|Born||Nellie Paulina Burgin
July 14, 1930
Knoxville, Tennessee, United States
|Occupation||Actress, singer, entrepreneur|
Jerome Courtland (m. 1950–55)
Polly Bergen (born Nellie Paulina Burgin; July 14, 1930) is an American actress, singer, television host, and entrepreneur.
Bergen appeared in many film roles, most notably in the original Cape Fear (1962) opposite Gregory Peck and Robert Mitchum. She had roles in three Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis comedy films in the early 1950s: At War with the Army, That's My Boy and The Stooge. Later roles included Mrs. Vernon-Williams in Cry-Baby, a John Waters film.
Bergen received an Emmy award for her portrayal of singer Helen Morgan in the episode The Helen Morgan Story of the 1950s television series Playhouse 90. Signed to Columbia Records, she enjoyed a successful recording career during this era, as well. In the 1950s she also was known as "The Pepsi Cola Girl," having done a series of commercials for that product.
In 1963 Bergen co-starred with Doris Day and James Garner in the film comedy, Move Over, Darling. Garner's character marries hers when he believes his long-lost wife (Day) to be deceased, only to have her turn up.
Bergen became a semi-regular cast member of 2006's Commander-in-Chief as the mother of Mackenzie Allen, the President of the United States, played by Geena Davis. Bergen herself had once played the first female President of the United States, as President Leslie McCloud in the 1964 film, Kisses for My President.
Bergen was born in Knoxville in eastern Tennessee, the daughter of Lucy (née Lawhorn) and William Hugh Burgin, a construction engineer. "Bill Bergen," as he was later known, had singing talent and appeared with his daughter in several episodes of her 18-episode NBC comedy/variety show, The Polly Bergen Show, which aired in the 1957-1958 television season.
In 1965, Bergen created the Polly Bergen Company cosmetics line. She has also created lines of jewelry and shoe brands, and has authored three books on beauty.
Bergen converted to Judaism after having married Hollywood talent agent Freddie Fields, with whom she had two adopted children, Pamela Kerry Fields and Peter William Fields. She had previously been a Southern Baptist.
When not working, Bergen lives at her home in Connecticut.
|Film and Television credits|
|Across the Rio Grande||Singer|
|At War with the Army||Helen Palmer|
|1951||That's My Boy||Betty 'Babs' Hunter|
|1952||The Stooge||Mary Turner|
|1953||Cry of the Hunted||Janet Tunner|
|Fast Company||Carol Maldon|
|Escape from Fort Bravo||Alice Owens|
|1954||The Blue Angel||Herself-Host|
|1954–1955||The Pepsi-Cola Playhouse||Herself-Host|
|1957||The Helen Morgan Story||Helen Morgan||Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries or a Movie|
|1957–1958||The Polly Bergen Show||Herself||18 episodes|
|1956–1961||To Tell the Truth||Herself|
|1961||Alfred Hitchcock Presents||Crystal Coe||Episode: You Can't Trust a Man|
|1962||Cape Fear||Peggy Bowden|
|Belle Sommers||Belle Sommers|
|What's My Line||Herself||January 28, 1962|
|1963||The Caretakers||Nominated - Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Drama|
|Move Over, Darling||Bianca Steele|
|1964||Kisses for My President||U.S. President Leslie Harrison McCloud|
|1967||A Guide for the Married Man||Technical Adviser (Clara Brown)||cameo|
|1974||Death Cruise||Sylvia Carter|
|1975||Murder on Flight 502||Mona Briarly|
|1976–1977||Not for Women Only||Herself-Host|
|1977||Harold Robbins' 79 Park Avenue||Vera Keppler||TV miniseries|
|1978||How to Pick Up Girls!||Dana Greenberg|
|1981||The Million Dollar Face||Jo Burns|
|1982||Born Beautiful||Marion Carmody|
|The Love Boat||Dana Pierce||3 episodes|
|1983||The Winds of War||Rhoda Henry||TV miniseries|
|1984||Fantasy Island||Esther Brandell||Episode: Lady of the House/Mrs. Brandell's Favorites|
|1985||Hotel||Elizabeth Hastings||Episode: Images|
|Murder, She Wrote||Dr. Jocelyn Laird||Episode: School for Scandal|
|1987||Making Mr. Right||Estelle Stone|
|1988||Addicted to His Love||Vivien Langford|
|She Was Marked for Murder||Laura Lee Webster|
|1988–1989||War and Remembrance||Rhoda Henry||TV miniseries|
|1989||Mother, Mother||Barbara Cutler|
|The Haunting of Sarah Hardy||Emily Stepford|
|My Brother's Wife||Myra Gilbert|
|Steel Magnolias||Clairee Belcher||TV pilot|
|1992||Lady Against the Odds||Cleo Storrs|
|1991–1992||Baby Talk||Doris Campbell||23 episodes|
|1993||Arly Hanks||Ruby Bee|
|1995||Dr. Jekyll and Ms. Hyde||Mrs. Unterveldt|
|The Surrogate||Sandy Gilman|
|Once Upon a Time... When We Were Colored||Miss Maybry|
|1996||In the Blink of an Eye||Murial|
|For Hope||Molly Altman|
|1998||Touched by an Angel||Stella||Episode: Deconstructing Harry|
|2004||The Sopranos||Fran Felstein||Episode: In Camelot|
|2005||Paradise, Texas||Beverly Cameron|
|2006||A Very Serious Person||Mrs. A|
|Candles on Bay Street||Rosemary|
|2005–2006||Commander in Chief||Kate Allen||10 episodes|
|2007–2011||Desperate Housewives||Stella Wingfield||10 episodes|
|2012||Struck by Lightning||Grandma|
- 1955 Little Girl Blue
- 1957 Bergen Sings Morgan — The Billboard 200 — 10
- 1957 The Party's Over — The Billboard 200 — 20
- 1958 Polly and Her Pop
- 1959 My Heart Sings — Columbia #CS 8018 — orchestra conducted by Luther Henderson
- 1959 All Alone by the Telephone
- 1959 First Impressions — with Farley Granger and Hermione Gingold
- 1960 Four Seasons of Love
- 1961 Sings the Hit Songs from Do-Re-Mi and Annie Get Your Gun
- 1963 Act One, Sing Too
- 1996 My Heart Sings — re-release
- "Polly Bergen Biography (1930-)". filmreference.com. Retrieved March 5, 2014.
- "Polly Bergen Biography - IMDb". IMDb.com. Retrieved March 5, 2014.
- "Acting, Just for The Fun of It". The Washington Post. December 18, 1988. Retrieved March 5, 2014.
- "Wendy Riche Biography - IMDb". IMDb.com. Retrieved March 5, 2014.
- "Allmusic: Polly Bergen - Discography". Allmusic.com. Retrieved March 5, 2014.
- "Discogs: Polly Bergen - Discography". Discogs.com. Retrieved March 7, 2014.
- "Allmusic: Polly Bergen - Billboard Charts". Allmusic.com. Retrieved March 7, 2014.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Polly Bergen.|
- Polly Bergen at the Internet Movie Database
- Polly Bergen at the Internet Broadway Database
- Polly Bergen at the Internet Off-Broadway Database
- Polly Bergen at Allmusic
- Polly Bergen – Madame President