|Born||April 29, 1917|
Manhattan, New York, U.S.
|Died||July 15, 2012 (aged 95)|
Manhattan, New York, U.S.
|Alma mater||University of Chicago|
(m. 1936; div. 1939)
(m. 1940; div. 1945)
A. Schuyler Dunning
(m. 1946; div. 1953)
(m. 1961; died 1996)
|Children||2, including Ted Nelson|
Celeste Holm (April 29, 1917 – July 15, 2012) was an American stage, film and television actress.
Holm won an Academy Award for her performance in Elia Kazan's Gentleman's Agreement (1947), and was nominated for her roles in Come to the Stable (1949) and All About Eve (1950). She also is known for her performances in The Snake Pit (1948), A Letter to Three Wives (1949), and High Society (1956). She is also known for originating the role of Ado Annie in the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical Oklahoma! (1943).
Born and raised in Manhattan, Holm was an only child. Her mother, Jean Parke, was an American portrait artist and author. Her father, Theodor Holm, was a Norwegian businessman whose company provided marine adjustment services for Lloyd's of London. Because of her parents' occupations, she traveled often during her youth and attended various schools in the Netherlands, France and the United States. She began high school at the University School for Girls in Chicago, and then transferred to the Francis W. Parker School (Chicago) where she performed in many school stage productions and graduated as a member of the class of 1935. She then studied drama at the University of Chicago before becoming a stage actress in the late 1930s.
Holm's first professional theatrical role was in a production of Hamlet starring Leslie Howard. She first appeared on Broadway in a small part in Gloriana (1938), a comedy which lasted for only five performances, but her first major part on Broadway was in William Saroyan's revival of The Time of Your Life (1940) as Mary L. with fellow newcomer Gene Kelly. The role that got her the most recognition from critics and audiences was as Ado Annie in the premiere production of Rodgers and Hammerstein's Oklahoma! in 1943.
After she starred in the Broadway production of Bloomer Girl, 20th Century Fox signed Holm to a movie contract in 1946. She made her film debut that same year in Three Little Girls in Blue, making a startling entrance in a "Technicolor red" dress singing "Always a Lady," a belting Ado Annie-type song, although the character was different—a lady. For her role in Gentleman's Agreement (1947), she won an Oscar and Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actress. However, after another supporting role in All About Eve, Holm realized she preferred live theater to movie work, and only accepted a few select film roles over the next decade. The most successful of these were the comedy The Tender Trap (1955) and the musical High Society (1956), both of which co-starred Frank Sinatra. She starred as a professor-turned-reporter in New York City in the CBS television series Honestly, Celeste! (fall 1954) and was thereafter a panelist on Who Pays? (1959). She also appeared ABC's The Pat Boone Chevy Showroom.[better source needed]
In 1958, she starred as a reporter in an unsold television pilot called The Celeste Holm Show, based on the book No Facilities for Women. In 1965, she played the Fairy Godmother alongside Lesley Ann Warren in the CBS production of Cinderella. In 1970–71, she was featured on the NBC sitcom Nancy, with Renne Jarrett, John Fink and Robert F. Simon. In the storyline, Holm played Abby Townsend, the press secretary of the First Lady of the United States and the chaperone of Jarrett's character, Nancy Smith, the President's daughter.
During the 1970s and 1980s, Holm did more screen acting, with roles in films such as Tom Sawyer and Three Men and a Baby, and in television series (often as a guest star) such as Columbo, The Eleventh Hour, Archie Bunker's Place and Falcon Crest. In 1979, she played the role of First Lady Florence Harding in the television mini-series, Backstairs at the White House. Holm also starred in the musical The Utter Glory of Morrissey Hall, which flopped after a single performance (and seven previews) on Broadway. In December 1981 Holm appeared in the lead role in the British premiere of Kurt Weill's Lady in the Dark at the Nottingham Playhouse. She was a regular on the ABC soap opera Loving, appearing first in 1986 in the role of Lydia Woodhouse and again as Isabelle Dwyer Alden #2 from 1991 to 1992. She last appeared on television in the CBS television series Promised Land (1996–99).
A life member of The Actors Studio, Holm received numerous honors during her lifetime, including the 1968 Sarah Siddons Award for distinguished achievement in Chicago theatre; she was appointed to the National Arts Council by then-President Ronald Reagan, appointed Knight, First Class of the Order of St. Olav by King Olav of Norway in 1979, and inducted into the American Theater Hall of Fame in 1992. She remained active for social causes as a spokesperson for UNICEF, and for occasional professional engagements. From 1995 she was Chairman of the Board of Arts Horizons, a not-for-profit arts-in-education organization. In 1995, Holm was inducted into the Scandinavian-American Hall of Fame.
Holm was a guest at the 2009 Mid-Atlantic Nostalgia Convention in Aberdeen, Maryland. Some of the movies in which she appeared were screened at the festival, and the unaired television pilot for Meet Me in St. Louis was shown. She received an honorary award during the dinner banquet at the close of the event.
Holm's first marriage was at age 19 to Ralph Nelson in 1936. The marriage ended in 1939. Their son, Internet pioneer and sociologist Ted Nelson (born 1937), was raised by his maternal grandparents. In his 2010 memoir, Possiplex, her son, credited with coining the term "hypertext," described this and other choices as "entirely the right decisions." He reportedly did not name his mother in the book.
Holm married Francis Emerson Harding Davies, an English auditor, on January 7, 1940. Davies was a Roman Catholic, and she was received into the Roman Catholic Church for the purposes of their 1940 wedding; the marriage was dissolved on May 8, 1945.
From 1946 to 1952, Holm was married to airline public relations executive A. Schuyler Dunning, with whom she had a second son, businessman Daniel Dunning.
On April 29, 2004, her 87th birthday, Holm married opera singer Frank Basile, who was 41 years old. The couple met in October 1999 at a fundraiser for which Basile was hired to sing. Soon after their marriage, Holm and Basile sued to overturn the irrevocable trust that was created in 2002 by Daniel Dunning, Holm's younger son. The trust was ostensibly set up to shelter Holm's financial assets from taxes though Basile contended the real purpose of the trust was to keep him away from her money. The lawsuit began a five-year battle, which cost millions of dollars, and according to an article in The New York Times, left Holm and her husband with a "fragile hold" on their apartment, which Holm purchased for $10,000 cash in 1953 from her film earnings, and which in 2011 was believed to be worth at least $10,000,000.
Health and death
According to Basile, Holm had been treated for memory loss since 2002, suffered skin cancer, bleeding ulcers and a collapsed lung, and had hip replacements and pacemakers.
In June 2012, Holm was admitted to New York's Roosevelt Hospital with dehydration, where she suffered a heart attack on July 13, 2012; she died two days later at her Central Park West apartment, aged 95.
|1946||Three Little Girls in Blue||Miriam Harrington|
|1947||Carnival in Costa Rica||Celeste|
|Gentleman's Agreement||Anne Dettrey|
|1948||The Snake Pit||Grace|
|Road House||Susie Smith|
|1949||Chicken Every Sunday||Emily Hefferan|
|A Letter to Three Wives||Addie Ross (voice)||Uncredited|
|Come to the Stable||Sister Scholastica|
|Everybody Does It||Doris Blair Borland|
|1950||Champagne for Caesar||Flame O'Neill|
|All About Eve||Karen Richards|
|1955||The Tender Trap||Sylvia Crewes|
|1956||High Society||Liz Imbrie|
|1961||Bachelor Flat||Helen Bushmill|
|1963||Hailstones and Halibut Bones||Narrator (voice)||Short film|
|1967||Doctor, You've Got to Be Kidding!||Louise Halloran|
|1973||Tom Sawyer||Aunt Polly|
|1976||Bittersweet Love||Marian Lewis|
|1977||The Private Files of J. Edgar Hoover||Florence Hollister|
|1987||Three Men and a Baby||Mrs. Holden|
|1989||Nora's Christmas Gift||Nora Richards||Direct-to-video|
|1997||Still Breathing||Ida, Fletcher's Grand Mother|
|2012||Driving Me Crazy||Mrs. Ginsberg|
|2013||College Debts||Grandma GG||Final film role|
|1950||All Star Revue||Guest Actress||Episode "1.6"|
|1951||Lux Video Theatre||Eliza
|Episode: "The Pacing Goose"|
Episode: "Second Sight"
|1952||Schlitz Playhouse||Lettie Morgan||Episode: "Four's a Family"|
|Lux Video Theatre||Katherine Case||Episode: "The Bargain"|
|1953||Lux Video Theatre||Miss Prynne||Episode: "Lost Sunday"|
|Hollywood Opening Night||Episode: "Mrs. Genius"|
|Your Jeweler's Showcase||Episode: "Heart's Desire"|
|1954||Honestly, Celeste!||Celeste Anders||8 episodes|
|1955||The United States Steel Hour||Madge Collins||Episode: "The Bogey Man"|
|1956||Climax!||Mary Miller||Episode: "The Empty Room Blues"|
|Sneak Preview||Television Series|
|Carolyn||Carolyn Daniels||Television Movie|
|The Steve Allen Show||Mad Meggie||Episode: "2.8"|
|Producers' Showcase||Mad Meggie||Episode: "Jack and the Beanstalk"|
|1957||Schlitz Playhouse||Lettie Morgan||Episode: "The Wedding Present"|
|Goodyear Playhouse||Maggie Travis||Episode: "The Princess Back Home"|
|Zane Grey Theater||Sarah Kimball||Episode: "Fugitive"|
|The Yeoman of the Guard||Phoebe Meryll||Television Movie|
|1960||The Art Carney Special||Episode: "The Man in the Dog Suit"|
|The Christophers||Episode: "Women of the Bible"|
|1961||Play of the Week||Virginia||Episode: "A Clearing in the Woods"|
|1962||Follow the Sun||Miss Bullfinch||Episode: "The Irresistible Miss Bullfinch"|
|Checkmate||Laraine Whitman||Episode: "So Beats My Plastic Heart"|
|Alcoa Premiere||Laura Bennett||Episode: "Cry Out in Silence"|
|1963||Dr. Kildare||Nurse Jane Munson||Episode: "The Pack Rat and Prima Donna"|
|Burke's Law||Helen Forsythe||Episode: "Who Killed the Kind Doctor?"|
|1964||The Eleventh Hour||Billie Hamilton||Episode "How Do I Say I Love You?"|
|1965||Mr. Novak||Rose Herrod||Episode: "An Elephant Is Like a Tree"|
|Cinderella||Fairy Godmother||TV movie|
|Run for Your Life||Margot Horst||Episode: "The Cold, Cold War of Paul Bryan"|
|Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color||Mrs. Fuller||4 episodes|
|The Fugitive||Flo Hagerman||Episode: "The Old Man Picked a Lemon"|
|1966||The Long Hot Summer||Libby Rankin||Episode: "Face of Fear"|
|Meet Me in St. Louis||Mrs. Smith||TV movie|
|1967||The Fugitive||Pearl Patton||Episode: "Concrete Evidence"|
|The F.B.I.||Flo Clementi||Episode: "The Executioners: Part 1"|
Episode: "The Executioners: Part 2"
|Cosa Nostra, Arch Enemy of the FBI||Flo Clementi||TV movie|
|Insight||Mrs. Berns||Episode: "Fat Hands and a Diamond Ring"|
|1970||The Name of the Game||Irene Comdon||Episode: "The Brass Ring"|
|Swing Out, Sweet Land||Nancy Lincoln||TV movie|
|1972||The Delphi Bureau||Sybil Van Loween||Episode: "Pilot"|
|1973||Medical Center||Dr. Linda Wilson||Episode: "No Margin for Error"|
|1974||Medical Center||Geraldine Stern||Episode: "Web of Intrigue"|
|The Streets of San Francisco||Mrs. Shaninger||Episode: "Crossfire"|
|The Underground Man||Beatrice Broadhurst||Television Movie|
|Death Cruise||Elizabeth Mason||Television Movie|
|The Manhunter||Clara Calvert||Episode: "The Truck Murders"|
|1976||The American Woman: Portraits of Courage||Elizabeth Cady Stanton||Television Movie|
|Captains and the Kings||Sister Angela||Television Miniseries|
|Columbo||Mrs. Brandt||Episode: Old Fashioned Murder|
|1977||The Love Boat II||Eva McFarland||TV movie|
|The Wonderful World of Disney||Deirdre Wainwright||Episode: "The Bluegrass Special"|
|Wonder Woman||Dolly Tucker||Episode: "I Do, I Do"|
|1978||Lucan||Episode: "You Can't Have My Baby"|
|Fantasy Island||Mabel Jarvis||Episode: "The Beachcomber/The Last Whodunnit"|
|1979||Fantasy Island||Sister Veronica||Episode: "The Look Alikes/Winemaker"|
|Backstairs at the White House||Mrs. Florence Harding||Television Miniseries|
|Trapper John, M.D.||Claudia||Episode: "The Shattered Image"|
|The Love Boat||Estelle Castlewood||2 episodes|
|1981||Midnight Lace||Sylvia Randall||Television Movie|
|As the World Turns||Lauren Roberts||Television Series|
|Archie Bunker's Place||Estelle Harris||2 episodes|
|1982||American Playhouse||Celebrity||Episode: "The Shady Hill Kidnapping"|
|Trapper John, M.D.||Lillie Townsend||Episode: "Don't Rain on My Charade"|
|1983||Archie Bunker's Place||Estelle Harris||Episode: "Three Women"|
|This Girl for Hire||Zandra Stoneham||Television Movie|
|1984||Jessie||Molly Hayden||6 episodes|
|1985||Matt Houston||Katherine Hershey||Episode: "Company Secrets"|
|Falcon Crest||Anna Rossini||6 episodes|
|1987||Murder by the Book||Claire||TV movie|
|Magnum, P.I.||Abigail Baldwin||Episode: "The Love That Lies"|
|1988||Spenser: For Hire||Rose||Episode: "Haunting"|
|1989||CBS Summer Playhouse||Samantha Orbison||Episode: "Road Show"|
|Polly||Miss Snow||Television Movie|
|1989–90||Christine Cromwell||Samantha Cromwell||4 episodes|
|1990||Polly: Comin' Home!||Miss Snow||Television Movie|
|1991–92||Loving||Isabelle Alden||52 episodes|
|1992||Cheers||Grandmother Gaines||Episode: "No Rest for the Woody"|
|1995||Great Performances||Episode: "Talking With"|
|1996||Home of the Brave||Hattie Greene||Television Movie|
|Once You Meet a Stranger||Clara||Television Movie|
|Touched by an Angel||Hattie Greene||Episode: "Promised Land"|
|1996–99||Promised Land||Hattie Greene||67 episodes|
|1997||Touched by an Angel||Hattie Greene||2 episodes|
|1998||Touched by an Angel||Hattie Greene||Episode: "Vengeance Is Mine: Part 1"|
|2000||The Beat||Frances Robinson||13 episodes|
|2002||Third Watch||Florence||Episode: "Transformed"|
|2004||Whoopi||Diana||Episode: "The Squatters"|
|1938||Gloriana||Lady Mary||Little Theatre, Broadway|
|1940||The Time of Your Life||Mary L||Booth Theatre, Broadway|
|1940||Another Sun||Maria||National Theatre, Broadway|
|1940||The Return of the Vagabond||His Daughter|
|1941||Eight O'Clock Tuesday||Marcia Godden||Henry Miller's Theatre, Broadway|
|1941||My Fair Ladies||Lady Keith-Odlyn||Hudson Theatre, Broadway|
|1942||Papa Is All||Emma||Guild Theatre, Broadway|
|1942||All the Comforts of Home||Fifi Oritanski||Longacre Theatre, Broadway|
|1942||The Damask Cheek||Calla Longstreth||Playhouse Theatre, Broadway|
|1943||Oklahoma!||Ado Annie Carnes||St. James Theatre, Broadway|
|1944||Bloomer Girl||Evalina||Shubert Theatre, Broadway|
|1950||Affairs of State||Irene Elliott||Music Box Theatre, Broadway|
|1951||The King and I||Anna Leonowens
|St. James Theatre, Broadway|
|1952||Anna Christie||Anna Christopherson||Lyceum Theatre, Broadway|
|1954||His and Hers||Maggie Palmer||48th Street Theatre, Broadway|
|1958||Interlock||Mrs. Price||ANTA Theatre, Broadway|
|1958||Third Best Sport||Helen Sayre||Ambassador Theatre, Broadway|
|1960||Invitation to a March||Camilla Jablonski||Music Box Theatre, Broadway|
|Broadway Theatre, Broadway|
|1970||Candida||Candida||Longacre Theatre, Broadway|
|1973||The Irregular Verb To Love||Hedda Rankin||The Pocono Playhouse, PA|
|1975||Light Up The Sky||Ford's Theatre, Washington, DC|
|1975||Habeas Corpus||Lady Rumpers||Martin Beck Theatre, Broadway|
|1979||The Utter Glory of Morrissey Hall||Julia Faysle||Mark Hellinger Theatre, Broadway|
|1983||Hay Fever||Judith Bliss||Ahmanson Theatre, Los Angeles|
|1988||The Show Off||Mrs. Fisher||Williamstown Theatre, MA|
|1990||The Cocktail Hour||Philadelphia Theatre Company|
|1991||I Hate Hamlet||Lilian Troy||Walter Kerr Theatre, Broadway|
|1994||Allegro||Grandma Taylor||New York City Center|
|1994||Love Letters||Melissa Gardner||Williamstown Theatre, MA|
|1946||The Bob Crosby Show||Guest|||
|1950||Everybody Does It||Episode of Screen Guild Theater|||
|1952||Up in Central Park||Episode of Music In the Air|||
|1952||Foreign Affairs||Episode of Screen Guild Theater|||
|1953||Cluny Brown||Episode of Star Playhouse|||
|1976||Afterward||Episode of CBS Radio Mystery Theater|||
Awards and Nominations
|1947||New York Film Critics Circle||Best Actress||Gentleman's Agreement||Nominated|||
|1947||Golden Globe Award||Best Supporting Actress||Won|
|1947||Academy Awards||Best Supporting Actress||Won|
|1949||Come to the Stable||Nominated|
|1950||All About Eve||Nominated|
|1967||Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Achievement in Programming - Individuals||Insight||Nominated|
|1978||Outstanding Supporting Actress - Limited Series||Backstairs at the White House||Nominated|
|1987||Daytime Emmy Award||Outstanding Guest Performer in a Drama Series||Loving||Nominated|
In 1960, Holme received two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, one for her work in Motion Pictures located at 1500 Vine Street, and the other for her work on Television at the location 6821 Hollywood Blvd.
- Gates, Anita (July 15, 2012). "Celeste Holm, Witty Character Actress, Is Dead at 95". The New York Times. Retrieved December 23, 2014.
Celeste Holm, the New York-born actress who made an indelible Broadway impression as an amorous country girl in Rodgers and Hammerstein's "Oklahoma!", earned an Academy Award as the knowing voice of tolerance in "Gentleman's Agreement" and went on to a six-decade screen and stage career, frequently cast as the wistful or brittle sophisticate, died early Sunday at her apartment in Manhattan. She was 95. Her death was announced by Amy Phillips, a great-niece. Ms. Holm had a heart attack at Roosevelt Hospital in New York last week while being treated there for dehydration, but she was taken home on Friday.
- Kennedy, Mark (July 15, 2012). "Oscar-winning actress Celeste Holm dies at 95". NBC. Today. Associated Press. Archived from the original on July 17, 2012.
- Obituary: Celeste Holm, London: Daily Telegraph, 15 July 2012
- "Pat Boone Chevy Showroom: November 28, 1957". TV.com. Retrieved January 6, 2020.
- Theatre programme: Lady in the Dark, Nottingham Playhouse, UK, 9 December 1981.
- Garfield, David (1980). "Appendix: Life Members of The Actors Studio as of January 1980". A Player's Place: The Story of The Actors Studio. New York: MacMillan Publishing Co., Inc. p. 278. ISBN 978-0025426504.
- "SAHF Inductees". hostfest.com. Norsk Høstfest. Retrieved January 11, 2016.
- "SunDeis 2006". SunDeis Film Festival. Archived from the original on September 10, 2006. Retrieved October 29, 2007.
- "Profile: Celeste Holm profile". Superiorpics. Retrieved January 6, 2020.
- Leland, John (July 2, 2011). "Love and Inheritance: A Family Feud". The New York Times. Retrieved July 4, 2011.
- "Births, deaths, marriages, divorces". Time. May 12, 1952. Archived from the original on March 12, 2009. Retrieved May 15, 2008.
- "Celeste Holm, Oscar-winning actress, dies at 95". Express-Times. Easton, PA. Associated Press. July 15, 2012. Retrieved October 22, 2015.
Celeste Holm married her fourth husband, actor Robert Wesley Addy, in 1966. The couple lived in Washington Township., Morris County, N.J.
- Summary of Preserved Farms - EG Jewett / Holm Farm, Morris County Agriculture Development Board, October 12, 2012. Accessed October 22, 2015. "Owned since 1922 by the family of actress Celeste Holm, this large farm atop Schooley's Mountain is in wheat and tree fruit production."
- "Actress' farm to be saved from bulldozer". New Jersey Hills. Retrieved January 25, 2020.
- Jones, Kenneth (April 30, 2004). "December Bride: Shocking Guests, Celeste Holm Marries Beau at 85th Birthday Party". Playbill.
- "Fire At Robert De Niro's NYC Apartment; No Injuries". The Oakland Press. June 8, 2012.
- "Celeste Holm on Bob Crosby Show". Harrisburg Telegraph. January 26, 1946. p. 15. Retrieved May 7, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.
- "On The Air". York, PA. The Gazette and Daily. March 2, 1950. p. 20. Retrieved May 8, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Dial Chatter". The La Crosse Tribune. May 11, 1952. p. 18. Retrieved May 8, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Radio Programs". The Decatur Daily Review. May 4, 1952. p. 50. Retrieved May 8, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.
- Kirby, Walter (November 15, 1953). "Better Radio Programs for the Week". The Decatur Daily Review. p. 50. Retrieved July 7, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.
- "CBS Radio Mystery Theater". Santa Ana Register. February 26, 1976. p. 19. Retrieved May 7, 2015 – via Newspapers.com.
- "Celeste Holme - Awards". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved April 5, 2020.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Celeste Holm.|
- Celeste Holm at IMDb
- Celeste Holm at the Internet Broadway Database
- Celeste Holm at the Internet Off-Broadway Database
- Celeste Holm at the TCM Movie Database
- Celeste Holm at AllMovie
- Celeste Holm at Find a Grave
- Portrait of Celeste Holm and Wesley Addy by Margaret Holland Sargent
- Obituary at We Love Soaps