Carol Channing

Birthday: Jan 31, 1921
Birthplace: Not Available
The daughter of a Christian Science lecturer, Carol Channing endured the rigors of Bennington College for one year before dropping out to try her luck as an actress in New York. Channing made her first Broadway appearance in 1941's Never Take No for an Answer; two years later, she understudied Eve Arden in the musical hit Let's Face It. Developing her own inimitable personality -- the wide-eyed, raspy-voice soubrette who is neither as dumb nor as crazy as she seems -- she scored her first hit in the 1948 revue Lend an Ear, which won the New York Drama Critics Award. In 1949, she starred as Lorelei Lee in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, introducing the immortal golddigger's anthem "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend." She lost the Lorelei Lee role to Marilyn Monroe in the 1952 film version of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, and not without some justification: Like Bert Lahr, Fanny Brice, and other larger-than-life Broadway luminaries, Channing was simply too overpowering for the more intimate medium of film. Proof that her million-watt personality was best suited to the stage can be found in her one starring film, the unsuccessful The First Traveling Saleslady (1956). Though she remained an audience favorite in nightclub and review appearances throughout the 1950s and early '60s -- at one point, she was teamed with George Burns -- Channing would not find a Broadway vehicle to match the success of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes until 1963, when she was cast as Dolly Gallegher Levi in the blockbuster musical Hello, Dolly!. She won a Tony Award for her work in this production, repeating the role in periodic revivals and eventually toting up over 1,400 performances. Again, however, she was denied the opportunity to repeat her stage role onscreen; it was a young Barbra Streisand who starred in the 1970 film version of Hello, Dolly!. Channing was awarded an Emmy for the 1966 TV special An Evening With Carol Channing, and an Oscar nomination for her supporting performance in Thoroughly Modern Millie (1967). After co-starring in the Otto Preminger disappointment Skidoo (1969), Channing confined her big-screen activities to cartoon voice-over work (Shinbone Alley, Happily Ever After, and Thumbelina); she has also supplied voices for the animated TV series Where's Waldo?, The Addams Family, and The Magic School Bus. In 1995, Carol Channing was honored at the Tony Awards presentations with a lifetime achievement award. Channing would particupate in documentaries about Broadway and her life, like Carol Channing: Larger Than Life.

Highest Rated Movies

Filmography

MOVIES

CREDIT
74% The Outrageous Sophie Tucker Actor 2015
No Score Yet Hollywood Singing and Dancing: 1920s - The Dawn of the Hollywood Musical Actor 2008
No Score Yet Hollywood Singing and Dancing: The 1960s Actor 2008
No Score Yet Broadway's Best at Pops Actor 2007
83% Broadway: The Golden Age Actor 2004
No Score Yet Broadway: The American Musical Actor 2004
No Score Yet Broadway's Lost Treasures Actor 2003
No Score Yet The Line King: The Al Hirschfeld Story Actor 1996
No Score Yet Jerry Herman's Broadway at the Bowl Actor 1994
33% Thumbelina Ms. Fieldmouse 1994
36% Happily Ever After Muddy 1993
No Score Yet Wisecracks Actor 1993
No Score Yet George Burns: His Wit and Wisdom Actor 1988
No Score Yet Alice in Wonderland White Queen 1985
12% Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band Our Guests at Heartland 1978
No Score Yet Shinbone Alley Mehitabel 1971
No Score Yet Carol Channing and Pearl Bailey: On Broadway Actor 1969
42% Skidoo Flo Banks 1968
100% Thoroughly Modern Millie Muzzy Van Hossmere 1967
No Score Yet The First Traveling Saleslady Molly Wade 1956

TV

CREDIT
No Score Yet The Drew Carey Show
1995-2004
Herself
  • 1997
No Score Yet Touched by an Angel
1994-2003
Herself
  • 1997
No Score Yet Magnum, P.I.
1980-1988
Herself
  • 1983
100% The Muppet Show
1976-1981
Guest
  • 1980
No Score Yet The Flip Wilson Show
1970-1974
Guest
  • 1972
  • 1971
No Score Yet The Addams Family
1993
Voice

QUOTES FROM Carol Channing CHARACTERS