Madeleine Sherwood

Madeleine Sherwood

Highest Rated: 97% Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958)

Lowest Rated: 25% Hurry Sundown (1967)

Birthday: Nov 13, 1922

Birthplace: Not Available

The daughter of the dean of McGill University's school of dentistry, Madeline Thornton made her first stage appearance at age 4 in a staging of the Passion Play. At 17, Madeline married Robert Sherwood (not the playwright of the same name), who left for parts unknown after their child was born.. Compelled to fend for herself, Madeline Sherwood (as she now billed herself) opted to stay in the theatre, working with the Montreal Repertory and co-starring in the popular wartime CBC radio serial Laura Lrd. And Her Daughter Terry. She moved to New York in 1949, where she studied at Yale and the Actor's Studio while appearing in dozens of live TV dramas. Sherwood made her first Broadway appearance in 1953, playing the troublemaking Abigail in Arthur Miller's The Crucible. Director Elia Kazan, impressed by her ability to convey unvarnished wickedness, wanted to cast her as James Dean's whorish mother in the 1955 film East of Eden. That role went instead to Jo Van Fleet, so Kazan cast Sherwood in the "consolation" role of the vituperative, eternally pregnant Sister Woman in the original 1956 Broadway staging of Tennessee Williams' Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. Sherwood went on to repeat this role in the 1958 filmization of Streetcar Named Desire, and later played Miss Lucy in another Williams cinemadaptation, Sweet Bird of Youth (1963). Her television credits of the 1960s include stints on several soap operas, and a three-year hitch as the remonstrative Mother Superior on the Sally Field sitcom The Flying Nun (1967-70). As was the case with many "professional villains," Madeline Sherwood was anything but nasty and self-centered in real life. Her activities on behalf of the Civil Rights movement landed her in a Southern jail in 1962, a fact which forever remained a source of pride for her. And after undergoing therapy in the 1960s (playing one villainess after another had finally taken its toll), Madeline Sherwood became so fascinated with psychiatric work that, from 1970 through 1971, she studied at the GROW institute to become a psychotherapist and group counselor.

Highest Rated Movies



No Score Yet An Unremarkable Life Actor 1989
No Score Yet Silence Like Glass Grandmother 1989
No Score Yet Broken Vows Mrs. Chase 1986
No Score Yet Nobody's Child Nurse Rhonda 1986
62% Teachers Grace 1984
No Score Yet Resurrection Ruth 1980
82% The Changeling Mrs. Norman 1980
No Score Yet Wicked, Wicked Lenore Karadyne 1973
25% Hurry Sundown Eula Purcell 1967
75% Sweet Bird of Youth Miss Lucy 1962
No Score Yet Parrish Addie 1961
97% Cat on a Hot Tin Roof Mae Pollitt 1958
94% Baby Doll Nurse in Doctor's Office 1956


No Score Yet Bonanza
Vella Owens 1970
No Score Yet The Fugitive
Marybeth Thompson Mrs. Ammory 1964
No Score Yet Alfred Hitchcock Presents
Jackie Darby 1961


Mae Pollitt says: Hush yourself Big Mama

Big Mama Pollitt says: Hush yourself yourself Sister woman, I want Brick, where's Brick.