Beatrice Benaderet (/ˌbɛnəˈdɛrət/ BEN-ə-DERR-ət; April 4, 1906 – October 13, 1968) was an American radio and television actress and voice actress. Born in New York City and raised in San Francisco, she began performing in Bay Area theatre and radio before embarking on a Hollywood career that spanned over three decades. Benaderet first specialized in voiceover work in the golden age of radio, appearing on numerous programs while working with comedians of the era such as Jack Benny, Burns and Allen, and Lucille Ball. Her expertise in dialect and characterization led to her becoming Warner Bros.' leading voice of female characters in their animated cartoons of the early 1940s through the mid-1950s.
Benaderet was then a prominent figure on television in situation comedies, first with The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show from 1950 to 1958, for which she earned two Emmy Award nominations for Best Supporting Actress. In the 1960s, she had regular roles in four series up until her death from lung cancer in 1968, including the commercial successes The Beverly Hillbillies, The Flintstones, and her best known role as Kate Bradley in Petticoat Junction. She has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame honoring her work in television.
1966 publicity photo
April 4, 1906
New York City, United States
|Died||October 13, 1968 (aged 62)|
Los Angeles, California, United States
|Resting place||Valhalla Memorial Park Cemetery, North Hollywood, Los Angeles, California|
|Education||St. Rose Academy High School|
|Occupation||Actress, voice actress|
(m. 1938; div. 1950)
(m. 1957; her death 1968)
|Children||2, including Jack Bannon|
Beatrice Benaderet was born on April 4, 1906[a][note 1] in New York City. Her mother, Margaret O'Keefe (1888–1936), was Irish-American, and her father, Samuel David Benaderet (1884–1954), a Turkish Sephardic emigrant, was a tobacconist who relocated the family from New York to San Francisco, California in 1915 after his participation in the Panama–Pacific International Exposition. The same year, he opened a smoke shop that would conduct business in the city for the next 65 years, making it the oldest such retailer in California at the time of its closure in 1980.
Benaderet studied voice and the piano at a young age, and her participation in a children's radio production of The Beggar's Opera at the age of 12 attracted the attention of the manager of radio station KGO, who invited her to join as a junior vocalist. Benaderet graduated from St. Rose Academy, a private all-girls' high school, and made her professional stage debut at sixteen, in a production of The Prince of Pilsen. She then attended the Reginald Travers School of Acting and joined his San Francisco stock company The Players' Guild, appearing in stage productions of works such as Polly, Lysistrata and Uncle Tom's Cabin.
In 1926, Benaderet joined the staff of KFRC, which was under the new ownership of Don Lee and where her duties included acting, singing, writing, and producing. Initially seeking work as a dramatic actress, she switched to comedy and performed on multiple shows in nine years with the station, in particular the Blue Monday Jamboree variety program, where her castmates included Meredith Willson, Elvia Allman, and future I Love Lucy producer Jess Oppenheimer. Benaderet honed a variety of dialects such as French, Spanish, New York English, and Yiddish, the latter from voicing a character named "Rheba Haufawitz". She additionally hosted the musical variety show Salon Moderne and gained attention for her work as a female announcer,[note 2] which had become a rarity in radio in the 1930s.
Benaderet moved to Los Angeles station KHJ in 1936. She made her network radio debut upon being hired by Orson Welles for his Mercury Theatre repertory company heard on The Campbell Playhouse. The following year she received her first big break in the industry on The Jack Benny Program, where she played Gertrude Gearshift, a wisecracking Brooklyn-accented telephone operator who gossiped about Jack Benny with her cohort Mabel Flapsaddle (Sara Berner). Intended as a one-time appearance, the pair became a recurring role starting in the 1945–46 season, and in early 1947, Benaderet and Berner momentarily took over the actual NBC switchboards in Hollywood for publicity photos. She performed in as many as five shows daily, causing her rehearsal dates to conflict with those of The Jack Benny Program and resulting in her reading live as Gertrude from a marked script she was handed upon entering the studio.
Other recurring characters Benaderet portrayed were Blanche Morton on The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show; school principal Eve Goodwin on The Great Gildersleeve; Millicent Carstairs on Fibber McGee & Molly; Gloria the maid on The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet; and Iris Atterbury on the Lucille Ball vehicle My Favorite Husband, opposite Gale Gordon. Benaderet voiced various one-time parts before joining the main cast as Iris, the neighbor and friend of Ball's character Liz Cooper. The 1950 CBS program Granby's Green Acres, a perceived spinoff of My Favorite Husband, was her one radio lead role and reunited her with Gordon as a husband and wife who abandon city life to become farmers, but it lasted only eight episodes.
Beginning in 1943, Benaderet became Warner Bros.' primary voice of adult female supporting characters for their Merrie Melodies and Looney Tunes animated shorts. Her characterizations included an obnoxious teenage bobbysox version of Little Red Riding Hood in Little Red Riding Rabbit (1944), Witch Hazel in Bewitched Bunny (1954), Tweety's owner "Granny" over several cartoons including the Academy Award-winning Tweetie Pie (1947), and Mama Bear in a series of Three Bears shorts, which animator Chuck Jones called one of his favorite portrayals. Benaderet did not receive onscreen credit for her work, as she was employed by Warner Bros. as a freelance actor[note 3] who voiced peripheral characters and, unlike Mel Blanc, was not under contract with the studio. In 1955, she was succeeded by June Foray as Warner's premier female voice artist.
Benaderet was Lucille Ball's first choice as Ethel Mertz for the sitcom I Love Lucy; Ball said in a 1984 interview that she had "no other picture of anyone" for the role of Ethel. However, Benaderet had to turn down the offer since she was contracted to the television adaptation of The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show, so Vivian Vance was eventually cast. Benaderet guest-starred on the January 21, 1952 first-season episode "Lucy Plays Cupid" as the character of Miss Lewis, a love-starved spinster neighbor.
Benaderet continued her Burns & Allen radio role of the Burns' neighbor Blanche Morton, Gracie's friend and staunchest supporter in her escapades. She was the only secondary cast member who appeared in every episode, and the first six shows were shot live in New York, resulting in Benaderet commuting to and from Los Angeles where she was working several radio assignments at the time. Blanche's husband Harry was played by four actors over the show's eight-year run; the last, Larry Keating, was introduced on the October 5, 1953 fourth-season premiere when George Burns entered the set and halted a scene of an angered Blanche preparing to hit Harry with a book. Burns introduced Keating to Benaderet and the audience, and she broke character to exchange pleasantries with Keating. The segment then resumed and Benaderet struck Keating with the book. Benaderet and Gracie Allen regularly shopped for their own on-set wardrobe, and she developed a high-pitched laugh for Blanche that became a staple of the character and was often used for comic effect: "When we had a scene with some silent spots in it, George would say to me, 'Laugh there, Bea.'" Benaderet garnered two Primetime Emmy Award nominations for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series in 1954 and 1955. Following Allen's retirement in 1958 at the end of the eighth season, the program continued as The George Burns Show in 1958–59 with Blanche repackaged as George's secretary, but it was canceled after one season due to low ratings. Benaderet worked sparsely in 1959, filming one-time appearances on General Electric Theater and The Restless Gun.
The 1960s saw Benaderet become a fixture on television, including working on two shows simultaneously from 1960 to 1964. In 1960, she played the housekeeper Wilma in the lone season of the Peter Lind Hayes-Mary Healy sitcom Peter Loves Mary, a part she received on the back of references from Burns. Benaderet considered herself "lucky" to be cast in another series out of fear that she had become too closely associated with Burns & Allen. The same year, she was then cast as Betty Rubble in the Hanna-Barbera primetime animated series The Flintstones after auditioning together with past radio coworker Jean Vander Pyl for Betty and Wilma Flintstone by exchanging dialogue before show co-creator Joseph Barbera. He asked afterwards what part they preferred; Vander Pyl recalled in 1994: "I said, 'Oh, I want to be Wilma!' [and] Bea said, 'That's fine with me.'" Benaderet adapted her Burns & Allen laugh for Betty's signature giggle,[note 4] and she voiced guest spots on the side for fellow Hanna-Barbera productions Top Cat, The Yogi Bear Show, and The Jetsons during 1961 and 1962. While filming the debut season of her show Petticoat Junction the next year, she continued voicing Betty by recording with her Flintstones castmates during evening hours, but scheduling conflicts forced her to drop the role at the end of the fourth season in 1964, and she was replaced by Gerry Johnson.[note 5]
In the late 1940s, Benaderet befriended Paul Henning, a scriptwriter on the radio production of Burns & Allen. She appeared on nineteen episodes of the show that he had written between 1947 and 1951, and became one of his regular television players with the first two seasons of Burns & Allen, a two-episode guest appearance as Blanche Morton on The Bob Cummings Show in 1956–57, and then her involvement in three of the most successful sitcoms of the 1960s. After reading the 1961 first script for The Beverly Hillbillies, Benaderet wanted to audition for the role of Granny. Despite considering her to be too buxom for his vision of the character as a small and wiry woman, Henning allowed her to test anyway. Irene Ryan would win the part; according to Henning, "Bea took one look at the way Irene did the part and said to me, 'There's your Granny!'" He additionally took Benaderet's suggestion of casting Harriet MacGibbon as Granny's rival Margaret Drysdale. Henning created for Benaderet the supporting character of Cousin Pearl Bodine, the middle-aged widowed mother of Jethro Bodine (Max Baer Jr.) and cousin of main character Jed Clampett (Buddy Ebsen), whom she convinces to move from his humble home in the Ozarks after he strikes oil on his property and becomes a millionaire. Prior to shooting the pilot, Benaderet enlisted a dialect coach to help her learn a hillbilly accent. Impressed with her performance while screening the pilot to potential sponsors, Henning made Cousin Pearl a recurring character in the 1962–63 first season as she moved into the Clampetts' Beverly Hills mansion, feuded with Granny, and pursued oil tycoon Mr. Brewster (Frank Wilcox) as a love interest. Bluegrass duo Flatt & Scruggs, who performed the show's opening theme, recorded a comedic serenade in 1963 titled "Pearl Pearl Pearl", and Benaderet was pictured on the single's cover. Benaderet described Pearl's curly hair as "just my mental image of the character. ... Pearl played the piano for the silent movies and she saw such high fashion and ridiculous hairdos. She could read and write, and the curled hair seemed to Pearl the height of smartness."[note 6] Her performance as Pearl was well received; author Stephen Cox wrote in his 1993 book The Beverly Hillbillies: From the Small Screen to the Big Screen: "When The Beverly Hillbillies first aired, it started to become 'The Bea Benaderet Show.' Every scene that had Cousin Pearl in it was just about stolen by the actress."
Paul Henning had long admired Benaderet's talents and strove to create a starring vehicle for her, as he felt she was worthy of headlining her own series after years of supporting parts. When CBS granted him an open time slot after the massive success of Beverly Hillbillies, he crafted the 1963 rural sitcom Petticoat Junction around Benaderet, and she starred as Kate Bradley, the widowed proprietor of the Shady Rest Hotel. Cousin Pearl was consequently written out of the Beverly Hillbillies storyline as having moved back home.[note 7] The character of Kate represented Benaderet's first straight role: "Kate Bradley is different from the characters I've played in the past. She has to walk a fine line between being humorous and tender. The other women I've played were strictly for laughs." Benaderet and director Richard Whorf auditioned the young actresses who would play Kate's three teenaged daughters, and she persuaded Henning (serving as executive producer) to let his eighteen-year-old daughter Linda read (successfully) for the role of Betty Jo Bradley. Linda Henning and Benaderet's son, Jack Bannon, were members of a young actors' theater group at the time. CBS promoted the show's September 22, 1963 premiere with a print ad featuring an Al Hirschfeld caricature of Benaderet as Cousin Pearl. Petticoat Junction was an immediate hit, peaking at fourth in the Nielsen ratings, and remained in the top 30 during Benaderet's four full seasons on the show from 1963 to 1967. Her former Flintstones costars Alan Reed and Jean Vander Pyl filmed guest spots in later seasons.
Henning was again given free rein for a new show with no pilot needed, which he bestowed to colleague Jay Sommers due to his busy schedule. Sommers created the 1965 sitcom Green Acres, adapted from his 1950 radio program Granby's Green Acres that had starred Benaderet, thus making it a spinoff of her own television show. Benaderet filmed six appearances as Kate in the first season as both shows' casts intermingled on several episodes in a process dubbed "cross-pollination".
Benaderet played bit parts in six motion pictures from 1946 to 1962, four of which were uncredited. She was chosen from two hundred actresses for the part of a government file clerk in Alfred Hitchcock's Notorious (1946) and completed filming in half an hour, but her scenes were cut from the final print. She told Radio Life magazine that year that after having struggled to remember her lines, "Mr. Hitchcock looked me right in the eye and asked 'You want to go back to radio?' I said yes". Her first onscreen appearance, also uncredited, was in the film On the Town (1949), as one of two women whom the main characters (played by Gene Kelly and Frank Sinatra) encounter while riding the subway.
In 1945, Benaderet and fellow voice actresses Janet Waldo and Cathy Lewis were to appear on a televised fashion show on Don Lee's W6XAO network before the project fell through. On Irving Taylor's novelty album Drink Along with Irving (1960), she duetted with Elvia Allman and Mel Blanc, respectively, on tracks titled "Sub-Bourbon Living" and "Separate Bar Stools".
Benaderet and her first husband, actor Jim Bannon, met while employed at KHJ in Los Angeles. They married in August 1938 and had two children: Jack (1940–2017), and Maggie (b. March 4, 1947). However, Bannon's heavy filming and touring schedule required for his portrayal of fictional cowboy hero Red Ryder took a toll on their marriage, and she filed for divorce in September 1950. In 1957, Benaderet married Eugene Twombly, a sound effects technician for movies and television who had worked on The Jack Benny Program, and they remained together until her death in 1968. Her son Jack Bannon became an actor, making his television debut in bit parts on Petticoat Junction and working on the show as a dialogue coach, and later starred in Lou Grant.
In 1961, Benaderet dressed in a Flintstones-style leopard-print costume to collect donations for City of Hope and March of Dimes, and worked with Welcome Wagon in the San Fernando Valley. On February 5, 1964, she was named an honorary sheriff of Calabasas, California, with her daughter Maggie accepting a badge on her behalf that was presented by her Petticoat Junction co-star Edgar Buchanan in a public ceremony.
During a routine checkup in 1963, a spot was discovered on one of Benaderet's lungs. The spot was no longer visible at the time of her followup visit, but by November 1967 it had returned and grown in size. She resisted immediate exploratory surgery as she was filming the fifth season of Petticoat Junction at the time and feared the show would be affected by her absence. On November 26, she underwent the operation at Good Samaritan Hospital in Los Angeles, and a tumor was found that it could not be removed. Diagnosed with lung cancer, Benaderet underwent six weeks of laser radiation treatment via a linear particle accelerator at Stanford University Medical Center. A longtime smoker, she cut down her multiple-pack-a-day habit following her initial checkups, and quit entirely after her surgery.
Benaderet's treatment was successful and concluded in January 1968. She missed ten episodes of the show as she recuperated, while her fan mail increased as she received many get-well wishes. Her character of Kate Bradley was described in the storyline as being out of town caring for an unseen ill relative, as expectations were that Benaderet would eventually recover and be able to resume filming. Rosemary DeCamp (Kate's sister Helen) and Shirley Mitchell (Kate's cousin Mae Jennings) filled in as temporary mother figures during her absence; Mitchell had previously worked with Benaderet on The Jack Benny Program in 1954–55 as Mabel Flapsaddle. Benaderet returned for the March 30 fifth-season finale "Kate's Homecoming", but after shooting the first three episodes of the sixth season, she took leave from the series in August 1968 due to fatigue. Initial plans were for her to record her voice to be inserted into future episodes. However, the cancer returned and her condition consequently declined; on September 26, chest pains related to her illness forced her to return to the hospital for the final time. The fourth show of the sixth season, "The Valley Has a Baby", marked Benaderet's last episode and featured only her voice with her stand-in filmed from the rear.
Benaderet died at age 62 on October 13, 1968, of lung cancer and pneumonia. She was entombed in Valhalla Memorial Park Cemetery in North Hollywood. On October 17, four days after her death and the day after her funeral, Twombly died of a massive heart attack, and was interred beside her.
When Benaderet was cast in Petticoat Junction, she was hailed as having "finally" become a star. She had previously played supporting roles throughout her career, usually as a next-door neighbor, and had been openly averse to leading roles. However, in January 1963, following CBS' acquisition of Petticoat Junction, she enthused to columnist Eve Starr of The Mercury: "Isn't it nice? After all these years. ... [It] just never occurred to me that it might...golly, my own show!" Benaderet often discussed facets of the acting profession in promotional interviews for the show, and believed that leading a series required a "feeling of responsibility", including her being more observant of on-set activity and her costars' performances, while continuously evolving her character.
Benaderet garnered praise for her mastery of dialects and her work as a comedienne and character actress, while she is recognized for her voice characterizations in animation. MeTV considered her an "icon" of 1960s television. Donna Douglas said, "Watching her timing is like watching a ballerina. She’s so effortless." Benaderet credited George Burns with mentoring her in comedy acting, but claimed that television scriptwriters focused more on her voice and delivery than her characters, which she believed stunted opportunities for her to play more dramatic roles. For her contributions to television, Benaderet received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1960, on 1611 Vine Street, and she was the recipient of a Genii Award in 1966.
She is credited with over one thousand combined radio and television episode appearances, for which she was nicknamed "Busy Bea" by the press. The Pantagraph columnist Ernie Kreiling remarked in 1965 that "probably no Hollywood personality has spent as many hours in our homes". Benaderet was good friends and a frequent collaborator with Mel Blanc, who wrote in his 1988 biography That's Not All Folks!: "[We] spent so much time together in studios that I used to refer jokingly to her as the 'other woman' in my life."
Staying with spelling of Benaderet's surname, which has been misspelled as Benadaret or Benederet, was a choice she had to make. She first resisted requests to change it when she began performing at twelve years old: "They told me no one could remember it, no one could pronounce it, no one could spell it." When she was introduced to Orson Welles in 1936, he remarked that her name "sounded like something you ad lib in a mob scene." It was misspelled in a 1946 press release created specifically about its proper spelling, and Radio Life wrote in 1947: "If someone were to conduct a survey to decide the radio personality with the most frequently misspelled name, Bea Benaderet would probably win hands down." Early in the first season of The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show, her full name appeared as "Bee Benadaret" in the closing credits.
|1949||On the Town||Brooklyn Girl on Subway||Uncredited|
|1952||The First Time||Mrs. Potter||Uncredited|
|1954||Black Widow||Mrs. Franklin Walsh||Uncredited|
|1959||Plunderers of Painted Flats||Ella Heather|
|1962||Tender Is the Night||Mrs. McKisco|
|1950–1958||The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show||Blanche Morton||291 episodes|
Nominated—Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series (1954, 1955)
|1952||I Love Lucy||Miss Lewis||Episode: "Lucy Plays Cupid"|
|1952–1955||The Jack Benny Program||Gertrude Gearshift||7 episodes|
Continuation of radio role
|1955||The Lineup||Episode: "The Falling Out of Thieves"|
|1956–57||The Bob Cummings Show||Blanche Morton||2 episodes|
|1958–59||The George Burns Show||Blanche Morton||25 episodes|
|1959||General Electric Theater||Marie||Episode: "Night Club"|
|1959||The Restless Gun||Madame Brimstone||Episode: "Mme. Brimstone"|
|1960||Mister Magoo||Mother Magoo; additional voices||5 episodes|
|1960||77 Sunset Strip||Mary Field||Episode: "Ten Cents a Death"|
|1960–1964||The Flintstones||Betty Rubble; additional voices||112 episodes|
|1960–61||Peter Loves Mary||Wilma||32 episodes|
|1961||The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis||Telephone Operator||Episode: "Spaceville"|
|1961–62||Top Cat||Various characters (voices)||6 episodes|
|1962||The New Breed||Miss Horne||Episode: "A Motive Named Walter"|
|1962||Pete and Gladys||Mrs. Springer||Episode: "Continental Dinner"|
|1962||The Jetsons||Emily Scopes/Celeste Skyler||Episode: "A Visit From Grandpa"|
|1962–63, 1967||The Beverly Hillbillies||Cousin Pearl Bodine||23 episodes|
|1963–1968||Petticoat Junction||Kate Bradley||164 episodes|
|1965–66||Green Acres||Kate Bradley||6 episodes|
|Year||Award||Category||Title of work||Result|
|1954||Emmy Award||Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series||The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show||Nominated|
|1955||Emmy Award||Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series||The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show||Nominated|
Events in 1968 in animation.Ain't She Tweet
Ain't She Tweet is a Looney Tunes (reissued as a Blue Ribbon Merrie Melodies in 1961) cartoon animated short starring Tweety and Sylvester. Released June 21, 1952, the cartoon is directed by Friz Freleng. The voices were performed by Mel Blanc and Bea Benaderet.
The title is a play on the song "Ain't She Sweet."All a Bir-r-r-d
All a Bir-r-r-d is a Warner Bros. Looney Tunes cartoon released in 1950, featuring Tweety, Sylvester and an unnamed bulldog, who would later become known as Hector the Bulldog. It was written by Tedd Pierce and directed by Isadore "Friz" Freleng, with most voice characterizations courtesy of Mel Blanc (Bea Benaderet does a brief voice-over of Tweety's owner). The title is an adaptation of the familiar train conductor's call, "All aboard!" The instrumental theme used to underscore the motion of the train is "On the 5:15".Bea (given name)
Bea is a feminine given name, often short for Beatrice. Notable people with the name include:
Bea Alonzo (born 1987), Filipina actress and singer
Beatrice Arthur (1922–2009), American actress
Bea Ballard, British television producer
Bea Barrett (1916–2002), American amateur golfer
Bea Benaderet (1906–1968), American actress
Bea Bielik (born 1980), American tennis player
Bea Binene (born 1997), Filipina actress
Bea Booze (1920–1975), American R&B and jazz singer
Bea Chester, American baseball player
Bea Feitler (1938–1982), Brazilian-born art-director
Bea Fiedler (born 1957), German topless model
Bea Firth (1946–2008), Canadian politician
Bea Gaddy (1933–2001), American humanitarian
Béa Gonzalez, Spanish-Canadian novelist
Gertrude Himmelfarb (born 1922), also known as Bea Kristol, American historian
Beatrice Lillie (1894–1989), Canadian actress
Bea Maddock (born 1934), Australian artist
Bea Miles (1902–1973), Australian eccentric
Bea Nettles (born 1946), art photographer and author
Bea Nicolas (born 1994), Filipina actress
Bea Palya (born 1976), Hungarian folk singer
Marie Beatrice Schol-Schwarz (1898–1969), also known as Bea Schwartz, Dutch phytopathologist
Bea Segura (born 1975), Spanish actress
Bea Wain (1917–2017), American singer
Bea Wyler, Swiss-German rabbiBewitched Bunny
Bewitched Bunny is a 1954 Looney Tunes cartoon featuring Bugs Bunny directed by Chuck Jones and written by Michael Maltese. Jones created the character Witch Hazel who debuted in this cartoon. Witch Hazel later appeared in Broom-Stick Bunny (1956), A Witch's Tangled Hare (1959), and in A-Haunting We Will Go (1966). She also has a brief cameo appearance in Transylvania 6-5000 (1963).Bugs Bunny and the Three Bears
Bugs Bunny and the Three Bears is a 1944 Merrie Melodies cartoon short directed by Chuck Jones and written by Tedd Pierce. This short marks the first appearance of Jones' dysfunctional version of The Three Bears, and is a parody of the old fairy tale, Goldilocks and The Three Bears.
Mel Blanc provides the voices of Bugs and Papa Bear (for the latter using a raucous voice similar to Yosemite Sam only a little higher-pitched). Mama Bear is voiced by Bea Benaderet, while Kent Rogers voiced dim-witted Junyer. Stan Freberg is often incorrectly credited with voicing the character of Junyer. The cartoon was released four months before Rogers' death in the crash during a training flight in Pensacola, Florida, while he was in the military during World War II.Chow Hound
Chow Hound is a Looney Tunes (reissued as a Blue Ribbon Merrie Melodies in 1959) animated short directed by Chuck Jones and written by Michael Maltese. Released June 16, 1951, the voices are performed by Mel Blanc, Bea Benaderet and John T. Smith.
Unlike many Warner Bros.-series cartoons featuring cats, such as Sylvester, as the antagonists of their targets (such as birds) and dogs serving to discourage their behavior, Chow Hound uses a different formula, wherein a large bulldog is the merciless bully, and the cat (along with a mouse) is his hapless victim.From A to Z-Z-Z-Z
From A to Z-Z-Z-Z is a 1954 animated cartoon short by Chuck Jones in the Looney Tunes (reissued as Blue Ribbon Merrie Melodies in 1961) series. It was released by Warner Bros. on Oct. 16, 1954. Written by Michael Maltese and produced by Edward Selzer, it was animated by Ken Harris, Lloyd Vaughan, and Ben Washam. Voice actors Dick Beals, Mel Blanc, and Norman Nesbitt were uncredited. Sources are divided whether the uncredited teacher was voiced by Bea BenaderetThe short was nominated for "Best Short Subject, Cartoons" at the 1954 Academy Awards.Granny (Looney Tunes)
Emma Webster, better known as Granny, is a Warner Bros. Cartoons character created by Friz Freleng, best known from Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies animated shorts of the 1950s and 1960s. She is the owner of Tweety (and more often than not, Sylvester and Hector). Her voice was first provided by Bea Benaderet from 1950 through 1955, then by June Foray for almost 60 years.Hare Force
Hare Force is a 1944 Warner Bros. cartoon in the Merrie Melodies series, directed by Friz Freleng and starring Bugs Bunny and an old lady. Although the title is an obvious play on Air Force, the cartoon's plot has nothing to do with the military. "As Time Goes By" is sung in this short by Sylvester the dog (not to be confused with Sylvester the cat) and Bugs at different points.I Taw a Putty Tat
I Taw a Putty Tat is a short Merrie Melodies animated cartoon released on April 2, 1948, and directed by Friz Freleng. It stars Tweety and Sylvester, both voiced by Mel Blanc. The uncredited voice of the lady of the house (seen only from the neck down, as she talks on the phone) was Bea Benaderet.
The bird's inability to enunciate certain letters, possibly due to having a beak instead of lips or, more likely, because it is always depicted as a baby bird in order to explain why it never flies away from danger (so it speaks in baby-talk) is the reason for the pronunciation of his famous catch-phrase that forms part of this cartoon's title (as in "I Thought I Saw a Pussy Cat"). This is the first film whose title included Tweety's speech-impaired term for a cat. The "standard" spelling was eventually changed from "putty tat" to "puddy tat" as that is the way many small children say it.Melissa Duck
Melissa Duck is an animated cartoon character in the Warner Brothers Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies series of cartoons and the animated television series Baby Looney Tunes. She is featured as main character Daffy Duck's blonde girlfriend in several cartoon shorts but is only referred to as Melissa in one, The Scarlet Pumpernickel, where she is voiced by Bea Benaderet.Of Rice and Hen
Of Rice and Hen is a 1953 Looney Tunes animated short starring Foghorn Leghorn, Miss Prissy, and The Barnyard Dog. The title is a play on John Steinbeck's 1937 novel Of Mice and Men. Foghorn Leghorn as usual is voiced by Mel Blanc, while an uncredited Bea Benaderet voices all of the female hens.Petticoat Junction
Petticoat Junction is an American sitcom that originally aired on CBS from September 1963 to April 1970. The series takes place at the Shady Rest Hotel, which is run by Kate Bradley, her three daughters Billie Jo, Bobbie Jo, and Betty Jo, and her uncle Joe Carson. The series is one of three interrelated shows about rural characters produced by Paul Henning. Petticoat Junction was created upon the success of Henning's previous rural/urban-themed sitcom The Beverly Hillbillies (1962–1971). The success of Petticoat Junction led to a spin-off, Green Acres (1965–1971). Petticoat Junction was produced by Wayfilms (a joint venture of Filmways Television and Pen-Ten Productions).Plunderers of Painted Flats
Plunderers of Painted Flats is a 1959 American Western film directed by Albert C. Gannaway and written by John Greene and Phil Shuken. The film stars Corinne Calvet, John Carroll, Skip Homeier, George Macready, Edmund Lowe and Bea Benaderet. The film was released on January 23, 1959, by Republic Pictures and was the last film that they had produced and released.Sandy Claws (film)
Sandy Claws is a 1955 animated Warner Bros. Looney Tunes cartoon directed by Friz Freleng starring Sylvester and Tweety. The voices are performed by Mel Blanc and Bea Benaderet. This short was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film in 1954, but lost to When Magoo Flew.
Sandy Claws marks the final time Benaderet would voice Granny; in later films, Granny would be voiced by June Foray. In addition, after the release of this short, Granny would be overhauled. Her appearance and dress would be updated (starting with "Red Riding Hoodwinked"), and while her cheerful demeanour would be retained (with a few exceptions), her old-fashioned characteristics and mannerisms—such as her dress and inability to relate to present-day trends—would be de-emphasized.The Adventures of Maisie
The Adventures of Maisie (aka Maisie) was a radio comedy series starring Ann Sothern as underemployed entertainer Maisie Ravier and a spin-off of Sothern's successful 1939–1947 Maisie movie series, based on a character created by Wilson Collison.) The series was broadcast on CBS Radio, NBC Radio, the Mutual Radio Network, and Mutual flagship radio station WHN in New York City.
Sponsored by Eversharp, the first series ran on CBS Radio from July 5, 1945 to March 28, 1947, airing on Thursdays at 8:30 p.m. during the first two months, then moving to Wednesdays at 9:30 p.m. (1945–46), then Fridays at 10:30 p.m. (1946–47). The supporting cast included Hy Averback, Arthur Q. Bryan, Hans Conried, Virginia Gregg, Peter Leeds, Johnny McGovern, and Sidney Miller. John "Bud" Hiestand was one of its many announcers, Harry Zimmerman and Albert Sack supplied the music, and John L. Greene produced. Tony Sanford directed scripts by Samuel Taylor and others.
The series was heard on the Mutual Radio Network from January 11 to December 26, 1952, and it was syndicated from 1949 to 1952 with Pat McGeehan as Eddie Jordan. Bea Benaderet and Elvia Allman portrayed Mrs. Kennedy. The supporting cast included Averback, Conreid, Leeds, McGovern, Lurene Tuttle, Ben Wright, Sandra Gould, and Jeffrey Silver. Harry Zimmerman led the orchestra with John Easton and Jack McCoy announcing.
The show popularized the 1940s catch phrase, "Likewise, I'm sure."The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show
The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show, sometimes called The Burns and Allen Show, is a half-hour television series broadcast from 1950 to 1958 on CBS. It stars George Burns and Gracie Allen, one of the most enduring acts in entertainment history. Burns and Allen were headliners in vaudeville in the 1920s, and radio stars in the 1930s and 1940s. Their situation comedy TV series received Emmy Award nominations throughout its eight-year run.This is Your FBI
This Is Your FBI was a radio crime drama which aired in the United States on ABC from April 6, 1945 to January 30, 1953 for a total of 409 shows. FBI chief J. Edgar Hoover gave it his endorsement, calling it "the finest dramatic program on the air".
Producer-director Jerry Devine was given access to FBI files by Hoover, and the resulting dramatizations of FBI cases were narrated by Frank Lovejoy (1945), Dean Carleton (1946–1947) and William Woodson (1948–1953). Stacy Harris played the lead role of fictional Special Agent Jim Taylor. Others in the cast were William Conrad, Bea Benaderet and Jay C. Flippen.This Is Your FBI was sponsored during its entire run by the Equitable Life Assurance Society of the United States (now AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company).