Image of Ann Rutherford

Ann Rutherford

Ann Rutherford was born in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. The daughter of a former Metropolitan Opera singer, John Rutherford, and her actress mother, Lillian Mansfield, was destined for show business. Not long after her birth, her family moved to California, where she made her stage debut in 1925. Ann appeared in many plays and on radio for the next nine years before making her first screen appearance in Waterfront Lady (1935). Ann's talent was readily apparent, and she was signed to three films in 1935: Waterfront Lady (1935), Melody Trail (1935), and The Fighting Marines (1935). By now, she was a leading lady in the fabled Westerns with two legends, John Wayne and Gene Autry. By the time Ann was 17, she inked a deal with MGM, where she would gain the status of superstar for her portrayal of "Polly Benedict" in the popular "Andy Hardy" series with Mickey Rooney. Ann's first role as "Polly" was in 1938, in You're Only Young Once (1937). Three more Hardy films were produced that same year: Out West with the Hardys (1938), Love Finds Andy Hardy (1938), and Judge Hardy's Children (1938). Ann found time to play in other productions, too. One that is still loved today is the Charles Dickens' classic A Christmas Carol (1938), in which she played the sweet role of the Spirit of Christmas Past. In 1939, Ann played the role of "Annie Hawks" in Of Human Hearts (1938) in addition to three more Andy Hardy films. But that year also saw Ann land a role in the most popular film in film history. She played "Careen O'Hara," Scarlett's little sister, in Gone with the Wind (1939). Plenty of fans of the Andy Hardy series went to see it just for Ann. The film was unquestionably a super hit. She then resumed making other movies. While working for MGM, Ann, along with the other stars, was under the watchful eye of movie mogul Louis B. Mayer. The bottom line was profit, and Mayer kept performers' salaries minimized as much as possible. Most tried to get raises and failed. Even Mickey Rooney was decidedly underpaid during his glory years at MGM. But not Ann Rutherford. When she asked for a raise, she took out her bankbook and, showing him the amount it contained, told Mayer she had promised her mother a new house. Ann got her raise. In 1942 at the age of 22, Ann appeared in her last Andy Hardy film, Andy Hardy's Double Life (1942). She then left MGM and freelanced her talent. Ann was still in demand. In 1943, she appeared in Happy Land (1943), but it was a little later in her career when she appeared in two big hits. In 1947, she played Gertrude Griswold in The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (1947) and Donna Elena in Adventures of Don Juan (1948) in 1948. After that, Ann appeared in several TV programs and didn't return to the silver screen until 1972, in They Only Kill Their Masters (1972). Her last role came in 1976 in the dismal Won Ton Ton: The Dog Who Saved Hollywood (1976), whereupon she retired. Ann was approached to play the older Rose in 1998's mega hit Titanic (1997) but turned it down. She happily enjoyed her retirement being constantly deluged with fan mail and granting several interviews and appearances. She died at her Beverly Hills home on June 11, 2012 with her close friend Anne Jeffreys by her side. She was 94 years old.


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Born:
Nov 2, 1917 In Vancouver British Columbia Canada
Movie/TV Credits:
68
First Appeared:
In the movie Student Tour 1934-10-05
Latest Project:
Movie Hollywood Out-takes and Rare Footage 1983-02-25
Known For
Poster of Andy Hardy's Dilemma: A Lesson in Mathematics... and Other Things
Poster of Judge Hardy's Children
Poster of Doughnuts and Society
Poster of The Oregon Trail
Filmography

Hollywood Out-takes and Rare Footage (1983)

Documentary Comedy
Movie
as Herself (archive footage)
7 1 votes

The Bob Newhart Show (1972)

Comedy
Series
as Unknown
8 16 votes

They Only Kill Their Masters (1972)

Mystery Romance Thriller
Movie
as Gloria

The Donna Reed Show (1958)

Comedy
Series
as Unknown
6.7 3 votes

Panic! (1957)

Drama
Series
as Unknown

Perry Mason (1957)

Mystery Drama Crime Family
Series
as Unknown
7.8 21 votes

Climax! (1954)

Drama Mystery
Series
as Unknown
6 1 votes

General Electric Theater (1953)

Comedy Drama
Series
as Unknown

Robert Montgomery Presents (1950)

Drama
Series
as Unknown

Operation Haylift (1950)

Movie
as Clara Masters

Suspense (1949)

Drama
Series
as Unknown
6 1 votes

Adventures of Don Juan (1948)

Action Adventure Comedy Romance
Movie
as Donna Elena
5.9 5 votes

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (1947)

Comedy Fantasy Romance
Movie
as Gertrude Griswold
6.8 28 votes

The Madonna's Secret (1946)

Drama Thriller Mystery
Movie
as Linda 'Morgan' North
4.5 1 votes

Inside Job (1946)

Crime Drama
Movie
as Claire Norton
6 2 votes

Murder in the Music Hall (1946)

Crime Music Mystery
Movie
as Gracie
3.8 2 votes

Two O'Clock Courage (1945)

Crime Drama Mystery
Movie
as Patty Mitchell
4.5 3 votes

Bedside Manner (1945)

Comedy Romance
Movie
as Lola Cross
4 2 votes

Bermuda Mystery (1944)

Mystery
Movie
as Constance Martin

Happy Land (1943)

Drama Romance War
Movie
as Lenore Prentiss
6.5 1 votes

Whistling in Brooklyn (1943)

Comedy Crime Mystery Romance
Movie
as Carol Lambert

The Courtship of Andy Hardy (1942)

Comedy
Movie
as Polly Benedict
6.2 3 votes

Orchestra Wives (1942)

Drama Music Romance
Movie
as Connie Ward Abbot
4.5 3 votes

This Time for Keeps (1942)

Comedy Romance
Movie
as Katherine 'Kit' White

Whistling in Dixie (1942)

Comedy Mystery Crime
Movie
as Carol Lambert

Andy Hardy's Double Life (1942)

Comedy Family Romance
Movie
as Polly Benedict
6.8 2 votes

Washington Melodrama (1941)

Drama
Movie
as Laurie Claymore

Andy Hardy's Private Secretary (1941)

Comedy Romance
Movie
as Polly Benedict
8 1 votes

Whistling in the Dark (1941)

Comedy Mystery
Movie
as Carol Lambert
6.3 2 votes

Life Begins for Andy Hardy (1941)

Comedy Romance
Movie
as Polly Benedict
6.3 3 votes

Badlands Of Dakota (1941)

Romance Western
Movie
as Anne Grayson
6 2 votes

Andy Hardy Meets Debutante (1940)

Comedy Family Romance
Movie
as Polly Benedict
7 1 votes

Andy Hardy's Dilemma: A Lesson in Mathematics... and Other Things (1940)

Comedy
Movie
as Polly Benedict (uncredited)

The Ghost Comes Home (1940)

Romance Comedy Drama
Movie
as Billie Adams

Pride and Prejudice (1940)

Drama Romance
Movie
as Lydia Bennet
7.4 23 votes

Keeping Company (1940)

Drama Family Comedy
Movie
as Mary Thomas
7.5 1 votes

Wyoming (1940)

Western
Movie
as Lucy Kincaid

Angel of Mercy (1939)

Drama History
Movie
as Sister of Dead Soldier

Four Girls in White (1939)

Comedy Drama
Movie
as Patricia 'Pat' Page

Andy Hardy Gets Spring Fever (1939)

Comedy Romance
Movie
as Polly Benedict
6.7 3 votes

The Hardys Ride High (1939)

Comedy
Movie
as Polly Benedict
6.5 2 votes

These Glamour Girls (1939)

Comedy Drama
Movie
as Mary Rose Wilston
5.5 3 votes

Judge Hardy and Son (1939)

Comedy
Movie
as Polly Benedict
6.3 2 votes

Gone with the Wind (1939)

Drama Romance War
Movie
as Carreen O'Hara
7.5 769 votes

Dancing Co-Ed (1939)

Comedy Romance
Movie
as Eve
8 1 votes

Judge Hardy's Children (1938)

Comedy
Movie
as Polly Benedict
6.3 2 votes

Of Human Hearts (1938)

Drama Western
Movie
as Annie Hawks
2.3 3 votes

Love Finds Andy Hardy (1938)

Comedy Romance
Movie
as Polly Benedict
6.5 7 votes

Dramatic School (1938)

Drama Romance
Movie
as Yvonne

Out West with the Hardys (1938)

Comedy
Movie
as Polly Benedict
7 1 votes

A Christmas Carol (1938)

Fantasy Drama Family
Movie
as Spirit of Christmas Past
6.9 27 votes

Espionage (1937)

Drama
Movie
as Train Passenger

Carnival in Paris (1937)

Music Comedy
Movie
as Lisette

You're Only Young Once (1937)

Comedy Romance
Movie
as Polly Benedict
6.8 2 votes

Public Cowboy No. 1 (1937)

Western
Movie
as Helen Morgan

The Devil Is Driving (1937)

Drama
Movie
as Kitty Wooster

The Lawless Nineties (1936)

Western
Movie
as Janet Carter
5.8 2 votes

The Oregon Trail (1936)

Western
Movie
as Anne Ridgeley

Comin' 'Round the Mountain (1936)

Western
Movie
as Dolores Moreno

Doughnuts and Society (1936)

Comedy Romance
Movie
as Joan Dugan

The Harvester (1936)

Comedy
Movie
as Ruth Jameson

Down to the Sea (1936)

Drama
Movie
as Helen Pappas
4 1 votes

The Lonely Trail (1936)

Drama Western
Movie
as Virginia Terry
4.3 3 votes

Waterfront Lady (1935)

Crime Drama
Movie
as Joan O'Brien

Melody Trail (1935)

Western
Movie
as Millicent Thomas
4 1 votes

The Singing Vagabond (1935)

Western
Movie
as Lettie Morgan

The Fighting Marines (1935)

Action
Movie
as Frances Schiller

Student Tour (1934)

Music
Movie
as Student