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Jane Darwell

Jane Darwell

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Also Known As: Patti Woodward Died: August 13, 1967
Born: October 15, 1879 Cause of Death: heart attack
Birth Place: Palmyra, Missouri, USA Profession: actor

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

A heavy-set character player with a hearty voice and a slightly worried expression, Jane Darwell was often cast in matronly roles. Although she played a wide variety of roles (including an unsympathetic part as one of the lynchers in the memorable "The Ox-Bow Incident" 1943) in a career spanning well over 100 credits from the early 1930s through the mid-60s, she was most typically seen as concerned, warm-hearted mothers. For many fans, Darwell will always be remembered for her towering, Oscar-winning performance as Ma Joad in John Ford's stirring adaptation of John Steinbeck's novel "The Grapes of Wrath" (1940). One of her last screen appearances was as an elderly woman seen tossing crumbs to the pigeons while Julie Andrews warbled "Feed the Birds" in "Mary Poppins" (1964).

A heavy-set character player with a hearty voice and a slightly worried expression, Jane Darwell was often cast in matronly roles. Although she played a wide variety of roles (including an unsympathetic part as one of the lynchers in the memorable "The Ox-Bow Incident" 1943) in a career spanning well over 100 credits from the early 1930s through the mid-60s, she was most typically seen as concerned, warm-hearted mothers. For many fans, Darwell will always be remembered for her towering, Oscar-winning performance as Ma Joad in John Ford's stirring adaptation of John Steinbeck's novel "The Grapes of Wrath" (1940). One of her last screen appearances was as an elderly woman seen tossing crumbs to the pigeons while Julie Andrews warbled "Feed the Birds" in "Mary Poppins" (1964).

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Mary Poppins (1964) The Bird Woman
2.
 Hound-Dog Man (1959) Grandma Wilson
3.
 The Last Hurrah (1958) Delia Boylan
4.
 Girls in Prison (1956) Matron Jamieson
5.
 There's Always Tomorrow (1956) Mrs. Rogers
6.
 A Life at Stake (1955) Mrs. Piltz
7.
 Hit the Deck (1955) Jenny
8.
 The Sun Shines Bright (1953) Mrs. Aurora Ratchitt
9.
 The Bigamist (1953) Mrs. Connelley
10.
 Affair with a Stranger (1953) Ma Stanton
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1906:
Made stage debut
1913:
Made film acting debut at age 33 in the silent "Head Hunters"
:
Featured in dozens of silent films
1914:
Acted in Cecil B DeMille's "Rose of the Rancho" and "The Only Son"
1914:
Starred in the suspenseful silent "The Master Mind"
1915:
Last film for 15 years, "The Goose Girl"
1930:
Played the kindhearted Widow Douglas alongside Jackie Coogan's "Tom Sawyer"
1931:
Reprised role of Widow Douglas in the follow up "Huckleberry Finn"
1934:
Was featured alongside Shirley Temple in "Bright Eyes" and "Change of Heart"
1935:
Co-starred with Temple as a matchmaking matron in "Curly Top"
1936:
Featured in the Shirley Temple films "Captain January" and "The Poor Little Rich Girl"
1938:
Final collaboration with Temple, "Little Miss Broadway"
1939:
Had a featured role as the strong-willed, ill-fated mother of "Jesse James"
1939:
Acted in "Gone With the Wind"
1940:
Played the indomitable Ma Joad in "The Grapes of Wrath"; won Best Supporting Actress Oscar
1941:
Featured in "The Devil and Daniel Webster"
1943:
Gave a powerful performance as one of the lynchers in "The Ox-Bow Incident"
1945:
Played the titular skipper in "Captain Tugboat Annie"
1946:
Reteamed with John Ford and Henry Fonda in the western "My Darling Clementine"
1950:
Played the isolation matron in John Cromwell's women in prison drama "Caged", starring Eleanor Parker
1956:
Had a featured guest role in the TV series "The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin" (ABC)
1958:
Reteamed with John Carradine and John Ford on "The Last Hurrah"
:
Guested on several episodes of the popular western TV series "Wagon Train" (NBC)
1964:
Final screen role, the beloved Bird Woman in "Mary Poppins"
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

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