd reporter Hildegard Johnson in the screwball comedy His Girl for Special Cases , directed by Howard Hawks

Her talent lay in light comedies, in which she mostly embodied self-confident and modern-looking women who shone with wit, sarcasm and elegance. She was often seen as a businesswoman who fell in love with her male secretary, such as Liebling, zum Diktat (1942), or as a woman with her own ideas, such as A Woman with an Entrepreneurial Spirit (1945). From the middle of the decade she worked without a permanent studio contract and now appeared more often in dramatic roles.

At the beginning of the 1950s, the film success of the now over 40-year-old actress waned. She returned to Broadway , where she shifted to character roles and starred in several successful theater productions. With the comedy The Great Aunt , she achieved great popularity and was nominated for the Tony Award , she also took on the leading role in the film adaptation of the same name from 1958. The other successful character roles of her film career include the young boy teacher in Picnic (1955) at the side of William Holden and Kim Novak and the ambitious stage mother of Gypsy Rose Lee in Gypsy - Queen of the Night (1962) with Natalie Wood . But she also played in some film flops such as Five Fingers Exercise or Oh Dad, Poor Dad, Mama's Hung You in the Closet and I'm Feeling So Sad . In the early 1970s, she had to retire from the acting business because of her arthritis .

Russell's grave in Holy Cross Cemetery

Russell was married from 1941 to the Danish-American producer Frederick Brisson (1912-1984), a son of the actor Carl Brisson . The marriage lasted until her death and the couple had a son named Carl Lance (* 1943). The strictly Catholic Russell was a lifelong friend of Loretta Young and Irene Dunne . She also maintained a friendly relationship with Joan Crawford for decades.

After four Oscar nominations without a win, the socially committed Russell received the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award, which can be equated with the Oscar, for her charitable work. Rosalind Russell died of breast cancer in November 1976 at the age of 69. A star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 1708 Vine Street commemorates the actress.



Golden Globe Award

Tony Award

  • 1953 Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical for Wonderful Town
  • 1957 - Nomination for best leading actress in a play for The Great Aunt

Filmography (selection)

  • 1934: I'll fight for you (Evelyn Prentice)
  • 1934: The President Vanishes
  • 1934: Never Marry First Time (Forsaking All Others)
  • 1935: The Night Is Young
  • 1935: The Casino Murder Case
  • 1935: Heroes of Today (West Point of the Air)
  • 1935: Public Opinion (Reckless)
  • 1935: You don't kiss spies (rendezvous)
  • 1935: Adventures in the Yellow Sea (China Seas)
  • 1936: Under Two Flags
  • 1936: Craig's Wife
  • 1936: Trouble for Two
  • 1937: Night Must Fall
  • 1937: Live, Love and Learn
  • 1938: Man-Proof
  • 1938: Love for four (Four's a Crowd)
  • 1938: The Citadel (The Citadel)
  • 1939: Fast and Loose
  • 1939: The Women (The Women)
  • 1940: His Girl Friday (His Girl Friday)
  • 1940: No Time for Comedy (No Time for Comedy)
  • 1941: This Thing Called Love
  • 1941: escape route unknown (They Met in Bombay)
  • 1941: The Feminine Touch
  • 1941: Revenge is Sweet (Design for Scandal)
  • 1942: Liebling, for dictation (Take a Letter, Darling)
  • 1942: My Sister Ellen (My Sister Eileen)
  • 1943: Flight for Freedom
  • 1943: What a Woman Succeeds
  • 1945: A Roughly Speaking Woman
  • 1946: Sister Kenny (Sister Kenny)
  • 1947: Mourning Becomes Electra
  • 1948: The Bronze Goddess (The Velvet Touch)
  • 1949: Honeymoon with Obstacles (Tell it to the Judge)
  • 1950: A Woman of Distinction
  • 1952: Never Wave at a WAC
  • 1955: Girl Rush
  • 1955: picnic (Picnic)
  • 1958: The great aunt (Auntie Mame)
  • 1962: A Stranger Arrived (Five Finger Exercise)
  • 1962: 1000 miles to Yokohama (A Majority of One)
  • 1962: Gypsy - Queen of the Night (Gypsy)
  • 1966: The Trouble with Angels
  • 1967: O father, poor father, mother hang you in the closet and I'm very sick (Oh Dad, Poor Dad, Mama's Hung You in the Closet and I'm Feeling So Sad)
  • 1967: Rosie
  • 1968: When angels travel ... (Where Angels Go, Trouble Follows)
  • 1971: Mrs. Pollifax - Spy

Web links

Commons : Rosalind Russell  - Album with pictures, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Rosalind Russell | Biography, Movie Highlights and Photos. Retrieved June 4, 2020 (American English).
  2. ^ Rosalind Russell | Biography, Movie Highlights and Photos. Retrieved June 4, 2020 (American English).
  3. ^ Bernard F. Dick: Forever Mame: The Life of Rosalind Russell . Univ. Press of Mississippi, 2009, ISBN 978-1-60473-139-2 ( [accessed June 4, 2020]).