Olive Blakeney (Olive Blakeney)

Olive Blakeney

Olive Blakeney

Brown-haired, articulate American character actress who became a prolific performer on both sides of the Atlantic. Schooled in her native Kentucky she subsequently attended drama classes. Having relocated to London, she soon found steady employment in repertory theatre and eventually made her motion picture debut in the comedy Her Imaginary Lover (1933). Along with her in the cast was future husband, actor Bernard Nedell. Signed under long-term contract by Warner Brothers/First National, Olive was then given star billing in other romantic farces made at Teddington Studios, including Leave It to Blanche (1934) (title role) and Mr. What’s-His-Name? (1935) . Upon her return to the U.S., she continued to commute between stage (including Broadway) and screen but found meatier parts harder to come by. After spending years top cast as genteel socialites in British second features, it was now down to minor roles in, admittedly, A-grade productions like Two-Faced Woman (1941), Random Harvest (1942) and Leave Her to Heaven (1945). Before long, however, Olive secured a regular niche as Alice Aldrich (mother to Henry, played by Jimmy Lydon — whose mother-in-law she was in real life) in Paramount’s popular Aldrich Family series. As to her remaining career: that was spent playing an assortment of housekeepers and dowagers, from 1952 almost entirely as a guest in early TV anthology dramas.

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Born

  • August, 21, 1894
  • Newport, Kentucky

Died

  • October, 21, 1959
  • Los Angeles, California

Cemetery

  • Forest Lawn Memorial Park (Glendale)
  • Glendale, California

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