Thursday, October 25, 2018

Happy Halloween! "Night Must Fall" - Dame May Whitty (Part 2 of 4 by Guest Blogger Debbie)

As a lot of you already know, this was originally a stage play written by Emlyn Williams and first performed in 1935.  The 1937 film contained some of the original players from the London stage production of 1935 and the New York production of 1936.  The most important of these was the wonderful Dame May Whitty.

Born in 1865 in Liverpool, England, Whitty was a stage actress and made her Hollywood debut in "Night Must Fall" in 1937 at the age of 72.  She played Mrs. Branscom the bitter, fussy, self-pitying owner of Rose Briars, the country place where the story takes place.  Whitty was in the cast of some very successful films such as "The Lady Vanishes" (1938), "Suspicion" (1941), "Mrs. Miniver" (1942) and "Gaslight" (1944).  She was nominated for an Oscar twice.  Once for "Night Must Fall" and then again for "Mrs. Miniver".

She died in 1948 at the age of 82 in California, having never left the US after coming to this country for the role of Mrs. Branscom in "Night Must Fall". 

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