Queen Bee (film)
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Ranald MacDougall|
|Produced by||Jerry Wald|
|Screenplay by||Ranald MacDougall|
|Based on||The Queen Bee
by Edna L. Lee
|Music by||George Duning|
|Editing by||Viola Lawrence|
|Distributed by||Columbia Pictures|
|Running time||95 minutes|
Queen Bee is a 1955 American drama film starring Joan Crawford, John Ireland, Fay Wray, Betsy Palmer, and Barry Sullivan in a story about a family dominated by a ruthless woman. The screenplay by Ranald MacDougall was based upon the novel The Queen Bee, by Edna L. Lee. The film was directed by MacDougall and produced by Jerry Wald.
Eva Phillips (Joan Crawford) dominates her Georgia mansion and her husband Avery (Barry Sullivan), an alcoholic mill owner who hates his wife. A cousin, Jennifer Stewart (Lucy Marlow), visits and watches in horror as Eva maneuvers to prevent the marriage of Avery's sister Carol (Betsy Palmer) to Judson Prentiss (John Ireland). Judson was once Eva's lover, and when Carol learns the truth, she commits suicide.
Jennifer and Avery are drawn together. Eva senses the developing relationship and increases her malevolent actions. Judson, guilty over Carol's death, is determined to avenge it. He takes Eva driving and when Eva discerns that he wants her dead, she frantically attacks him, resulting in a crash over a cliff, killing them both. Jennifer and Avery are free to love each other.
- Joan Crawford as Eva Phillips
- John Ireland as Judson Prentiss
- Betsy Palmer as Carol Lee Phillips
- Barry Sullivan as Avery Phillips
- Lucy Marlow as Jennifer Stewart
- William Leslie as Ty McKinnon
- Fay Wray as Sue McKinnon
- Katherine Anderson as Miss Breen
- Tim Hovey as Ted Phillips
- Linda Bennett as Tessa Phillips
Bosley Crowther of the New York Times noted, "[Miss Crawford] is the height of mellifluous meanness and frank insincerity." William K. Zinsser of the New York Herald Tribune wrote, "Miss Crawford plays her role with such silky villainy we long to see her dispatched."
Queen Bee was released on Region 1 DVD by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment in 2001. It was also re-released on DVD in the TCM Vault Collection four disc DVD set "Joan Crawford in the 1950's" in November, 2012.
- Quirk, Lawrence J.. The Films of Joan Crawford. The Citadel Press, 1968.