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Edith Atwater Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (2)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Spouse (3)  | Trivia (1)

Overview (2)

Born in Chicago, Illinois, USA
Died in Los Angeles, California, USA  (cancer)

Mini Bio (1)

A respected stage actress, brunette Edith Atwater was another of those performers who never quite managed to break into films. She was trained at the American Laboratory Theatre and began her acting career at the age of eighteen. She was on Broadway from 1931, her carefully coiffed patrician looks and mature manner rather suited to playing well-bred socialites. Her first lead was in a forgotten comedy, "Springtime for Henry" (which has the singular distinction of having its title co-opted by Mel Brooks for The Producers (1967) as "Springtime for Hitler"). However, better parts were in store: leads in hit plays like "The Country Wife" (1936), "Susan and God" (1937), "State of the Union" (1945), and, her best role yet, as Maggie Cutler opposite Monty Woolley in "The Man Who Came to Dinner" (1939). Bette Davis eventually got to star in the classic film version, whereas Edith had a just few inconsequential movie bits to show for in the 30's.

She didn't make an impact on screen until her role as Henry Daniell's housekeeper Meg Cameron in Val Lewton's brilliant horror thriller The Body Snatcher (1945). Nothing of substance followed until much later, when she popped up as an indomitable, over-protective socialite mother in William Castle's lurid psycho-thriller Strait-Jacket (1964). For the most part, however, Edith was typecast in maternal roles, or as nurses or secretaries which she always played believably. More often than not, we'd see her on the small screen, often in recurring roles as in the "Barefoot in the Park" lookalike Love on a Rooftop (1966), Grace Morton in Peyton Place (1964), or as Aunt Gertrude in The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries (1977).

Edith was married to actors Hugh Marlowe and Kent Smith who both predeceased her.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: I.S.Mowis

Spouse (3)

Kent Smith (10 March 1962 - 23 April 1985) ( his death)
Joseph Allen (31 August 1951 - 1953) ( divorced)
Hugh Marlowe (18 November 1941 - 16 September 1945) ( divorced)

Trivia (1)

Atwater's three marriages were childless but she was the stepmother of Stacey Baum, daughter of Kent Smith. Baum survived her father and stepmother, who died within a year of each other.

See also

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