Betsy Blair

Betsy Blair

Blacklisted because of her left-wing sympathies, although she never actually joined the Communist Party. She wanted to join, but the Party decided that she was more useful as the wife of "liberal, progressive" Gene Kelly. Nonetheless, she was blacklisted despite an Academy Award nomination for Marty (1955). She later transplanted herself to England for a long period. Played Polly Draper's character's mother on "thirtysomething" (1987) originally, but Lois Smith took over the role later for reasons unknown.

Chose a book of song lyrics and an ice cream maker as her book and luxury, respectively, as a guest on BBC Radio 4's Desert Island Discs (broadcast 17 June 2005). Her records included Gene Kelly's "I Got Rhythm," Jimmy Durante's "Someone To Love," and a song from "Porgy and Bess.".

Fluent in French.

Had a daughter, Kerry Kelly, born in 1942 with Gene Kelly.

Member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (Actors Branch).

Member of the jury at the Berlin International Film Festival in 1980.

Played "Old Laura Brown" in The Hours (2002). The director and producer believed that people would not recognize the character. Julianne Moore, who played "Young Laura Brown", re-shot her scenes with age makeup.

Upon her death she was cremated at Golders Green Crematorium in London, England. Her ashes are currently in possession of her daughter.