||This article includes a list of references, related reading or external links, but its sources remain unclear because it lacks inline citations. (March 2013)|
October 16, 1917
New York City, New York, U.S.
|Died||March 3, 1966
Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, U.S.
|Cause of death||Ovarian cancer|
|Spouse(s)||John Rox (1948–1957)
Paul Davis (1964–1966)
|Awards||Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series|
Alicia “Alice” Pearce (October 16, 1917 – March 3, 1966) was an American actress. Brought to Hollywood by Gene Kelly to reprise her Broadway performance in the film version of On the Town (1949), Pearce played comedic supporting roles in several films, before being cast as Gladys Kravitz in Bewitched in 1964. She won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series posthumously after the second season of the series. She died from ovarian cancer in 1966.
Early life and career
Born in New York City, Pearce was educated in Europe and returned to the United States as an adult. She began working in nightclubs as a comedienne and was cast in the original Broadway production of On the Town (1944-1946). Gene Kelly was so impressed by her that she became the only cast member to be included in the film version in 1949. Her comedic performance was well received by critics and public alike, and she was given her own television variety show. More movie roles followed, and she made appearances on Broadway, where she met her husband, director Paul Davis, during a production of Bells Are Ringing.
In 1964, Pearce was originally approached to play the part of Grandmama in the ABC television comedy series The Addams Family. She turned down the part, which went to veteran actress Blossom Rock. Pearce then joined the cast of the ABC television series Bewitched. As the nagging and nosy neighbor, Gladys Kravitz, Pearce's scenes were almost entirely reactions to acts of witchcraft she had witnessed at the house across the street. Her hysterical accusations against Samantha, played by Elizabeth Montgomery, and the disbelief of her husband Abner (George Tobias), provided a common thread through many of the series' early episodes. Pearce was posthumously awarded an Emmy Award for this role, which was, according to her, her favorite role.
Pearce was also a good friend of actor and photographer Cris Alexander. When Alexander was working on the illustrations for Patrick Dennis's bestseller Little Me he asked Pearce to appear in the work as Winnie, the reform school friend of Belle Poitrine, the biography's subject. She also appeared as several characters in Dennis' and Alexander's later project, First Lady: My Thirty Days at the White House.
Pearce was diagnosed with terminal cancer before Bewitched began. Pearce kept her illness a secret, although her rapid weight loss was quite evident during the second season of the sitcom. She died from ovarian cancer towards the end of the second year of Bewitched at the age of 48. Pearce was cremated and her ashes were scattered at sea.
After Pearce's death, the role of Gladys Kravitz was played by Sandra Gould.
|1949||On the Town||Lucy Shmeeler|
|1949||The Alice Pearce Show||Host||Unknown episodes|
|1951||Lux Video Theatre||Nina||Episode: "Dames Are Poison"|
|1952||The Belle of New York||Elsie Wilkins|
|1953||The Motorola Television Hour||Hagga||Episode: "The Thirteen Clocks"|
|1953–1954||Jamie||Annie Moakum||3 episodes|
|1955||How to Be Very, Very Popular||Miss "Syl" Sylvester|
|1955||Alice in Wonderland||Dormouse||Television movie|
|1956||The Opposite Sex||Olga|
|1961||The Twilight Zone||Mrs. Nielsen||Episode: "Static"|
|1962||Lad: A Dog||Hilda, the Nurse|
|1963||My Six Loves||Bus Driver|
|1963||Tammy and the Doctor||Millie Baxter, Nurse|
|1963||The Thrill of It All||Irving's wife|
|1963||The Donna Reed Show||Adele Collins||Episode: " A Touch of Glamour"|
|1964||Dear Heart||Miss Moore|
|1964||Hazel||Miss Elsie||S3/E17:"Hot Potato ala Hazel"|
|1964||The Disorderly Orderly||Miss Fuzzibee, Talkative Patient|
|1964||Kiss Me, Stupid||Mrs. Mulligan|
|1964–1966||Bewitched||Gladys Kravitz||27 episodes|
|1965||Dear Brigitte||Unemployment Office Clerk|
|1966||The Glass Bottom Boat||Mabel Fenimore||Alternative title: The Spy in Lace Panties|
|1967||Vacation Playhouse||Music Teacher||Episode: "My Boy Googie"
|Year||Award||Category||Title of work||Result|
|1966||Emmy Award||Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Comedy||Bewitched||Won|
|2003||TV Land Awards||Nosiest Neighbor||Bewitched||Won|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Alice Pearce.|
- Alice Pearce at the Internet Broadway Database
- Alice Pearce at the Internet Movie Database
- "Alice Pearce". Find a Grave. Retrieved September 14, 2010.