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Laura Hope Crews

Laura Hope Crews
Laura Hope Crews circa 1915 in silent films
Born (1879-12-12)December 12, 1879
San Francisco, California, U.S.
Died November 12, 1942(1942-11-12) (aged 62)
New York City, New York, U.S.
Occupation Actress
Years active 1884–1942

Laura Hope Crews (December 12, 1879 – November 12, 1942) was a leading actress of the American stage in the first decades of the 20th century who is best remembered today for her later work as a character actress in motion pictures of the 1930s. Her best-known film role was Aunt Pittypat in Gone with the Wind.[1]

Contents

  • Early life 1
  • Career 2
  • Death 3
  • Filmography 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6

Early life

She was the daughter of stage actress Angelena Lockwood and backstage carpenter John Thomas Crews.[2] She had three older siblings. Crews started acting at age four. Her first stage appearance was at Woodward's Garden. She stopped acting to finish school and then returned to acting in 1898.

Laura Hope Crews c.1902

Career

She appeared in plays written by A.A. Milne, who was particularly impressed by her work in his Mr. Pim Passes By. The play was a big success and ran for 232 performances. Afterwards, she began to work in productions staged by the New York Theater Guild, which had just opened. Her final stage appearance came in 1942, in the original Broadway run of Arsenic and Old Lace in which she replaced one of the original cast members. She stayed with the production for more than a year and a half on Broadway and in a touring company before she was forced to leave because of illness.

Crews also starred as Judith Bliss in the original Broadway production of Noël Coward's Hay Fever, in 1925, which she co-directed with Coward. She also appeared in The Silver Cord, written by Sidney Howard, which was produced by the New York Theater Guild in 1926 and ran for 212 performances. When The Silver Cord was not being presented, there were matinee performances of Right You Are If You Think You Are by Luigi Pirandello.

The Silver Cord was later made into a 1933 RKO movie with Crews reprising her onstage role of the mother. The film co-starred Joel McCrea, Frances Dee and Irene Dunne. In the late 1920s Crews had been hired by Gloria Swanson to help with her transition to talking pictures.

Death

Crews died in the LeRoy Sanitarium in New York City in 1942, following an illness of four months.[3] She had been admitted on October 15, suffering from a kidney ailment and was in serious condition for most of her time there. Laura Hope Crews was laid to rest at Cypress Lawn Memorial Park in Colma, California. Plot: Rose Mound, Lot 65.

Actor Earle Larimore was a relative.

Crews has a star at 6251 Hollywood Blvd on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.[4]

Filmography

Silent

  • The Fighting Hope (1915 Famous Players-Lasky/Paramount)(Extant; incomplete, BFI London)
  • Blackbirds (1915 Famous Players-Lasky/Paramount) (Extant; Library of Congress)

Sound

References

  1. ^ , July 18, 2011Oh What a Character! Part Seven: Crews ControlPoseidon's Underworld:
  2. ^ Notable American women, 1607-1950: a biographical dictionary, Volume 2 by Edward T. James, Janet Wilson James, Paul S Boyer
  3. ^ ""Laura H. Crews of Stage Dies", Page D9".  
  4. ^ "Laura Hope Crews". Walkoffame.com. 

External links

  • Laura Hope Crews photo gallery at NYP Library
  • Laura Hope Crews at the Internet Movie Database
  • Laura Hope Crews at the Internet Broadway Database
  • Laura Hope Crews as a young Shakespearean stage actress
  • Laura Hope Crews page with rare stage photographs
  • Laura Hope Crews at Find a Grave
  • Laura Hope Crews stills Univ. of Washington Sayre Collection
  • Laura Hope Crews and Leo Ditrichstein in "The Phantom Rival" (1915)
  • (1911)The HavocLaura Hope Crews in the (Univ. of Washington Sayre Collection)
  • Crews on the cover of The Theatre magazine, August 1913
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