Gertrude Astor - Rotten Tomatoes

Gertrude Astor

Highest Rated:   100% Hold Back the Dawn (1941)
Lowest Rated:   75% A Place in the Sun (1951)
Birthday:  
Birthplace:   Not Available
Gertrude Astor did so much work in Hollywood in so many different acting capacities that it's not simple or easy to characterize her career. Born in Lakewood, OH, she joined a stock company at age 13, in the year 1900, and worked on showboats during that era. She played in vaudeville as well, and made her movie debut in 1914 as a contract player at Universal. She was an accomplished rider, which got her a lot of work as a stuntwoman, sometimes in conjunction with a young Maine-born actor named John Ford in pictures directed by the latter's brother, Francis Ford. But Astor soon moved into serious acting roles; a tall, statuesque, angular woman, she frequently towered over the leading men of the era, and was, thus, ideal as a foil in comedies of the 1910s and '20s, playing aristocrats, gold diggers, and the heroine's best friend (had the character of Brenda Starr existed that far back, she'd have been perfect playing Hank O'Hair, her crusty female editor). Astor was the vamp who plants stolen money on Harry Langdon in The Strong Man (1926), Laura La Plante's wisecracking traveling companion in The Cat and the Canary (1927), and the gold digger who got her hooks into Otis Harlan (as well as attracting the attention of fellow sailor Eddie Gribbon) in Dames Ahoy. When talkies came in, Astor's deep, throaty voice assured her steady work in character parts, still mostly in comedy. Her roles weren't huge, but she worked prolifically at Hal Roach studios with such headliners as Laurel and Hardy, in the Our Gang shorts, and especially with Charley Chase, and also worked at Columbia Pictures' short subjects unit. Astor's specialty at this time was outraged dignity; she was forever declaring, "I've never been so embarrassed in all my life!" and stalking out of a slapstick situation, usually with a comedy prop (a balloon, a folding chairs, a cream puff) affixed to her posterior. Astor worked regularly into the early '60s; she was briefly glimpsed as the first murder victim in the Sherlock Holmes adventure The Scarlet Claw (1944) and was among the ranks of dress extras in Around the World in 80 Days (1956). Her longtime friend John Ford also gave her roles in his feature films right into the early '60s, culminating with her appearance in The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance. Gertrude Astor remained alert and quick-witted into her eighties, cheerfully sharing her memories of the glory days of comedy short subjects with fans and film historians. And in a town that can scarcely remember last year's studio presidents, in 1975, when she was 87 years old, Astor was given a party at Universal, where she was honored by a gathering of old friends, including the directors George Cukor, Allan Dwan, and Henry Hathaway. She passed away suddenly and peacefully on the day of her 90th birthday in 1977.

Highest Rated Movies

Filmography

MOVIES

RATING TITLE CREDIT YEAR
93% The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance
  • Actor
1962
No Score Yet All in a Night's Work
  • Customer
1961
No Score Yet The Oklahoman
  • Woman
1957
No Score Yet At Gunpoint (Gunpoint!)
  • Woman
1955
No Score Yet Daddy Long Legs
  • Woman
1955
80% Angel Face
  • Matron
1952
No Score Yet Paula
  • Mrs. Brown
1952
75% A Place in the Sun
  • Woman
1951
77% When Worlds Collide
  • Traveler
1951
98% Sunset Boulevard
  • Courtier
1950
No Score Yet Montana
  • Woman
1950
No Score Yet The Story of Seabiscuit
  • Wife
1949
No Score Yet Jolson Sings Again
  • (uncredited)
1949
No Score Yet The File on Thelma Jordon
  • Juror
1949
No Score Yet Sitting Pretty
  • Woman
1948
No Score Yet My Dear Secretary
  • Miss Gee
1948
No Score Yet Sister Kenny
  • Doctor (uncredited)
1946
No Score Yet Dragonwyck
  • Nurse
1946
No Score Yet Dick Tracy, Detective
  • Woman
1945
No Score Yet The Scarlet Claw
  • Woman
1944
No Score Yet Great Guy
  • Party Guest
1942
No Score Yet Lady for a Night
  • Woman
1942
No Score Yet Moontide
  • Woman
1942
100% Hold Back the Dawn
  • Young Woman at Climax Bar
1941
No Score Yet Misbehaving Husbands
  • Gossiping Friend
1940
91% The Women
  • Nurse
1939
No Score Yet All Over Town
  • Mamie
1937
100% Easy Living
  • Saleswoman
1937
No Score Yet Our Relations
  • Extra in Pirate's Club
1936
No Score Yet Postal Inspector
  • Woman with Drum Sticks
1936
No Score Yet His Brother's Wife
  • Actor
1936
100% San Francisco
  • Drunk's Girl
1936
No Score Yet The Milky Way
  • Woman
1936
No Score Yet Dante's Inferno
  • Concessionaires' Wife
1935
No Score Yet No More Ladies
  • Nightclub Extra
1935
No Score Yet Northern Frontier
  • Mae
1935
No Score Yet Washee Ironee
  • Actor
1934
No Score Yet Guilty Parents
  • Marie
1934
No Score Yet Now I'll Tell
  • Freddie's Wife
1934
No Score Yet After Midnight
  • Harriet Naisson
1933
No Score Yet They Never Come Back
  • Kate
1932
No Score Yet Be Yourself
  • Lillian Thorpe
1930
No Score Yet Dames Ahoy
  • The Blonde
1930
No Score Yet The Cohens and Kellys in Paris
  • Paulette
1928
93% The Cat and the Canary
  • Cecily Young
1927
No Score Yet Cheerful Fraud
  • Rose
1927
No Score Yet The Strong Man
  • Gold Tooth
1926
No Score Yet Kiki
  • Paulette
1926
No Score Yet Behind the Front
  • French Barmaid
1926
100% Beyond the Rocks
  • Morella Winmarleigh
1922
No Score Yet Through the Back Door
  • Hortense
1921
No Score Yet Through The Backdoor
  • Hortense Reeves
1921
No Score Yet The Wicked Darling
  • Adele Hoyt
1919

Quotes from Gertrude Astor's Characters

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