Knowledge Identifier: +Ethel_Owen
Category: Movies & TV
Born in 1907.
Countries: United States (31%), Georgia (23%), Wisconsin (23%)
Linked to: University of North Carolina, CBS, NBC
Born in Chicago , "'Ethel Waite"' started performing around the time of her fourteenth birthday in 1907
She continued to perform in summer stock, and Armilda Jane, born in Milwaukee in 1923, began as a child actress in her mother's plays
At the start of the Depression 1930s, the Owens family left Milwaukee to settle in New York City , where Ethel Owen, now in her late thirties and early forties, found steady work in regional theatre, radio plays and even the black operetta, "Africana", with a mixed cast, which had its November 26, 1934 opening night at Broadway's newly-renamed Venice Theatre disrupted by a man claiming to be the story's uncredited co-author
Well known in summer stock by her tenth birthday, she was even offered a film contract at a time when the success of Shirley Temple's first starring films in 1934 caused studios to conduct searches for other talented performing youngsters, but her mother decided against the move
In succeeding years, she became a teenage performer in musical comedy and, changing her stage name to Pamela Britton, had co-starring roles on Broadway and in a few films, including two classics, the 1945 musical "Anchors Aweigh", playing Frank Sinatra's Brooklyn-accented girlfriend, and the 1950 noir, "D.O.A.", eventually moving to TV sitcoms as the scatterbrained title character in 1957's "Blondie" and, from 1963 to 1966, as the inquisitive landlady, Mrs. Brown, in "My Favorite Martian"
The frequent appearances she made between 1952 and 1957 on various incarnations of CBS's very popular " Jackie Gleason Show", provided more recognition than any other assignment in the course of her 60-year acting career
She died in the Georgia port city of Savannah, Georgia, six weeks short of her 104th birthday, outliving by 55 years her first husband, Raymond and, by more than two decades, their daughter, Pamela Britton, who died in 1974 at the age of 51, as well as her TV family, "son-in-law" Jackie Gleason and "daughter" Audrey Meadows, who died in 1987 and 1996, respectively