Job Actress
Years active 1937-1953
Known for Meddlesome matrons, monstrous matriarchs
Top Roles Sophie Bellop, Mme. Dilyovska, Tiare Johnson, Mrs. Amanda Roanoke, Madame Elise Chavez
Top GenresComedy, Romance, Drama, Musical, Film Adaptation, Crime
Top TopicsBook-Based, Romance (Comic), Romance (Drama)
Top Collaborators (Producer), (Director), (Producer), (Producer)
Shares birthday with Wallace Reid, John Williams, Harvey Lembeck  see more..

Florence Bates Overview:

Character actress, Florence Bates, was born Florence Rabe on Apr 15, 1888 in San Antonio, TX. Bates appeared in over 75 film and television roles. Her best known films include Mr. Lucky, Since You Went Away, Saratoga Trunk, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, I Remember Mama, Portrait of Jennie, A Letter to Three Wives, On the Town and Rebecca. Bates died at the age of 65 on Jan 31, 1954 in Burbank, CA .


Formidable was about the only word for the dominant, galleon-shaped Florence Bates who was much in demand in the 1940s. Her matrons were meddlesome and her matriarchs monstrous. She was once a lawyer (how the opposition must have suffered), but her Edythe Van Hopper in Alfred Hitchcock's "Rebecca" set her galloping through a gallery of gorgons and gargoyles. Died from a heart attack.

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



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Florence Bates Quotes:

Sophie Bellop: [to Clio] I know my way around this world. I know what it is to be very rich, and I know what it is to be very poor. I've lived on nothing for years... in luxury!

Sophie Bellop: Here's your ring. Hang onto your jewelry. I always say it's a woman's best friend.

Innkeeper: After great effort, I, Hercules Schneider, have found you the only carriage in Pecs. Of course, the horses may not be the best in the world...
Countess Mathilde: Can they walk?
Innkeeper: Oh, yes, Madam!
Countess Mathilde: That's all that's necessary. Point them to Paris and start them moving.
Innkeeper: Tonight, madam?
Countess Mathilde: Certainly, tonight!
Innkeeper: But it's dark!
Countess Mathilde: You don't say. It usually is at night.

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Florence Bates Facts
She was forever knitting, even during breaks when filming.

Became the first woman lawyer in Texas in 1914 at the age of 26.

Screen, stage, television actress, and attorney.

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