Heather Angel (actress)

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Heather Angel
Heather Angel in Cry Havoc trailer.jpg
from the trailer for the film Cry 'Havoc' (1943)
Born Heather Grace Angel
(1909-02-09)9 February 1909[1]
Headington, Oxford, Oxfordshire, England, UK
Died 13 December 1986(1986-12-13) (aged 77)
Santa Barbara, California, U.S.
Cause of death Cancer
Occupation Actress
Years active 1926–1979
Spouse(s) Ralph Forbes (m. 1934–41)
Robert B. Sinclair (m. 1944–70) (his death)

Heather Grace Angel (9 February 1909 – 13 December 1986) was a British-American actress. She filed a petition for naturalization as a citizen of the United States (No. 120988) in 1944.[2]

Early years[edit]

Angel was born in Headington, Oxford, England,[3] and brought up on a farm near Banbury. She was the younger of two sisters. Her mother was born Mary Letitia Stock, and her father was Andrea Angel, an Oxford University chemistry lecturer who was killed in the Silvertown explosion in 1917 and posthumously awarded the Edward Medal (First Class).


Angel began her stage career at the Old Vic in 1926 and later appeared with touring companies. Her Broadway debut came in December 1937, in Love of Women at the Golden Theatre.[4] She also appeared in The Wookey (1941–42).[5]


Angel appeared in many British films before going to Hollywood. She made her first screen appearance in City of Song. She later had a leading role in Night in Montmartre (1931), and followed this success with The Hound of the Baskervilles (1932). Over the next few years, she played strong roles in such films as The Mystery of Edwin Drood (1935), The Three Musketeers (1935), The Informer (1935) and The Last of the Mohicans (1936).

In 1937 she made the first of five appearances as Phyllis Clavering in the popular Bulldog Drummond series.[6] She was cast as Kitty Bennett in Pride and Prejudice (1940) and as the maid, Ethel, in Suspicion (1941). Angel was also the leading lady in the first screen version of Raymond Chandler's The High Window, released in 1942 as Time to Kill. She was one of the passengers of Alfred Hitchcock's Lifeboat (1944).[6] Her film appearances in the following years were few, but she returned to Hollywood to provide voices for the Walt Disney animated films Alice in Wonderland (1951) and Peter Pan (1953). From 1964 until 1965, she played a continuing role in the television soap opera Peyton Place.[6] After that role, she played Miss Faversham, a nanny and female friend of Sebastian Cabot's character of Giles French in the situation comedy Family Affair.[citation needed]

Personal life[edit]

Heather Angel married actor Ralph Forbes in 1934. Angel had acted with Henry Wilcoxon in Self Made Lady (1932) when they were both in Britain, so when that year she had heard Wilcoxon was also in Hollywood, she contacted him again. She immediately invited him to polo matches at the home of Will Rogers, and she taught him horse-riding, and they later acted together in two other films: The Last of the Mohicans (1936) and Lady Hamilton (1941). Though they remained lifelong friends, they never married. Heather and her husband Ralph were both present at the wedding of Wilcoxon to his first wife Sheila Browning and had wanted the wedding to be at their house in Coldwater Canyon.[7]

Angel was married to Robert B. Sinclair (1905–1970), a film and television director. On January 4, 1970, an intruder, Billy McCoy Hunter, broke into their home. When Sinclair attempted to protect Angel, Hunter killed Sinclair in Angel's presence, then fled. He was allegedly found with a knife and pistol when arrested.[8] The incident is believed to have been a failed burglary.


Angel has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, for her contributions to film, at 6312 Hollywood Boulevard. Another source says that her star in the motion picture category is at 6301 Hollywood Boulevard.[9]


Angel died from cancer in Santa Barbara, California, and was buried in Santa Barbara Cemetery.[10]

Selected filmography[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Four Stars in Color". Chicago Tribune. July 28, 1940. Retrieved October 15, 2010. 
  2. ^ Profile, ancestry.com; accessed September 25, 2015.
  3. ^ "Minute Biographies - Heather Angel". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. October 30, 1933. Retrieved October 15, 2010. 
  4. ^ "Stage News". New York, Brooklyn. The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. December 7, 1937. p. 9. 
  5. ^ "Heather Angel". Playbill Vault. Retrieved December 21, 2015. 
  6. ^ a b c "Heather Angel, 77, Is Dead; Acted in More Than 60 Films". The New York Times. December 16, 1986. Retrieved October 15, 2010. 
  7. ^ Katherine Orrison and Henry Wilcoxon: Lionheart in Hollywood, p.72
  8. ^ "RETIRED DIRECTOR IS SLAIN ON COAST; Robert Sinclair Is Stabbed in Home Suspect Held". The New York Times. January 5, 1970. Retrieved October 15, 2010. 
  9. ^ "Heather Angel". Hollywood Walk of Fame. Retrieved December 21, 2015. 
  10. ^ Profile, findagrave.com; accessed September 25, 2015.


  • Wilcoxon, Henry; Orrison, Katherine (1991). Lionheart in Hollywood: the autobiography of Henry Wilcoxon. Metuchen, NJ and London: The Scarecrow Press, Inc. ISBN 0-8108-2476-0. 

External links[edit]