Women in Film: Bette Davis

Bette Davis – The First Lady of the American Screen

Bette Davis created a heroine persona on and off screen by being a liberated woman in an industry dominated by men. She could play a variety of roles ranging from powerhouse dramas to raging psychopaths. Off-screen Davis battled the studio hierarchy in order to gain equal rights for all actors. Bette Davis has been a hero of mine since I first started watching classic film when I was nine. Even after doing biography after biography, I have always found her an interesting woman on and off screen.

“This has always been a motto of mine: Attempt the impossible in order to improve your work.” – Bette Davis


1989 Wicked Stepmother
1987 The Whales of August
1986 As Summer Die
1984 Murder with Mirrors
1983 Right of Way
1982 A Piano for Mrs. Cimino
Little Gloria
1981 Family Reunion
1980 The Watcher in the Woods
White Mama
1979 Strangers: The Story of a Mother and a Daughter
1978 Death on the Nile
Return from Witch Mountain
The Dark Secret of Harvest Home
1976 Burnt Offerings
The Disappearance of Aimee
1973 Scream, Pretty Peggy
1972 The Scientific Cardplayer
Connecting Rooms
Madame Sin
The Judge and Jake Wyler
1971 Bunny O’Hare
1968 The Anniversary
1965 The Nanny
1964 Hush… Hush, Sweet Charlotte
Where Love Has Gone
The Empty Canvas
Dead Ringer
1962 Whatever Happened to Baby Jane? (Best Actress Academy Award Nominee)
1961 Pocketful of Miracles
1959 The Scapegoat
John Paul Jones
1957 Stranded
1956 Storm Center
The Catered Affair
1955 The Virgin Queen
1952 Phone Call from a Stranger
Another Man’s Poison
The Star (Best Actress Academy Award Nominee)
1951 Payment on Demand
1950 All About Eve (Best Actress Academy Award Nominee)
1949 Beyond the Forest
1948 June Bride
Winter Meeting
1946 Deception
A Stolen Life
1945 The Corn is Green
1944 Mr. Skeffington (Best Actress Academy Award Nominee)
Hollywood Canteen
1943 Old Acquaintance
Watch on the Rhine
Thank Your Lucky Stars
1942 Now, Voyager (Best Actress Academy Award Nominee)
In This Our Life
1941 The Little Foxes (Best Actress Academy Award Nominee)
The Bride Came C.O.D.
The Great Lie
The Man Who Came to Dinner
Shining Victory
1940 The Letter (Best Actress Academy Award Nominee)
All This, and Heaven Too
1939 Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex
The Old Maid
Dark Victory (Best Actress Academy Award Nominee)
Day at Santa Anita
1938 The Sisters
Jezebel (Best Actress Academy Award Winner)
1937 It’s Love I’m After
That Certain Woman
Kid Galahad
Marked Woman
1936 Satan Met a Lady
The Golden Arrow
The Petrified Forest
1935 Dangerous (Best Actress Academy Award Winner)
Special Agent
Front Page Woman
The Girl from 10th Avenue
A Dream Comes True
1934 Housewife
Of Human Bondage (Best Actress Academy Award Nominee)
Fog Over Frisco
Jimmy the Gent
Fashions of 1934
The Big Shakedown
1933 Bureau of Missing Persons
The Working Man
Parachute Jumper
20,000 Years in Sing Sing
1932 Three on a Match
Cabin in the Cotton
The Rich Are Always with Us
So Big
The Man Who Played God
Hell’s House
The Menace
The Dark Horse
1931 Waterloo Bridge
Bad Sister
Way Back Home

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