1 Early life 2 Career 3 Personal life 4 Filmography 5 References 6 External links
She was born in
Oakland, California to Roy Van Fleet and Elizabeth "Bessie" Catherine (née Gardner). Career Van Fleet established herself as a notable dramatic actress on Broadway over several years, beginning in 1946 as Dorcas in The Winter's Tale, and playing Regan in King Lear
King Lear in 1950. She won the Tony Award
Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Play in 1954 for her performance as Jessie Mae Watts in Horton Foote's The Trip to Bountiful, costarring Lillian Gish
Lillian Gish and Eva Marie Saint. After her success on the stage, director Elia Kazan
Elia Kazan brought her to Hollywood
Hollywood to work on screen. Kazan, who had directed her on stage in 1952's Flight to Egypt
Flight to Egypt and 1953's Camino Real, cast her as Cathy Ames in his film adaptation of John Steinbeck's East of Eden (1955); this was her film debut. She won an Academy Award
Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her performance. Her subsequent film work was steady through 1960, and included films such as The Rose Tattoo (1955), I'll Cry Tomorrow (1955), The King and Four Queens
The King and Four Queens (1956), and Gunfight at the O.K. Corral (1957). However, her career did not progress as she had hoped. Her friend and mentor, Kazan, once said "Jo stagnated, and, since she knew it, was bitter. And as she became bitter, she became more difficult." In 1958, she was nominated for a Tony Award
Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play for her performance in Look Homeward, Angel, in which she played the acquisitive mother of Anthony Perkins' character. Her later films included Wild River (1960) -- though only 46, Fleet would spend five hours every morning getting into her make-up and applying wrinkles to play the role of an 89-year-old matriarch -- Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella (1965), as Paul Newman's mother in Cool Hand Luke (1967), and I Love You, Alice B. Toklas
I Love You, Alice B. Toklas (1968). Her television work included Alfred Hitchcock Presents, Thriller, Bonanza
Bonanza and The Wild Wild West. Personal life Van Fleet was married to William Bales from 1946 until his death in 1990. Van Fleet died in a Jamaica, Queens
Jamaica, Queens hospital from undisclosed causes at the age of 80. Her body was cremated and her ashes returned to her family. She was survived by her son Michael Bales and grandson Arden Rogow-Bales. She has a star on the Hollywood
Hollywood Walk of Fame for her contribution to Motion Pictures at 7000 Hollywood
Hollywood Boulevard. Filmography
Year Title Role Notes
1955 Max Liebman Spectaculars Aunt Dete episode: "Heidi"
Star Tonight Irene Rankin episode: "Concerning Death"
East of Eden
Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress Nominated—BAFTA Award for Most Promising Newcomer to Leading Film Roles
The Philco Television Playhouse Shirley episode: "A Business Proposition"
The Rose Tattoo Bessie
I'll Cry Tomorrow Katie Roth
1956 Kraft Theatre Ma episode: "Snapfinger Creek"
The King and Four Queens Ma McDade
Alfred Hitchcock Presents Mrs. Shrike episode: "Shopping for Death"
1957 Gunfight at the O.K. Corral Kate Fisher
This Angry Age Mme. Dufresne
Alfred Hitchcock Presents Anna Kaminsky episode: "Reward to Finder"
1958 Westinghouse Desilu Playhouse Mrs. Lombe episode: "The Crazy Hunter"
1959 Alcoa Theatre Mrs. Weiss episode: "30 Pieces of Silver"
G.E. True Theatre Miss Wanda Kelsey episode: "Disaster"
1960 Wild River Ella Garth
Play of the Week Canina episode: "Volpone"
1961 The DuPont Show of the Month Callie episode: "The Night of the Storm"
Alfred Hitchcock Presents Molly episode: "Servant Problem"
Thriller Mrs. Cissy Hawk episode: "The Remarkable Mrs. Hawk"
1962 Naked City Dr. Anna Chaloupka episode: "The Night the Saints Lost Their Halos"
Frontier Circus Amelia Curtis episode: "The Courtship"
1963 Route 66 Hazel Quine episode: "The Stone Guest"
77 Sunset Strip Jane Patterson episode: "Don't Wait for Me"
1964 Summer Playhouse Velma Clarke episode: "Satan's Waitin'"
Kraft Suspense Theatre Hildy Hesse episode: "The World I Want"
1965 Cinderella Stepmother TV movie
1966 The Virginian Lee Calder episode: "Legacy of Hate"
1967 Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre Emily Cooper episode: "Verdict for Terror"
Cool Hand Luke Arletta
1968 I Love You, Alice B. Toklas Mother
1969 The Wild Wild West Amelia Bronston episode: "The Night of the Tycoons"
80 Steps to Jonah Nonna
1970 Mannix Alexandra Pulvarenti episode: "One for the Lady"
Mod Squad Annie Crabtree episode: "'A' is for Annie"
Bonanza Amy Wilder episode: "The Trouble with Amy"
1971 Great Performances Clara episode: "Paradise Lost"
Bonanza Miss Ellen Dobbs episode: "The Stillness Within"
The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight Big Momma
Medical Center Margaret episode: "Martyr"
1972 The Family Rico Mama Rico TV movie
1973 Medical Center Leah episode: "Time of Darkness"
Satan's School for Girls Headmistress
1976 The Tenant Madame Dioz
1977 Police Woman Irini Karabetas episode: "The Buttercup Killer"
1980 Power Mother Vanda TV movie
1986 Seize the Day Mrs. Einhorn (final film role)
^ a b Date of birth for Jo Van Fleet, californiabirthindex.org; accessed September 2, 2015. ^ a b c d e Obituary: Jo Van Fleet, independent.co.uk, June 20, 1996; accessed November 21, 2013 ^ Wilson, Scott (16 September 2016). "Resting Places: The Burial Sites of More Than 14,000 Famous Persons, 3d ed". McFarland – via Google Books. ^ Obituary, nytimes.com, June 11, 1996; accessed August 4, 2015.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Jo Van Fleet.
v t e
Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress
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Jane Darwell (1940) Mary Astor
Mary Astor (1941) Teresa Wright
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Gloria Grahame (1952) Donna Reed
Donna Reed (1953) Eva Marie Saint
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Jo Van Fleet (1955) Dorothy Malone
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Wendy Hiller (1958) Shelley Winters
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Rita Moreno (1961) Patty Duke
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Lee Grant (1975)
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v t e
Tony Award for Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Play
Patricia Neal (1947) Shirley Booth
Shirley Booth (1949) Maureen Stapleton
Maureen Stapleton (1951) Marian Winters (1952) Beatrice Straight (1953) Jo Van Fleet
Jo Van Fleet (1954) Patricia Jessel (1955) Una Merkel
Una Merkel (1956) Peggy Cass
Peggy Cass (1957) Anne Bancroft
Anne Bancroft (1958) Julie Newmar
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Anne Revere (1960) Colleen Dewhurst
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Elizabeth Ashley (1962) Sandy Dennis (1963) Barbara Loden
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Joan Hickson (1979) Dinah Manoff (1980) Swoosie Kurtz
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Christine Baranski (1984) Judith Ivey (1985) Swoosie Kurtz
Swoosie Kurtz (1986) Mary Alice
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Christine Baranski (1989) Margaret Tyzack
Margaret Tyzack (1990) Irene Worth
Irene Worth (1991) Bríd Brennan (1992) Debra Monk
Debra Monk (1993) Jane Adams (1994) Frances Sternhagen
Frances Sternhagen (1995) Audra McDonald
Audra McDonald (1996) Lynne Thigpen
Lynne Thigpen (1997) Anna Manahan (1998) Elizabeth Franz (1999) Blair Brown
Blair Brown (2000) Viola Davis
Viola Davis (2001) Katie Finneran
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WorldCat Identities VIAF: 41402802 LCCN: no91019895 ISNI: 0000 0000 8223 2489 GND: 141944277 SUDOC: 098612018 MusicBrainz: 4b4d35f5-5ad9-4765-b65a-4851f8b093a6 BNE: XX1710283 SN