Cathy O'Donnell


Actor
Cathy O'Donnell

About

Also Known As
Ann Steely
Birth Place
Siluria, Alabama, USA
Born
July 06, 1923
Died
April 11, 1970

Biography

Though she performed in numerous films that featured top talent both behind and in front of the camera, actress Cathy O'Donnell is best remembered for her first major part, in the Academy Award-winning post-World War II drama, "The Best Years of Our Lives." O'Donnell studied at Oklahoma City University before heading to Hollywood to pursue acting. A chance meeting with an agent led to an...

Biography

Though she performed in numerous films that featured top talent both behind and in front of the camera, actress Cathy O'Donnell is best remembered for her first major part, in the Academy Award-winning post-World War II drama, "The Best Years of Our Lives." O'Donnell studied at Oklahoma City University before heading to Hollywood to pursue acting. A chance meeting with an agent led to an introduction to film icon Samuel Goldwyn, who saw something in O'Donnell but felt she needed further training. He sent her to study at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York, urging her to lose her Southern accent. After gaining a bit of stage experience, she appeared in the Goldwyn-produced all-star ensemble picture "The Best Years of Our Lives" as the fiancée of double-amputee WWII veteran Harold Russell. Though the film was enormously successful, O'Donnell's subsequent roles didn't make her a star, despite a number of quality pictures. She played opposite Farley Granger in two classic noirs, "They Live by Night" and "Side Street." She supported Kirk Douglas in "Detective Story" and was Jimmy Stewart's love interest in "The Man from Laramie." At the tail end of the '50s, she played her last major film role, as Charlton Heston's sister in the epic "Ben-Hur."

Life Events

Photo Collections

The Miniver Story - Behind-the-Scenes Photos
Here are several photos taken behind-the-scenes during production of MGM's The Miniver Story (1950), starring Greer Garson and Walter Pidgeon.

Videos

Movie Clip

They Live By Night (1949) - They're Thieves, Just Like Us Keechie (Cathy O'Donnell) fetches Bowie (Farley Granger), injured and left behind after the jailbreak, to his fellow thieves, her uncle Chickamaw (Howard da Silva) and T-Dub (Jay C. Flippen), and her own crook father (Will Wright), the first meeting of the principals, in Nicholas Ray's They Live by Night, 1949.
Best Years Of Our Lives, The (1946) - Wanna See The Freak? Big moment for novice actor Harold Russell, in the role that won him two Academy Awards, as veteran Homer, some weeks into his return home, girlfriend Wilma (Cathy O'Donnell) insisting nothing has changed, Marlene Aames his young sister, in William Wyler's The Best Years Of Our Lives, 1946,
They Live By Night (1949) - Just A Black Sheep Bowie (Farley Granger) and Keechie (Cathy O'Donnell), now fugitives and separated from his gang, make some quick decisions when their Greyhound stops at a diner, in Nicholas Ray's They Live By Night, 1949.
They Live By Night (1949) - Who's Your Fella? Nervous escaped convict Bowie (Farley Granger), injured again in another misadventure with the gang led by her fugitive uncle, is nursed again by innocent Keechie (Cathy O'Donnell), remembering he bought a gift for her, in Nicholas Ray's They Live By Night, 1949.
They Live by Night (1949) - Opening, This Boy And This Girl The unorthodox and violent opening from the first feature directed by one of Hollywood's least conventional directors, Cathy O'Donnell with Farley Granger, then Howard da Silva and Jay C. Flippen, in Nicholas Ray's They Live By Night, 1949.
They Live By Night (1949) - You Like Your Old Man? Innocent Keechie (Cathy O'Donnell) gets friendlier with fugitive Bowie (Farley Granger) while the leader of his prison-break gang, her uncle Chickamaw (Howard da Silva), moves things along, in Nicholas Ray's directing debut, They Live By Night, 1949.
Man from Laramie, The (1955) - I Own This Town Lockhart (James Stewart) tangles with all three head men from the Waggoman Ranch in town as Dave (Alex Nicol) starts, Vic (Arthur Kennedy) takes over and Alec (Donald Crisp) settles, neighbor Kate (Aline MacMahon) rescuing, in Anthony Mann's The Man from Laramie, 1955.
Miniver Story, The - Batter Up! Clem (Walter Pidgeon) continues narration as he arrives home from the war, meeting Kay (Greer Garson), daughter Judy (Cathy O'Donnell) and giddily Americanized son Toby (James Fox), in The Miniver Story, 1950.
Ben-Hur (1959) - New Governor Tirzah (Cathy O’Donnell) knocks loose a roof tile as the governor enters Jerusalem, causing Messala (Stephen Boyd) to arrest her, Judah (Charlton Heston) and Miriam (Martha Scott) in Ben-Hur, 1959.
Side Street (1950) - That Money I Gave You... Joe (Farley Granger) sneaks into the Bellevue maternity ward to tell Ellen (Cathy O'Donnell) the bad news about the money he gave her, in Anthony Mann's Side Street, 1950.

Trailer

Bibliography