Kim Hunter (born Janet Cole; November 12, 1922 – September 11, 2002) was an American film, theatre, and television actress. She won both an Academy Award and a Golden Globe Award, each as Best Supporting Actress, for her performance as Stella Kowalski in the 1951 film A Streetcar Named Desire. Decades later, she was nominated for a Daytime Emmy Award for her work on the long-running soap opera The Edge of Night. She also portrayed the character of chimpanzee Zira in the first three installments of the original film adaptation Planet of the Apes.
November 12, 1922
|Died||September 11, 2002 79) (aged|
(m. 1944; div. 1946)
(m. 1951; his death 2000)
Hunter was born in Detroit, Michigan, the daughter of Grace Lind, who was trained as a concert pianist, and Donald Cole, a refrigeration engineer. She was of English and Welsh descent. Hunter attended Miami Beach High School.
Hunter's first film role was in the 1943 film noir, The Seventh Victim, and her first starring role was in the 1946 British fantasy film A Matter of Life and Death. In 1947, she was Stella Kowalski on stage in the original Broadway production of A Streetcar Named Desire. Recreating that role in the 1951 film version, Hunter won both the Academy and Golden Globe awards for Best Supporting Actress. In the interim, however, in 1948, she had already joined with Streetcar co-stars Marlon Brando, Karl Malden, and 47 others, to become one of the first members accepted by the newly created Actors Studio.
Hunter was blacklisted from film and television in the 1950s, amid suspicions of communism in Hollywood, during the era of the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC). She still appeared in an episode of CBS's anthology series Appointment with Adventure and NBC's Justice, based on case files of the New York Legal Aid Society.
In 1956, with the HUAC's influence subsiding, she co-starred in Rod Serling's Peabody Award-winning teleplay on Playhouse 90, "Requiem for a Heavyweight". The telecast won multiple Emmy Awards, including Best Single Program of the Year. She appeared opposite Mickey Rooney in the 1957 live CBS-TV broadcast of The Comedian, another drama written by Rod Serling and directed by John Frankenheimer. In 1959, she appeared in Rawhide in "Incident of the Misplaced Indians" as Amelia Spaulding. In 1962, she appeared in the NBC medical drama The Eleventh Hour in the role of Virginia Hunter in the episode "Of Roses and Nightingales and Other Lovely Things". In 1963, Hunter appeared as Anita Anson on the ABC medical drama Breaking Point in the episode "Crack in an Image". In 1965, she appeared twice as Emily Field in the NBC TV medical series Dr. Kildare. In 1967, she appeared in the pilot episode of Mannix. On February 4, 1968, she appeared as Ada Halle in the NBC TV Western series Bonanza in the episode "The Price of Salt".
Her other major film roles include the love interest of David Niven's character in the film A Matter of Life and Death (1946), and Zira, the sympathetic chimpanzee scientist in the 1968 film Planet of the Apes and two sequels. She also appeared in several radio and TV soap operas, most notably as Hollywood actress Nola Madison in ABC's The Edge of Night, for which she received a Daytime Emmy Award nomination as Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series in 1980. In 1979, she appeared as First Lady Ellen Axson Wilson in the serial drama Backstairs at the White House.
Hunter starred in the controversial TV movie Born Innocent (1974) playing the mother of Linda Blair's character. She also starred in several episodes of the CBS Radio Mystery Theater during the mid-1970s. In 1971, she appeared in an episode of Cannon. In the same year, she starred in a Columbo episode "Suitable for Framing". In 1973, she appeared twice on Lorne Greene's short-lived ABC crime drama Griff, including the episode "The Last Ballad", in which she portrayed Dr. Martha Reed, a physician held by police in the death of a patient. In 1974, she appeared on Raymond Burr's Ironside. In 1977, she appeared on the NBC Western series The Oregon Trail starring Rod Taylor, in the episode "The Waterhole", which also featured Lonny Chapman.
Hunter's last film role in a major motion picture was in Clint Eastwood's 1997 film, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. In it, Hunter portrayed Betty Harty, legal secretary for real-life Savannah lawyer, Sonny Seiler.
Hunter was married twice. Her first marriage was in 1944 to William Baldwin, a Marine Corps pilot. Before the marriage was dissolved in 1946, the couple had a daughter, Kathryn Deirdre (b. 1944). Her second marriage was in 1951 to actor Robert Emmett; together, they had a son, Sean Robert (b. 1954). Hunter and Emmett would occasionally perform together in stage plays; he died in 2000. Hunter was a lifelong liberal Democrat.
|1943||The Seventh Victim||Mary Gibson|
|1943||Tender Comrade||Doris Dumbrowski|
|1943||Reconnaissance Pilot||Catherine Cummings||Uncredited / Documentary short|
|1944||A Canterbury Tale||Johnson's Girl||US release scenes shot in 1946|
|1944||When Strangers Marry||Mildred "Millie" Baxter|
|1945||You Came Along||Frances Hotchkiss|
|1946||A Matter of Life and Death||June|
|1951||A Streetcar Named Desire||Stella Kowalski||Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress|
Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture
|1952||Deadline – U.S.A.||Nora Hutcheson|
|1952||Anything Can Happen||Helen Watson|
|1956||Bermuda Affair||Fran West|
|1956||Storm Center||Martha Lockridge|
|1957||The Young Stranger||Helen Ditmar|
|1958||Money, Women and Guns||Mary Johnston Kingman|
|1964||Lilith||Dr. Bea Brice|
|1968||Planet of the Apes||Dr. Zira|
|1968||The Swimmer||Betty Graham|
|1970||Beneath the Planet of the Apes||Dr. Zira|
|1971||Escape from the Planet of the Apes||Dr. Zira|
|1971||Jennifer on My Mind||Jennifer's Mother||Scenes deleted|
|1976||Dark August||Adrianna Putnam|
|1987||The Kindred||Amanda Hollins|
|1990||Due occhi diabolici||Mrs. Pym||Segment: "The Black Cat"|
|1993||The Black Cat||Mrs. Pym||Short release of segment in Due occhi diabolici|
|1997||Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil||Betty Harty|
|1998||A Price Above Rubies||Rebbitzn|
|1999||Out of the Cold||Elsa Lindepu|
|2000||The Hiding Place||Muriel|
|2000||Here's to Life!||Nelly Ormond|
|1948–1950||Actors Studio||4 episodes|
|1949||The Philco Television Playhouse||2 episodes|
|1949||The Silver Theatre||Episode: "Rhapsody in Discord"|
|1949||Suspense||Emily||Episode: "Man in the House"|
|1949||The Ford Theatre Hour||Meg March||Episode: "Little Women"|
|1952||Robert Montgomery Presents||Episode: "Rise Up and Walk"|
|1952||Celanese Theatre||Gaby Maple||Episode: "The Petrified Forest"|
|1953||Gulf Playhouse||Episode: "A Gift from Cotton Mather"|
|1954||Janet Dean, Registered Nurse||Sylvia Peters||Episode: "The Putnam Case"|
|1955||Omnibus||Joan of Arc||Segment: "The Trial of St. Joan"|
|1955||Justice||Episode: "The Blues Kill Me"|
|1955||Appointment with Adventure||Episode: "Race the Comet"|
|1955||Star Tonight||Episode: "Cross-Words"|
|1955||Screen Directors Playhouse||Elizabeth||Episode: "A Midsummer Daydream"|
|1955||Lux Video Theatre||Lina||Episode: "Suspicion"|
|1955–1958||Climax!||Ann Brewster / Lynn Griffith / Barbara Williams||3 episodes|
|1956||Studio 57||Molly||Episode: "Perfect Likeness"|
|1956||The Joseph Cotten Show||Anita Wells||Episode: "The Person and Property of Margery Hay"|
|1956–1960||General Electric Theater||Edie Gauman / Hilda / Mary Murphy||3 episodes|
|1956–1960||Playhouse 90||Helen Bragg / Maria / Mrs. Anderson / Shirl Cato / Joyce McClure / Anna Rojas / Julie Hogarth / Grace Carney||8 episodes|
|1956–1962||The United States Steel Hour||Vivan||2 episodes|
|1957||The Kaiser Aluminum Hour||Louise Marden||Episode: "Whereabouts Unknown"|
|1958||Studio One||Maggie Church||Episode: "Ticket to Tahiti"|
|1958||Lamp Unto My Feet||Episode: "Antigone"|
|1958||Alcoa Theatre||Stephanie Heldman||Episode: "The Dark File"|
|1958||Rendezvous||Amanda 'Mandy' Sullivan Skowran||Episode: "In an Early Winter"|
|1959||Rawhide||Amelia Spaulding||Episode: "Incident of the Misplaced Indians"|
|1959||The Lineup||Sister Angela||Episode: "The Strange Return of Army Armitage"|
|1959||Adventures in Paradise||Vanessa Sutton Charles||Episode: "Haunted"|
|1960||The Closing Door||Television film|
|1960||NBC Sunday Showcase||Episode: "The Secret of Freedom"|
|1960||World Wide '60||Jill||Episode: "The Secret of Freedom"|
|1960||Special for Women: The Cold Woman||The Cold Woman||Television film|
|1960–1961||The Play of the Week||2 episodes|
|1961||Give Us Barabbas!||Mara||Television film|
|1962||Naked City||Edna Daggett||Episode: "The Face of the Enemy"|
|1962||The Dick Powell Show||Ruth Jacobs||Episode: "Tomorrow, the Man"|
|1962||The Eleventh Hour||Virginia Hunter||Episode: "Of Roses and Nightingales and Other Lovely Things"|
|1963||Jackie Gleason: American Scene Magazine||Guest / Sketches||Episode: #1.15|
|1963||The Nurses||Lora Stanton||Episode: "They Are as Lions"|
|1963||Chronicle||Episode: "The French, They Are So French"|
|1963||Breaking Point||Anita Anson||Episode: "Crack in an Image"|
|1963||Arrest and Trial||Geraldine Weston Saunders||Episode: "Some Weeks Are All Mondays"|
|1964||The Alfred Hitchcock Hour||Adelaide Winters||Episode: "The Evil of Adelaide Winters"|
|1965||The Defenders||Eileen Rolf||Episode: "The Unwritten Law"|
|1965||Dr. Kildare||Emily Field||2 episodes|
|1966||Confidential for Women||Episode: "Love After Marriage"|
|1966||Lamp At Midnight||Maria Celeste||Hallmark Hall of Fame Television film|
|1966||Hawk||Mrs. Gilworth||Episode: "Wall of Silence"|
|1967–1970||Mannix||Angela Warren / Louise Dubrio||2 episodes|
|1968||Bonanza||Ada Halle||Episode: "The Price of Salt"|
|1968||The Young Loner||Freda Williams||Television film|
|1968||Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color||Freda Williams||2 episodes|
|1968||The Jackie Gleason Show||Miss Patterson||Episode: "The Honeymooners: The Boy Next Door"|
|1968||CBS Playhouse||Gerrie Mason||Episode: "The People Next Door"|
|1969||NET Playhouse||Clytemnestra||Episode: "The Prodigal"|
|1970||Dial Hot Line||Mrs. Edith Carruthers||Television film|
|1970||The Teaching||Nan Golden||Television film|
|1970||The Young Lawyers||Miriam Hewitt||Episode: "The Alienation Kick"|
|1970||Bracken's World||Amy Dobie||Episode: "A Team of One-Legged Acrobats"|
|1971||The Bold Ones: The New Doctors||Elaine Miller||Episode: "A Matter of Priorities"|
|1971||In Search of America||Cora Chandler||Television film|
|1971||Gunsmoke||Bea Colter||Episode: "The Legend"|
|1971||Cannon||Liz Somers||Episode: "Girl in the Electric Coffin"|
|1971||Columbo||Edna Matthews||Episode: "Suitable for Framing"|
|1971–1974||Medical Center||Marion / Carla Yarman||2 episodes|
|1972||Night Gallery||Cora Peddington||Segment: "The Late Mr. Peddington"|
|1972||Owen Marshall, Counselor at Law||Faye Danner||Episode: "Lines from an Angry Book"|
|1972||Young Dr. Kildare||Episode: "The Thing with Feathers"|
|1973||Mission: Impossible||Hannah O'Connel||Episode: "Incarnate"|
|1973||Love, American Style||Ruth||Segment: "Love and the Happy Family"|
|1973||The Magician||Nora Coogan||Episode: "Pilot"|
|1973||Marcus Welby, M.D.||Vera Pulaski||Episode: "For Services Rendered"|
|1973||Griff||Dr. Martha Reed||Episode: "The Last Ballad"|
|1973||Police Story||Rose Koster||Episode: "Man on a Rack"|
|1973||Hec Ramsey||Annie Kirby||Episode: "The Detroit Connection"|
|1973–1974||The Evil Touch||Emily Webber / Jill||2 episodes|
|1974||Ironside||Athena Champion / Joanna Portman||2 episodes|
|1974||Unwed Father||Judy Simmons||Television film|
|1974||Born Innocent||Mrs. Parker||Television film|
|1974||Bad Ronald||Elaine Wilby||Television film|
|1975||Insight||Ann Hinds||Episode: "The Last of the Great Male Chauvinists"|
|1975||Lucas Tanner||Bess Reiter||Episode: "Collision"|
|1975||Ellery Queen||Marion McKell||Episode: "Too Many Suspects"|
|1975||The Wide World of Mystery||Episode: "The Impersonation Murder Case"|
|1976||The Dark Side of Innocence||Kathleen Hancock||Television film|
|1976||Baretta||Crazy Annie||Episode: "Crazy Annie"|
|1976||Once an Eagle||Kitty Damon||Television miniseries|
|1977||The Oregon Trail||Liz Webster||Episode: "The Waterhole"|
|1977||Hunter||Mrs. Lovejoy||Episode: "The Lovejoy File"|
|1978||Project U.F.O.||Samantha||Episode: "Sighting 4017: The Devilish Davidson Lights Incident"|
|1978||Stubby Pringle's Christmas||Mrs. Harper||Television film|
|1979||Backstairs at the White House||Mrs. Ellen Wilson||Television miniseries|
|1979||The Rockford Files||Mrs. Brockleman / Mrs. Brockelman||2 episodes|
|1979||The Golden Gate Murders||Sister Superior||Television film|
|1979–1980||The Edge of Night||Nola Madison||113 episodes|
Nominated—Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series (1980)
|1980||F.D.R.: The Last Year||Lucy Rutherford||Television film|
|1981||Skokie||Bertha Feldman||Television film|
|1984||Scene of the Crime||Helen Hollander||Episode: "Pilot"|
|1985||Private Sessions||Rosemary O'Reilly||Television film|
|1985||American Playhouse||Mary Easty||Episode: "Three Sovereigns for Sarah: Part I"|
|1988||Drop-Out Mother||Leona||Television film|
|1989||Cross of Fire||Mrs. Oberholtzer||Television film|
|1990||Murder, She Wrote||Beatrice Vitello||Episode: "Trials and Tribulations"|
|1993||All My Children||Faye Perth|
|1993||Bloodlines: Murder in the Family||Vera Woodman||Television film|
|1993||Triumph Over Disaster: The Hurricane Andrew Story||Elsa Rael||Television film|
|1994||Mad About You||Millie Barton||Episode: "Love Letters"|
|1994||L.A. Law||Natalie Schoen||Episode: "Finish Line"|
|1997||As the World Turns||Nurse / Mrs. Tompkins||3 episodes|
|1999||Blue Moon||Sheila Keating||Television film|
|2001||The Education of Max Bickford||Adelle Aldrich||Episode: "Who Is Breckenridge Long?"|
Awards and nominations
|1951||Academy Awards||Best Supporting Actress||A Streetcar Named Desire||Won|
|1951||Golden Globe Award||Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture||A Streetcar Named Desire||Won|
|1980||Daytime Emmy Award||Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series||The Edge of Night||Nominated|
- "1980 Emmy Winners & Nominees". Soap Opera Digest. American Media, Inc. Archived from the original on August 18, 2004. Retrieved June 28, 2013.
- Lillian Ross; Helen Ross (April 8, 1961). "The Player A Profile Of An Art". Simon And Schuster – via Internet Archive.
- Collura, Joe (October 23, 2009). "Kim Hunter". Classic Images. Retrieved March 10, 2018.
- "Kim Hunter". www.nndb.com. Retrieved April 15, 2019.
- "Kim Hunter | Hollywood Walk of Fame". www.walkoffame.com. Retrieved April 15, 2019.
- "Winners & Nominees : Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in any Motion Picture 1952". GoldenGlobes.com. Golden Globe Awards. Retrieved December 20, 2018.
- "Oscar Ceremony 1952 (Actress In A Supporting Role)". Oscars.org. Academy Awards. Retrieved December 20, 2018.
- Dick Kleiner: "The Actors Studio: Making Stars Out of the Unknown," The Sarasota Journal (Friday, December 21, 1956), p. 26. "That first year, they interviewed around 700 actors and picked 50. In that first group were people like Marlon Brando, Montgomery Clift, Tom Ewell, John Forsythe, Julie Harris, Kim Hunter, Karl Malden, E.G. Marshall, Margaret Phillips, Maureen Stapleton, Kim Stanley, Jo Van Fleet, Eli Wallach, Ray Walston and David Wayne."
- "Kim Hunter: The Career That Might Have Been". Legacy.com. Retrieved March 10, 2018.
- "Justice". The Classic TV Archive. Archived from the original on October 8, 2011. Retrieved February 8, 2011.
- Baxter, Brian (September 12, 2002). "Obituary: Kim Hunter". The Guardian. Retrieved February 5, 2017.
- "Kim Hunter". The Daily Telegraph. September 12, 2002. Retrieved February 5, 2017.
- Lyman, Rick (September 12, 2002). "Kim Hunter, 79, an Actress Lauded as Stella in 'Streetcar'". The New York Times. Retrieved May 28, 2018.
- "Kim Hunter Obituary - Legacy.com". www.legacy.com.
- Wilson, Scott (September 16, 2016). "Resting Places: The Burial Sites of More Than 14,000 Famous Persons, 3d ed". McFarland – via Google Books.
- Welkos, Robert W. (September 12, 2002). "Kim Hunter - Hollywood Star Walk". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved March 10, 2018.
- "Kim Hunter Rd". Kim Hunter Rd. Retrieved April 15, 2019.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Kim Hunter.|
- Kim Hunter on IMDb
- Kim Hunter at AllMovie
- Kim Hunter at the Internet Broadway Database
- Kim Hunter at the Internet Off-Broadway Database
- Kim Hunter scripts and rehearsal notes, 1957–1993, held by the Billy Rose Theatre Division, New York Public Library for the Performing Arts
- Kim Hunter papers, Additions 1925-2000, held by the Billy Rose Theatre Division, New York Public Library for the Performing Arts
- Kim Hunter at The Interviews: An Oral History of Television