Job Actress * Acting teacher
Years active 1915-1949
Known for Withered, old vaguely-European women with some authority
Top Roles Madame Olga Kirowa, Maleva, Mme. Karina, Madame von Eln, The Amah
Top GenresDrama, Romance, Comedy, Film Adaptation, Adventure, Mystery
Top TopicsBook-Based, Monster, Christmas
Top Collaborators (Director), (Director), , (Director)
Shares birthday with Theda Bara, Clara Bow, William Powell  see more..

Maria Ouspenskaya Overview:

Character actress, Maria Ouspenskaya, was born on Jul 29, 1876 in Tula, Russian Empire [now Russia]. Ouspenskaya died at the age of 73 on Dec 3, 1949 in Los Angeles, CA .

MINI BIO:

Wizened, beetle-faced Maria Ouspenskaya was a tiny Russian actress who came to America in the early 1930s to set up an acting school in New York. Despite playing a wide range of diminutive dynamos of varying nationalities, film buffs remember her best as the gypsy woman who teaches poor Lon Chaney the werewolf rhyme in "The Wolf Man". She was twice Oscar-nominated -- for her roles in Dodsworth and Love Affair.  She was tragically burned to death in her Los Angeles apartment.  

(Source: available at Amazon Quinlan's Illustrated Dictionary of Film Character Actors).

HONORS and AWARDS:

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Although Ouspenskaya was nominated for two Oscars, she never won a competitive Academy Award.

Academy Awards

YearAwardFilm nameRoleResult
1936Best Supporting ActressDodsworth (1936)Baroness von ObersdorfNominated
1939Best Supporting ActressLove Affair (1939)Grandmother, Mme. MarnayNominated
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BlogHub Articles:

Russia in Classic Film blogathon:

By Caftan Woman on Mar 8, 2015 From Caftan Woman

as featured in 1940s Beyond Tomorrow July 29, 1876 - December 3, 1949 The Russia in Classic Film Blogathon is being hosted by Fritzi of Movies, Silently and sponsored by The House of Mystery on DVD by Flicker Alley. This fascinating topic runs from March 8 - 10th. Internatio... Read full article


Supporting Players:

By Amanda Garrett on Feb 4, 2015 From Old Hollywood Films

Russian actress is beloved by generations of horror film fans for her role as the Gypsy woman in The Wolf Man (1941), but for two decades she was one of old Hollywood's most respected character actors. Ouspenskaya was probably born on July 29, 1876, (there are some discrepancies... Read full article


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Maria Ouspenskaya Quotes:

Maleva: He is not insane. He simply wants to die.


Maharani: [Last lines, spoken to Major Safti, who is assuming leadership of Ranchipur] The time is here, Rama. Your people are waiting.


Madame Marie von Eln: I only know that you have to judge people by what you find them to be and not by what other people say they are.


read more quotes from Maria Ouspenskaya...



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Maria Ouspenskaya Facts
Is portrayed by Celia Lovsky in Harlow (1965/II)

Taught acting at New York's American Laboratory Theatre in the 20s until forming her own acting school, the Maria Ouspenskaya School of Dramatic Arts, in 1929. She moved the studio to Hollywood in the late 30s when her film career began to flourish. Some of her more famous students included John Garfield and acting gurus Stella Adler and Lee Strasberg.

Studied opera in both Warsaw and Moscow but switched acting and began studying at the Adasheff's School of Drama at the age of 30.

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