Polly Walters (Polly Walters)

Polly Walters

Actress. She trained as a dancer and made her way to Broadway, appearing in several productions during the late 1920s. Then came a stage stint as Eddie Cantor’s straight woman before Warner Bros. signed her to a contract in 1931. At Warner’s, she appeared in three James Cagney films — “Taxi,” “Smart Money” and “Blonde Crazy.” In “Blonde Crazy,” she plays a hotel maid who warns another maid — the film’s female lead, Joan Blondell — to stay away from Cagney, as a bellhop who knows all the angles. She also appeared in Warner films with Douglas Fairbanks Jr. (“Union Depot”), Loretta Young (“Play-Girl”), Edward G. Robinson (“Five Star Final”) and Warren William (“The Mouthpiece” and “Beauty and the Boss”). For the most part, her Warner roles were small parts. It wasn’t until she was lent out to other studios that she played roles that were actually important to the plot. In the 1932 RKO film “Young Bride,” for instance, she is Daisy, the streetwise best friend of innocent heroine Allie (Helen Twelvetrees). They work together as librarians, and Daisy introduces Allie to no good Charlie (Eric Linden). Allie ends up marrying Charlie while Daisy ends up with Pete (Cliff “Ukelele Ike” Edwards), and doing lots of partying. Then in one of her last films, Frank Capra’s “American Madness,” released by Columbia the same year, Aunt Polly’s switchboard operator character starts the gossip that threatens to bring down a bank headed by honest Thomas Dickson (Walter Huston). After appearances in only 17 films, she left Hollywood in 1933 and went back to Broadway, appearing in a production called “She Loves Me Not” with Burgess Meredith. From 1936-37 she was on stage in “Red, Hot and Blue” with Jimmy Durante, Ethel Merman and a young Bob Hope. Then came roles in plays that ran only a few performances — her last work was in a 1942 production called “The Life of Reilly”. (bio by: Diane Frangiose)

Born

  • January, 15, 1913
  • USA

Died

  • March, 03, 1994
  • USA

Cemetery

  • Woodlawn Cemetery
  • USA

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