Judy Holliday


Actor
Judy Holliday

About

Also Known As
Judith Tuvim, Judy Tuvim
Birth Place
New York City, New York, USA
Born
June 21, 1921
Died
June 07, 1965
Cause of Death
Cancer

Biography

This spirited, intelligent actress of stage and screen played variations of the squeaky-voiced 'dumb blonde' role in a number of breezy comedies of the 1940s and 50s. Under her own name, Judith Tuvim, she formed a comedy troupe called "The Revuers," with Betty Comden and Adolph Green. This led to bits in the films "Winged Victory" and "Greenwich Village" (both 1944) and "Something for th...

Photos & Videos

Bells Are Ringing - Series of Publicity Stills
Phffft - Movie Poster
Born Yesterday - Movie Posters

Family & Companions

David Oppenheim
Husband
Musician, educator. Married on January 5, 1948; filed for divorce in 1957; divorced on March 1, 1958; for a number of years was the dean of the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University; left in the early 1990s.
Sydney Chaplin
Companion
Actor, singer. Involved in 1956.
Gerry Mulligan
Companion
Jazz musician, composer. Involved in early 1960s.

Bibliography

"Judy Holliday: An Intimate Life Story"
Gary Carey, Seaview Books (1982)
"Judy Holliday"
Will Holtzman

Biography

This spirited, intelligent actress of stage and screen played variations of the squeaky-voiced 'dumb blonde' role in a number of breezy comedies of the 1940s and 50s. Under her own name, Judith Tuvim, she formed a comedy troupe called "The Revuers," with Betty Comden and Adolph Green. This led to bits in the films "Winged Victory" and "Greenwich Village" (both 1944) and "Something for the Boys" (1945). But it took two Broadway shows, "Kiss Them for Me" and, notably, as the intellectually ambitious moll in "Born Yesterday," to make the newly-renamed Judy Holliday a star.

She returned to films with a memorable supporting role in the Spencer Tracy-Katharine Hepburn comedy, "Adam's Rib" (1949), then vaulted to stardom the following year when she recreated her stage triumph of "Born Yesterday" in George Cukor's film adaptation. As the airheaded mistress of a shady and rather dull-witted tycoon who turns the tables on him once she's educated, Holliday won an Oscar as Best Actress of 1950 (beating out Gloria Swanson in "Sunset Boulevard" and Bette Davis and Anne Baxter in "All About Eve").

For the rest of the 50s, signed with Columbia, Holliday made a handful of films, delighting audiences as ditzy but surprisingly shrewd types in "The Marrying Kind" (1952), the delightful media satire "It Should Happen to You" and "Phfft!" (both 1953), "The Solid Gold Cadillac" and "Full of Life" (both 1956). Holliday's last film was recreating her stage role in the musical "Bells Are Ringing" (1960). She returned to the stage in the straight play "Laurette" (Taylor) and the musical "Hot Spot" (1952). A heavy smoker, Holliday died of throat cancer in 1965 at the age of 43.

Life Events

1938

Rejected by Yale; went to work for Mercury Theater as a switchboard operator

1940

Co-founded, made stage acting debut with "The Revuers" cabaret group, featuring Adolph Green and Betty Comden, Al Hammer and John Frank

1944

The Revuers moved to L.A.

1944

Began in feature films with roles in "Greenwich Village", "Something for the Boys" and "Winged Victory"

1945

Broadway debut, "Kiss Them for Me", playing the first of her signature "dumb blonde" roles

1946

Breakthrough stage role replacing Jean Arthur as Billie Dawn in "Born Yesterday"

1949

Returned to films to play a supporting role in "Adam's Rib"

1950

First starring role in films, "Born Yesterday"; won Best Actress Oscar

1951

Starred in "Dream Girl" on Broadway

1952

Signed with Columbia

1952

Called to testify before HUAC

1954

Co-starred with Jack Lemmon in "It Should Happen to You"

1956

Returned to Broadway as the lead in the musical "Bells Are Ringing"; won Tony Award

1956

Starred in "The Solid Gold Cadillac"

1960

Last film, recreating stage role in "Bells Are Ringing"

1962

Final Broadway show, "Hot Spot"

Photo Collections

Bells Are Ringing - Series of Publicity Stills
Here is a group of Publicity Stills from Bells Are Ringing (1960), featuring Judy Holliday and Dean Martin in a series of gag telephone shots. Publicity stills were specially-posed photos, usually taken off the set, for purposes of publicity or reference for promotional artwork.
Phffft - Movie Poster
Here is the American one-sheet movie poster for Columbia's Phffft (1954), starring Judy Holliday and Jack Lemmon. One-sheets measured 27x41 inches, and were the poster style most commonly used in theaters.
Born Yesterday - Movie Posters
Here are a few original-release movie posters from Born Yesterday (1950), directed by George Cukor and starring Judy Holliday, William Holden, and Broderick Crawford.
Bells Are Ringing - Behind-the-Scenes Stills
Here are a number of photos taken behind-the-scenes during production of MGM's Bells Are Ringing (1960), starring Judy Holliday and Dean Martin, and directed by Vincente Minnelli.

Videos

Movie Clip

Adam's Rib (1949) - My Dear Husband What amounts to a gritty, Manhattan opening by director George Cukor and writers Ruth Gordon and Garson Kanin, Judy Holliday hunting down husband Tom Ewell and bimbo Jean Hagen, in the 1949 Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn hit, Adam's Rib.
Marrying Kind, The (1952) - It's A Dead One George Cukor's opening, Ruth Gordon and Garson Kanin's original script emphasizing candor over comedy, married Florence (Judy Holliday) and Chet (Aldo Ray) under the sway of Judge Carroll (Madge Kennedy), in The Marrying Kind, 1952.
Marrying Kind, The (1952) - Don't Remember No Rhumba Recounting for the divorce judge, Florence (Judy Holliday) and Chet (Aldo Ray) not agreeing about a party at her sister's and a trip to the airport, fancy sound editing, in The Marrying Kind, 1952, directed by George Cukor.
Marrying Kind, The (1952) - You Take Most People Just after her Atlantic City honeymoon, Florence (Judy Holliday) hosts friend Emily (Peggy Cass), her mother (Phyllis Povah) and affluent sister (Sheila Bond) in her Manhattan apartment, in The Marrying Kind, 1952, from Ruth Gordon and Garson Kanin's original screenplay.
Bells Are Ringing (1960) - I Met A Girl Answering-service customer Jeff (Dean Martin) is swooning over Ella (Judy Holliday), not realizing that she's the phone-lady who he thinks is a Granny, song by Betty Comden and Adolph Green, in Bells Are Ringing, 1960.
Bells Are Ringing - Perfect Relationship Answering service operator Ella (Judy Holliday) reflects on her romance with a client (Dean Martin) with "Perfect Relationship," by Betty Comden, Adolph Green and Jule Styne, in Bells Are Ringing, 1960.
It Should Happen To You (1954) - My Right Arm Shortly after their chance meeting, film-maker Pete (Jack Lemmon) and newly-unemployed model Gladys (Judy Holliday) in Columbus Circle, where she fantasizes, in It Should Happen To You, 1954.
It Should Happen To You (1954) - Are You Her? Casually glancing at her billboard, Gladys (Judy Holliday) and Pete (Jack Lemmon) experience her first sighting as a celebrity, inside Macy's, in George Cukor's It Should Happen To You, 1954.
It Should Happen To You (1954) - Open, Nobody, That's Who! The opening to the George Cukor-directed and Garson Kanin-scripted contemplation on celebrity, It Should Happen To You, 1954, starring Judy Holliday, Jack Lemmon, and writer Heywood Hale Broun as a bum in the park.
It Should Happen To You (1954) - And Furthermore! As cynical suitor Adams (Peter Lawford) departs, neighbor Pete (Jack Lemmon) decides he has misgivings about Gladys (Judy Holliday) and her billboard, in George Cukor's It Should Happen To You, 1954.
Thousand Clowns, A (1965) - People Going To Work Director Fred Coe emphatic with location shots, introducing Jason Robards, straight from his Broadway performance as free-spirited New York writer Murray, and Barry Gordon as his prodigy nephew, in A Thousand Clowns, 1965, from Herb Gardner's hit play.
Phffft (1954) - He Stooped To Kill The opening scene, Mark Robson directing from this slightly less cynical work by playwright and screenwriter George Axelrod, Jack Lemmon and Judy Holliday as young soon-to-be-ex marrieds Robert and Nina, in Phffft, 1954.

Trailer

Promo

Family

Abraham Tuvim
Father
Fundraiser. Divorced from Holliday's mother c. 1928.
Helen Tuvim
Mother
Music teacher. Divorced from Holliday's father c. 1928.
Jonathan Oppenheim
Son
Editor. Born on November 10, 1952; edited films like "Paris Is Burning", "Streetwise" and others.

Companions

David Oppenheim
Husband
Musician, educator. Married on January 5, 1948; filed for divorce in 1957; divorced on March 1, 1958; for a number of years was the dean of the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University; left in the early 1990s.
Sydney Chaplin
Companion
Actor, singer. Involved in 1956.
Gerry Mulligan
Companion
Jazz musician, composer. Involved in early 1960s.

Bibliography

"Judy Holliday: An Intimate Life Story"
Gary Carey, Seaview Books (1982)
"Judy Holliday"
Will Holtzman