Edna May Oliver Overview:

Character actress, Edna May Oliver, was born Edna May Nutter on Nov 9, 1883 in Malden, MA. May Oliver died at the age of 59 on Nov 9, 1942 in Los Angeles, CA and was laid to rest in Forest Lawn Memorial Park (Glendale) Cemetery in Glendale, CA.

MINI BIO:

Edna May Oliver was one of Hollywood's invaluable 'horse-faced' character actresses. Her characters possessed arched eyebrows, a purposeful stare and a disapproving sniff -- and stood no nonsense from anyone. A delight as spinsters, schoolteachers, and sleuths in three mid-thirties who-done-its, she died from an intestinal disorder on her 59th birthday. 

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

HONORS and AWARDS:

.

Although May Oliver was nominated for one Oscar, she never won a competitive Academy Award.

Academy Awards

YearAwardFilm nameRoleResult
1939Best Supporting ActressDrums along the Mohawk (1939)Sarah McKlennarNominated
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She was honored with one star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in the category of Motion Pictures.

BlogHub Articles:

Supporting Players:

By Amanda Garrett on Apr 14, 2015 From Old Hollywood Films

Character actress played many a strong-willed matriarch in her career. Here she is as Mrs. McKlennar in Drums Along the Mohawk (1939). delighted audiences throughout the 1930s and 1940s with her witty portrayals of independent women in literary adaptations, mur... Read full article


Know Your Character Actor –

By smumcountry on Jul 20, 2013 From Smum County

July 20, 2013 by smumcounty was born Edna May Nutter in 1883 in Malden, Massachusetts, a direct descendant of the sixth President, John Quincy Adams. She left school at the age of fourteen to pursue a career on stage and found her first real success on Broadway in 1917 in Jerome Ker... Read full article


Know Your Character Actor –

By smumcountry on Jul 20, 2013 From Smum County

July 20, 2013 by smumcounty was born Edna May Nutter in 1883 in Malden, Massachusetts, a direct descendant of the sixth President, John Quincy Adams. She left school at the age of fourteen to pursue a career on stage and found her first real success on Broadway in 1917 in Jerome Ker... Read full article


Happy Birthday: !

By Dawn on Nov 9, 2010 From Noir and Chick Flicks

, was a descendant of the sixth American president, John Quincy Adams. She left school at age fourteen in order to perform on Broadway in Jerome Kern's musical comedy, Oh, Boy! (1917). Her film debut was in the film, Wife in Name Only(1923). Oliver first gained notice for her perform... Read full article


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Edna May Oliver Quotes:

Jimmy Sutton: What are you making, Phoebe?
Aunt Phoebe: Don't know yet... started making a doily, and it got away from me!


[Madame DeFarge has come looking for Lucie and the child. Miss Pross bars her way out]
Miss Pross: Oh no you don't!
Madame De Farge: Let me pass.
Miss Pross: Never! I know what you want. I know what you're after. And thank heaven I'm put here to stop you - for stop you I will!
Madame De Farge: In the name of the Republic...
Miss Pross: In the name of no one, you evil woman. You've killed many innocent people. No doubt you'll kill many more; but my ladybird you shall never touch.
Madame De Farge: No? Do you know who I am?
Miss Pross: You might - from your appearance - be the wife of Lucifer; yet you shall not get the better of me. I'm an Englishwoman! I'm your match!
Madame De Farge: Pig, get out of my way or I'll break you in pieces.
Miss Pross: Break away, then. I don't care an English tuppence for myself; but I know that the longer I keep you here... the greater hope there is for my ladybird. [they fight]


Miss Pross: Mr. Carton, the infant has expressed a desire to say good night to you.
Sydney Carton: The infant's desire shall be gratified immediately, Prossy. [he goes]
Jarvis Lorry Jr.: I suppose it's none of my business, but I wouldn't allow that fellow to handle a child of mine.
Miss Pross: As to that, you haven't got one... and from the looks of you, you're not likely to have one.


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Best Supporting Actress Oscar 1939






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Edna May Oliver on the
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Edna May Oliver Facts
Interred at Forest Lawn (Glendale), Glendale, California, USA, in the Great Mausoleum, Columbarium of Security.

In her main films her character was often that of an outspoken aunt.

Edna May Oliver was often parodied in Warner Brothers cartoons of the 30s due to her distinctive face.

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